Bluetooth Problems

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Bluetooth Problems

Postby jobex » Mon Sep 09, 2013 12:36 pm

I have a cheap bluetooth usb dongle which I hoped to use to connect my computer to my bluetooth headset. I have tried getting a connection with Mint14 KDE 64bit and Mepis12 with no success. Sometimes the dongle seems to be recognised and can be paired with the headphones but will not connect. Sometimes it's not even recognised. The headset works fine with my tablet so either the dongle is at fault or it is a Linux, perhaps more specifically KDE, problem. I have searched for answers and many people seem to have similar problems but I have not come across a solution. There are many suggestions out there but none that works. Can anyone shed a clearer light on this?
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Bluetooth Problems

Postby jobex » Wed Sep 11, 2013 2:10 pm

I am surprised that nobody has yet responded to my question. Since my first posting I have tried a number of live distros and found very variable performance with my bluetooth dongle. None of them has been satisfactory. I have not kept a careful record of what happened but some distros detected the dongle, others did not. I got the impression that Gnome was rather more consistent than KDE. Of those that found the dongle several detected my headset but failed to connect and some either crashed or froze. My efforts to search for a solution indicate that these are very common problems, which have been going on for years, but I am unable to determine whether they stem from the dongle (cheap!), the distro, the desktop or something else. My only idea now is to buy a more expensive dongle but I fear it may not be any better.
Does anyone know what might be wrong or can you suggest a way forward?
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Postby nelz » Wed Sep 11, 2013 5:13 pm

I doubt that the desktop has any relevance, they all use the same bluez libraries underneath. Unless it works reliably on different hardware, I'd suspect the dongle. What make and model is it? lsusb will give the vendor and product IDs.
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Bluetooth Problems

Postby jobex » Thu Sep 12, 2013 11:33 am

Thanks for your response. I too suspect the dongle but I do wonder why different distros behave differently with it.

The output from lsusb shows:

Device 003: ID 0a12:0001 Cambridge Silicon Radio, Ltd Bluetooth Dongle (HCI mode)


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Bluetooth Problems

Postby jobex » Fri Sep 13, 2013 1:14 pm

It was the dongle. I took the plunge and bought an Asus dongle for a tenner and it has been fine so far, working out of the box on 2 different computers and 2 different distros. However, I am still puzzled about the poor performance of the cheap dongle. Surely a dongle is a dongle? I suppose you get what you pay for.
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Postby wyliecoyoteuk » Fri Sep 13, 2013 3:34 pm

I had 2 cheap Medion Bluetooth dongles, worked fine with Ubuntu 12.04, on 12.10 they stopped working, and haven't since.
different radio chipsets have varying support from the Bluez stack I expect, or it could be a firmware issue
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