It's known that 1.3.5 crashes on Vista if you click Audio Device info when there is no connected and enabled audio device. It's fixed in our development builds, as noted on our Known Issues
You can get a fixed development build here
As you will have seen at:http://audacityteam.org/wiki/index.php? ... s_Vista_OS
"Recording Device" in the Audio I/O Preferences is the only place in Audacity where you can choose the recording source. You need to go to the Vista control panel, connect the device you want to record with such as a microphone, and then select and enable it as described here
If you've already done that (including showing Disabled and Disconnected devices) and there are still no recording devices in the Control Panel, (or if there are, but Audacity still does not see them) then you don't have a viable sound device. I would suggest:
* uninstalling the sound device via Device Manager
* reinstalling the sound device from the drivers CD that came with the computer
* go back to the Control Panel and connect, select and enable a working input device
* If Audacity cannot see it, then update the sound device drivers via Device Manager.
* If that makes no difference, or if no updates are available, go to the web site of the manufacturer of the sound device (or possibly that of the motherboard manufacturer if you are using motherboard sound rather than a PCI sound card).
Updating sound drivers is described here
If you are still having problems after that, please tell us the name of the sound device you are trying to record with, and what you are trying to record. If you are only interested in recording computer playback, your sound device may not support this anyway, in which case you need other solutions.