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Microphone problems in Linux?

Has anyone else gotten a microphone (internal) to work in Linux (Firefox/Chrome)? It keeps saying either "Oops, I couldn’t understand what you said" or "I can't hear you very well" and nothing at all happens when I click the "Play back your recording" button... But it works with a Flash microphone test at http://msuconfuciusinstitute.org/scheduler/mictest.php

February 26, 2012



In my Ubuntu 10.04, with Flash 11 installed, I had to go to this special Adobe page: http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/es/flashplayer/help/settings_manager06.html , and there set duolingo as "Always allow". This is because the duoling recorder doesn't ask you for permission, and so it can't access the mic. Once you add duolingo as a trusted site that can access your mic, recording works perfectly.


thank you, that worked for me as well in Ubuntu 12.10 with internal microphone on a VAIO laptop


Also helped hier: xubuntu 12.04, external mic, Asus laptop


Confirmed solution for Ubuntu 12.04 too, thank you


Thanks! It worked for me on Ubuntu 12.04 and firefox.


Works for Firefox 24 on Linux Mint 14. Great help! this should be on the error message!


How do you add a trusted website? Duolingo doesn't appear amongst the visited sites for me...


Thank you a lot! I had the same issue and then I made 3 things to fix it: 1) Duolingo Settings - Microphone ON: Click or hover on the upper right corner of Duolingo website and go to Settings and make sure the Microphone is set to ON. 2) Make sure the microphone is plugged into the computer and then do the Flash microphone test at http://msuconfuciusinstitute.org/scheduler/mictest.php to check if the microphone is working in your Firefox browser. 3) As user iox said, Go to go to this special Adobe page: http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/es/flashplayer/help/settings_manager06.html , and there set duolingo as "Always allow". This is because the duoling recorder doesn't ask you for permission, and so it can't access the mic. Once you add duolingo as a trusted site that can access your mic, recording works perfectly.


The flash mic you provided works for me as well. Not being facetious, but on my computer when I get the Oops.. message I have to speak up a little more and enunciate my words more clearly for Duolingo to understand me. Sometimes I have to try it several times.


I've tried talking louder and slower, but also the playback doesn't work at all, which suggested that something is wrong.


http://msuconfuciusinstitute.org/scheduler/mictest.php works for me but my mic doesn't work on duolingo. Too bad! I'm on Ubuntu 11.04


I get playback but the program says it does'nt hear me.


You can follow this tip: In addition the settings you can adjust on macromedia website cited above. You have to enable recording in volume control options of your current distro in use.

I use LXDE and I'm configuring this option with gnome-alsamixer package.

I'm considering you have alsa audio system configured previously in your system.

Anyway you can do this without download any package, just type: $ alsamixer

Then you scroll to capture settings and adjust the volume using the comand line interface with directional keys. To enable or unable (set to mute) you press space key.

I hope you all solve this issue. See you.


it is also the solution for Fedora 18


you just need to check your configuration. Open the flash panel control (I assume that you must have it installed on your ubuntu distribution) and add duolingo domain to the camera and microphone settings by site.


Aside from iox's fix and various other fixes, there is something else that can be wrong.

If your microphone doesn't work in other /flash/ microphone tests, right click the flash applet, go to settings, and make sure that your microphone is the one selected. Often OS's will have a default, like "Intel Audio" and such that do nothing and are selected by default.


It was actually easy for me to fix.

1) When the window shows up for the first time, make sure to select "allow" and tick the box "always remember". 2) Take notice that Google Chrome will also ask you for permission with a toolbar that extends from the top, so don't forget to click on "allow" there, too! I missed that one at first.


the "oscilloscope" shows me very high noise from the microphone and my voice isn't recognized. When i record to any other software, i get close to zero noise. Please fix this thing.

And i get no playback when i try to play my recording in duolingo. no sound, not even noise.

i'm using a usb mic.

I'm using Ubuntu.


Type alsamixer in a terminal window. You can check the mic activation there. Be sure exploring both options (audio recording and audio reproducing panel).

I hope you haven't gave up trying use Duolingo on linux due long time without answer here.

Have good studies.


Not working with chromium either. a screenshot also shows a graphics problem in chromium: https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/4435155/DuoLingo/Kuvakaappaus.png


Also not working in google chrome / ubuntu.

looks better than in chromium and it asks to allow the microphone (firefox didn't even ask it) but still not recognizing my voice.


also i have set my usb mic as the default device as written here by someone before.-..


I have same problem on Ubuntu 16.04 LTS with Chromium and Firefox. It looks strange because my microphone works with Duolingo time by time :/


Try to use Google Chrome. It utilizes a updated built-in version of flashplayer.

Firefox and Chromium rely on flashplayer plugin installed in the system library. On linux the supported version got stuck in 11v series.

By the way, you can solve that issue by installing a updated flashplayer plugin derived from Chrome technologies:

  1. pepperflashplugin-nonfree (for Chromium technologies);
  2. browser-plugin-freshplayer-pepperflash (for Mozilla technologies).

Both packages are based on ppa repository I think, but your distro may have versions of it in the default repo. Good luck!


Pepper doesn't seem to be available for 16.04? I have adobe-flashplugin installed but don't seem to find duolingo.com among the visited sites on http://www.macromedia.com/support/documentation/en/flashplayer/help/settings_manager06.html Is there a way to add it?


Yes, it is available. You don't need to add a specific PPA nowadays. I've tested a distro based in xxbuntu 16.04 series. Look-up my last edition of the post above. I've corrected the package names respecting the package list nomenclature. Maybe you just need to activate third party repository to find it instead.

I think it's easier to find it using Synaptic package manager.

Let us know your progress. Maybe helpfull to anybody who is struggling with Flash issues on linux.


It works in Firefox now, thanks.


You're welcome. Well done!


I'm using Firefox on Ubuntu 19.10. Duolingo doesn't offer me a microphone option in settings and never asks me to speak. I've seen that there are discussions on flash settings from several years ago, but I really hope that we aren't still using Flash, surely? Can anyone let me know how to get Duolingo to give me speaking tasks on current Ubuntu/Firefox? Thanks.

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