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ESPEAKUP(8) System Manager's Manual ESPEAKUP(8)


espeakup - connect Speakup to the espeak-ng TTS engine


espeakup [--pid-path=path] [--alsa-volume] [--default-voice=[voicename]] [--debug] [--help] [--version]


Set the full path for the pid file espeakup uses when in daemon mode.
Drive the ALSA volume. useful for live environments where volume adjustments maybe impossible.
Set the espeak-ng voice to be used by default.
run in the foreground, rather than becoming a daemon process.
display a brief help message and exit.
output version information and exit.


espeakup bridges the gap between two tools: the Speakup screen review system and the espeak-ng text-to-speech engine. Each of these tools performs a well-defined task.

Speakup is a kernel-based screen reader for the Linux console. It extracts and processes the text that is displayed on the foreground virtual console. It supports several hardware based speech synthesizers directly. However, since it is in kernel space, it cannot support a software speech synthesizer directly since these are in user space.

espeak-ng is a popular software speech synthesizer. It is small, light weight, very responsive, and supports multiple languages. espeakup is a connector which will read text sent to it by speakup and forward it to espeak-ng. This allows Speakup to use espeak-ng as its speech synthesizer.

espeakup is a daemon. Typically, it is started at boot time, and it terminates when the system is halted or rebooted. It should be started by the system's init scripts. This process varies among Linux distributions, but the details are usually managed by the person who packaged espeakup for your distribution. From the perspective of an average user, espeakup's operation is invisible.


If you find a bug, please create a github issue You might also consider mentioning it on the mailing list for the Speakup screenreader. Visit list page to learn more about the mailing list.


For more information about Speakup, visit its homepage

espeak-ng can be found at github


William Hubbs is the author of espeakup.

This manual page was written by Chris Brannon

current authors and maintainers can be found at github

March 2024