When I got Steam for linux, I was excited to start goofing around but found there were issues with sound and my distro of choice, opensuse 12.2. After several hours of searching here is what I've come up with that seems to make the 5 games I have all play nicely together. I hope this helps someone who might be having a tough time.
1. add the following to ~/.bashrc: export SDL_AUDIODRIVER=pulseaudio 2. UNCOMMENT the following line in /etc/openal/alsoft.conf: (note that this IS all one line) drivers = pulse,alsa,core,oss,solaris,sndio,mmdevapi,dsound,winmm,port,opensl,null,wave
Why did I do it this way? I also have UT2004 and Nexuiz Classic in addition to Counter Strike Source, Half Life, and Red Orchestra Ostfront. If I used alsa, I had sound in CSS, and HL, but NOT in RO or UT2004 because those two games use openal for audio. Taking these steps got me sound in all the games EXCEPT Nexuiz. I had to change the launch script to "nexuiz-linux-glx.sh" and then that worked fine.
I also have my system set up as a digital audio workstation and these things seem to have no bad effects on it.
Operating System: opensuse 12.2 64-bit Kernel: 3.4.33-desktop Desktop: KDE 4.8.5 Graphics Card: Nvidia GTX 480 Graphics Driver: Nvidia Proprietary 310.40 System Board: Gigabyte GA-X58A-UD3R Sound Devices: On-board Intel, Nvidia Graphics Card HD, Fender Mustang 1 USB Audio Dev Sound Server Choice: Pulse Audio with support for Alsa and OpenAL Steam Games: Half-Life, Counter Strike Source, Red Orchestra Ostfront Non-Steam Games: UT2004, Nexuiz Classic
Please note that there might be a better way but this works for me...