This article describes how to fix error:

E: [pulseaudio] main.c: Daemon startup failed.

To solve more audio problems in Linux Mint, refer to this article:

1: Fix /etc/pulse/

If you get the error - pulseaudio Daemon startup failed. It's often related to the file /etc/pulse/

You can inspect the file and remove the problematic lines by:

sudo nano /etc/pulse/

In my case two additional lines were causing the error:

set-card-profile 3  output:analog-stereo
set-default-sink 3

After deletion restart the pulseaudio by:

pulseaudio -D

To find more about setting default sound device in Linux Mint you can check: Set new default sound device

2: Check pulseaudio

Sometimes the error may be shown as:

Establishing connection to PulseAudio. Please wait

To fix it you can run:

pulseaudio --check
pulseaudio -D

3: Remove ~/.config/pulse

In some cases you can delete the folder ~/.config/pulse which will help starting pulseaudio

mv ~/.config/pulse ~/.config/pulse.old
pulseaudio --start

4: Reinstall pulseaudio

As an alternative solution you can reinstall pulseaudio to fix configuration issues and general problems.

The commands to fix pulseaudio are:

sudo apt purge pulseaudio
sudo apt clean
sudo apt autoremove
sudo apt-get install pulseaudio pavucontrol

few additional packages are needed:

sudo apt install cinnamon cinnamon-dbg mint-meta-cinnamon

Source: failed to start pulseaudio daemon


This post gave a several solutions to Daemon startup failed in Ubuntu and Linux Mint.

Often rebooting is enough to solve those kinds of issues.