Audacity 2.3.3 on Win 10 is crashing when opening AUP files

There have been two big changes since I last opened these projects:

  1. I upgraded my Win 7 Ultimate x64 to Win 10 Premium x64
  2. I switched from a hard drive to an SSD for my system disk (including apps).

Almost, but not all, of my archived AUP files cause Audacity 2.3.3 to crash upon opening. Windows presents a message asking if I want to debug the crash. This in turn opens Visual Studio. VS then presents the window below. That’s the extent of my ability to diagnose this.

What’s particularly odd is that I can successfully open the same AUP file from a backup. I then save it back to the original location as “_NEW” and it will reopen just fine.

It’s not just one project file; the last three have all been exactly the same issue. Any ideas on what is going on here?


I love SSDs. Fast as can be, no heat and they’re vibration resistant. One note, they’re a good deal more sensitive to filling up because of the internal housekeeping they do, so don’t run one maxed out.

How did you get from your old drive to the new one?

Back out to 10,000 feet. What’s common about the ones that will open? They’re really short? Don’t leave anything out. All their filenames start with “A”? They were all created an even number of months ago? Symptom grouping is an art form.

How are you opening the shows? Double click the AUP file? Drag a show into an open Audacity workspace?

What are the shows? How complicated are they? Multiple tracks and hundreds of effects?


Thanks for your reply. I used a disk cloner; I think AOMEI.

I attempted to open the AUP files by double-click, then by “Open” from within Audacity.

These are not complex projects: stereo needledrops plus track information.

I will look for other similarities, but none are obvious right now.

I got nothing, but I’m a Mac elf. We can wait for one of the Windows people to post.


I don’t think the SSD had anything to do with it, but Windows 10 is a lot more picky about the software it runs and what it connects to. I think you ran into Microsoft security services.


Are you a refugee from the great 2020-01-14 Windows 7 support deadline?


You could try running sfc /scannow from an admin command prompt windows just in case something you have cloned is interfering with the new operating system. You could also check general file integrity ( as opposed to system files ) by using the error checking tool available from the properties dialogue for the drive holding your aup files.

Ok, I’ll try these things and reply if any improvement. FWIW, here are crash details:


Try updating “Microsoft Visual C++ Redistributable”. You can get the latest version from Microsoft here:
The version that you need is the file “vc_redist.x86.exe” (Audacity is a 32-bit application on Windows).
Reboot the computer after running the installer.

Thanks, since I’m running a 64-bit system, should I install both the x86 and x64 versions?

I think you just need the 32-bit version.

I had high hopes, but this did not solve the problem.

Another oddity…

Someone above remarked that maybe the problem has something to do with the filename. I found an AUP that crashed, and opened the backup. I attempted to save the backup to the original location using the original filename. Audacity asked if I really wanted to overwrite the original file, and I said “Yes”. At which point, Audacity threw a message that the original disk was full (which was not true) and the action could not be completed. I checked the original file folder and found that the original “data” folder was gone, but the original AUP was still there. I deleted the AUP and ran the “Save As” function again; this time it worked. The newly saved AUP file under the original filename thereafter would open fine.

Did it fix the uctrbase.dll problem?

Audacity threw a message that the original disk was full … and the action could not be completed

That can happen if you violate good filename hygiene.

Upper Case, lower case, numbers, -dash- and underscore. No other characters in a filename. Use ISO standard dates. Today is 2020-01-12. Not 1/12/20. No slashmarks in a filename.

It gets better. The name of the show is burned into the AUP file.

So you can’t just go ripping through your Projects changing the names.


No, same crash.

The filename was “Daphnis_32-44.AUP”.

What’s confusing us is the crash. There are a lot of errors having to do with “I can’t do this,” or “I can’t open that.” There are few errors that can cause Audacity to die.

I would reinstall Audacity. Delete the existing app and take out the preferences folders. Download and install it fresh.

I don’t know where the preferences folders are for Windows, but if you don’t delete them, most of the Audacity environment will just come straight back. They’re designed to make upgrading easy.



Screen Shot 2020-01-12 at 15.13.26.png

Ok, I will save that as a last resort. At this point, I’ve recovered from backup all of the projects that were at issue. I’ll post back if any further problems. Thanks for the help!