All iCloud files corrupted

I was using audacity to view sound recordings in a .wav format in a spectrogram and I use audacity for sound research. I was opening files in audacity and suddenly my local drive and iCloud Drive corrupted. All my .mp4 and .jpeg files have disappeared. My iCloud Drive is not nearly as full and my local drive has disappeared. When I check for the missing files I can’t find anything. For some files I can see the pictures embedded as the .wav file picture but then can’t access it. I have no idea how this could happen and Ive been in contact with apple and they are not sure either.

If anyone knows a solution or has had this issue please let me know as this is all my data collection for a research project over 2 months.

Thank you.

Modern version of Audacity (3.0 and onward) always copy the data to a temporary project and never touch the original after it made the copy. So unless you have been exporting the files again, it’s extremely unlikely that Audacity has been corrupting them.

If I read Suddenly Empty Folders in iCloud (Files D… - Apple Community correctly, there should be a “recently deleted” menu item somewhere in iCloud which you can try to recover them. (I’ve never used iCloud personally)

Since (s)he wrote “my local drive and iCloud Drive corrupted”, I think it has nothing to do with iCloud directly - so it wouldm’t help much to “undelete” only the files on the iCloud drive. There are probably also files on the local disk missing or corrupted.

Since apparently not only music files are involved, but also images (JPEG), I don’t think that Audacity has done anything with the files. In earlier times, I would have recommended “Disk Warrior” to rebuild the disks directory - apparently it still should work with macOS 14 (Sonoma).

I hope you have a recent backup of your important files…

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