ALSA Setup Guide
[ToDo]: include base information common for all the distros ( we can use the simulation package installation; i.e. instead of use!
apt-get install alsa-utils
we can use
binary-package install alsa-utils
This convention advoid specific distro complications. You can go to your distro documentation (or we can include here links ) about how to install a package. This doesn't, of course, address things like init scripts which are managed in widely different ways on different distros.
Gentoo's ALSA documentation
http://www.gentoo.org/doc/en/alsa-guide.xml Page is pretty specific to Gentoo. References the Gentoo specific commands to install Gentoo specific scripts which do Gentoo specific things (like the gentoo init-scripts, which are distribution specific), none of which have links to any explanations.
Has some general description of using with the now dying DEVFS (kernel 2.6.x suggests not using DEVFS anymore). udev / 2.6 kernel systems (now the default) will generally just work first time, as the insersion of the sound modules creates hotplug events which cause udev to create the device nodes.