Audacity 2.x and LAME

I have made the mistake of upgrading to 2.0.5
I have downloaded and installed LAME.
I cannot export to MP3 OR ANY OTHER format. I cannot find audacity.cfg (not even with search).
What, exactly, is the problem and the solution.
I get no help from the FAQ’s.
Running Win 7 Home Premium 64-bit.

OK. I found audacity.cfg The offending lines do NOT appear. The dll files are in Audacity Plug-ins and Lame For Audacity.
STILL cannot export (I could on the older version).

Why not? What happens when you try? How exactly are you exporting?
Try to describe step by step exactly what I need to do to reproduce the same thing that is happening on your computer.

If you mean lame_enc.dll, if may not be a good idea to have it in both places. If you want lame_enc.dll in the Audacity “Plug-Ins” folder, try uninstalling LAME For Audacity.

But the lame_enc.dll in the “Plug-Ins” folder must be the one from .


After I have edited my MP3, I try to export it, using Export under File.
I get a window telling me that not all applications open MP3.
Another, telling me there is already a file of the name, specified.
Another permitting me to edit “properties”.
A graph showing save @ 128.
When I re-open the file, the portion edited out is still there … ie no save to MP3.
I have done the whole LAME thing. The dll is correct and in place. The audacity.cfg has been checked and OK.
Still no save to MP3, or, it seems, to ANY OTHER format other than aup.

That is not an Audacity message, though there is a similar message in Audacity about saving Audacity Projects.
Please tell us the actual message.

It is inadvisable to overwrite files that are used in a project, but Audacity will allow you to do that.
As with other programs, overwriting an existing file will show a warning.
Overwriting Audacity Projects is not permitted as it cannot be done safely,
Again, please tell us the actual message.

Where was that? What did you press to get that?

I’ve no idea what that “graph” is. Does it have anything to do with Audacity?

We can’t see over your shoulder and the information you have given makes no sense to me. Please describe step by step what you are doing and please give the exact wording of error messages.

Please give the exact messages or attach an image of the message.

My guess is that you put a dot (period) in the file name. If you put a dot in the file name, you will see a warning that not all applications open “whatever you put after the last dot in the file name”.

To solve that, use underscore or space instead of dot. If you must use a dot in the file name, add “.mp3” (without quotes) at the end of the file name. So if the MP3 is to be called called “song.shanty.mp3” you must type exactly “song.shanty.mp3” in the file name box.

In Audacity, can you please choose Edit > Preferences, then choose “Libraries” on the left. Then look in the top right at “MP3 Library Version”. Does it say “MP3 export library not found” opposite “MP3 Library Version”? Or does it give a version number of lame_enc.dll?

If it gives a version number of lame_enc.dll then there is no reason you cannot export MP3.


However you look at it, the last one is a graph!

You are about to export a MP3 file with the name “Synthesized Bach in
W. Carlos Style -Stereo - YouTube1”.

Normally these files end in “.mp3”, and some programs will not open
files with nonstandard extensions.

Are you sure you want to export the file under this name?

Yes No

A file named “C:UsersPatrickMusicElectronic
or MoogOtherSynthesized Bach in W. Carlos Style -Stereo - YouTube1”
already exists. Replace?

Yes No

I forgot to capture the "form"for altering file info.

Syntesized Bach in W

Exporting entire file at 128 Kbps
||||||||||| <---- that being a green “graph”
Elapsed Time: 00:00:02

Remaining Time : 00:00:08

Stop Cancel

Someone, above, hit the head on the nail.

  1. Don’t save using the original name.
  2. Don’t reuse the original name in any way. In spite of brackets, stops, - signs etc the MP3 will work fine, BUT, Audacity will not permit them!

Thanks, that is clear now.

File names have two parts, the actual name, and the “file extension”.
The file extension is the part after the dot in the file name, for example, if you save a Microsoft Word document file with the name “letter_to_mum”, Microsoft Word will save it as “letter_to_mum.doc” or “letter_to_mum.docx” (depending on the version of MS Office). The letters “.doc” or “.docx” make up the file extension and they tell Windows what type of file it is.

The standard file extension for an MP3 file is “.mp3”.
In your example you have confused Audacity by entering the name: “Synthesized Bach in W. Carlos Style -Stereo - YouTube1”
Audacity sees the dot in the name and thinks that you want the letters after the dot to be the file extension.
Of course “. Carlos Style -Stereo - YouTube1” is not a valid file extension, and certainly not the standard file extension for an MP3 file, so Audacity warns you that "Normally these files end in “.mp3"”

The solution is simple, either don’t use dots in file names (highly recommended) or, if you must use a dot, ensure that you add the correct file extension to the end of the file name. Thus, for this example you could enter:
“Synthesized Bach in W Carlos Style -Stereo - YouTube1”
or you could enter:
“Synthesized Bach in W. Carlos Style -Stereo - YouTube1.mp3”

As long as there are no dots in the name that you enter, Audacity will automatically add the correct file extension.

This picture:

is showing your file being exported - The MP3 export is working. However, because you included a dot in the name, Windows will see the file extension as “. Carlos Style -Stereo - YouTube1” and Windows has no idea what that “file type” is. Windows needs the file extension to tell it what type of file it is.

Generally it is best to only use normal letters, numbers, underscore “_” and the minus sign “-” in file names.
See here for more information about file names:

There is nothing to stop you overwriting an original MP3 file if you want to. You must expect a program to warn you if you try to overwrite the original file.

Every time you rewrite an MP3 you degrade the quality further.

I think the default behaviour should be to force the standard extension for the file (MP3 in this case) even if the user added a dot in the file name.

Users who want to use non-standard extensions should have to turn that on somewhere, probably in a checkbox in the export dialogue.


That would probably be difficult to implement and even more difficult to give sensible warnings about “unusual” but “legal” file extensions. For example, it is perfectly correct to use the extension “.wav” for compressed audio formats supported by MS Audio Compression Manager (ACM) and similarly the file extension “.avi” is perfectly legal as the extension for RIFF WAV format.

Perhaps a workable solution is to list file extensions in the export dialogue rather than file types and for Audacity to assume the most common encoding for that file extension. For unusual combinations of file extension/encoding, the user would need to select a custom export option and supply the file extension.

Some programs have an option to “guess file format from extension”, so you either select a file extension and the program chooses the most likely format for that extension, or you enable “guess file format from extension” and include the extension in the file name.

Much of the confusion surrounding this issue is thanks to the Microsoft practice of hiding file extensions from users. :imp:

Initially, I had the same problem with Export as MP3 on a new Windows 7 64-bit laptop.
Installing Lame worked for me, and I can now export MP3.
I suggest uninstalling Lame and starting over.

lame_enc.dll will be in C:Program Files (x86)Lame For Audacity

Using Windows search, Audacity.cfg was found in C:UsersAppDataRoamingAudacity
… even though there appears to be no such folder as AppData

Right click on Audacity.cfg in the search results box, and open with WordPad (or other editor).
The “2 offending lines” appear near the end of the file.
I left them in, and it works just fine for me.

I don’t remember if I had to “locate” the “missing mp3 file” in Audacity, but probably not
since AppData does appear to exist.

Now I’m a Happy Camper,
Steve #2

I am not talking about Audacity making any decisions about what is legal that it doesn’t already make.

Just that the default behaviour would be that Audacity forces the same extension that it adds anyway if there is no dot added to the file name. So as Goldwave for example does, if you type “Song.shanty” when MP3 is the selected save type, then Audacity actually exports “Song.shanty.mp3”.

99% of users want that I guess, not to force some other extension. So what Goldwave and other editors do should be default. We get this problem complained of once or twice a week that users cannot understand the dialogue when they add a dot in the file name.

If the default “force file extension” option is switched off, then Audacity would behave as now and give you the warning about changing the extension if the extension was not in its “allowed” list.

I don’t think there is a burning need to change the current system where a number of extensions are accepted as “allowed” if the user adds them, for example if you choose “M4A (AAC) Files (FFmpeg)”, you can add .m4r extension and there will be no warning.

Hiding extensions doesn’t help, but Apple does the same by default (I updated the Manual FAQ to take that into account).


I’ve seen it come up quite often on the forum so I agree that it would be good to improve this.

What does Goldwave do if you enter “Song.shanty.mp3” as the file name and you export as an MP3 file?
What does Goldwave do if you enter “Song.shanty.mp3” as the file name and you export as a WAV file?
What does Goldwave do if you enter “Song.shanty.riff” as the file name and you export as a WAV file?

Goldwave “saves” MP3, not export :wink: but it does the same as Audacity - the saved file is “Song.shanty.mp3”.

Exports a WAV with MP3 extension. Bad. Audacity currently warns about that.

But I see no reason a “force extension” option would export a WAV with MP3 extension. As soon as there is any dot in the file name, Audacity would add another dot and the default extension for the selected file type at the end.

Exports the same Red Book WAV as in “Song.shanty.mp3”.


Apparently there are 2 subjects with the same name.
My post of Jan 13, 2014 5:44 pm got placed after Gale’s Jan 13, 2014 5:04 pm
instead where it belongs after Gale’s Jan 13, 2:26 pm.

The Forum Staff had a little discussion here about how to prevent the poster’s problem with “dots in the file name” happening so often. It was probably just about worth discussing it here in case a user had any immediate input on what should happen. I’ll lock the topic now.

I assume your post was moderated as you had not made many posts yet. This would mean it would not appear immediately.

Please post in if you think there is some issue.