Audacity won't open .aup files (Audacity 2.0.3)

I have a couple of projects saved on my computer as .aup files, however they won’t open and instead i get a pop-up box saying

"Audacity did not recognize the type of the file … If it is uncompressed, try importing it using “Import Raw”

So I went onto "Raw Data and while it opened all that was there was a clip maybe a second long with no sound and the one clicky noise.

I’ve checked the audacity file to make sure the _data folders are there for both projects and they are, Does anyone have any other ideas? Perhaps theres another program I can use to attempt to convert the file to .mp3 or .WAV? Or if theres another way of getting into the file on Audacity, any help would be appreciated.

AUP is a text file. All the audio is contained in the_DATA folder. AUP is the list of instructions what to do with all that stuff in the _DATA folder.

Close Audacity. Double click one of the AUP files. What happens?

Were the shows made in Audacity 2.0.3? Did you do a Windows update between the two times?


I closed Audacity and reopened it, the same message pops up. There’s been no windows updates between the time I recorded and now, I’ve only got one version of Audacity on my computer.

I closed Audacity and reopened it

That’s not it. Close Audacity, double click the AUP file and let Windows figure out what to do. That’s the valuable error message.


Sorry, thats what I meant. I closed Audacity down, went onto my documents and opened the file from there without opening the program first. It still gave me the error message…

So it is still an AUP file, but possibly damaged.

Back to the AUP file. Right-Click > Open with TextEdit, NotePad or whatever your text editor is (don’t let the edit save anything).

This is a graphic version of a real aup file. I spread it out and added spaces for clarity. Yours won’t have that, but the first couple of text lines should be very similar. Audacity projects are expected to open in newer versions of Audacity, so they can’t be too far off from each other.

Is yours similar?


I opened up the AUP file in Notepad and it was completely blank

That’s the Audacity version of You Have No Show. The sound pieces inside the _DATA folder that make up the show are intentionally scrambled, so without the AUP file, it’s just a basket of junk.

Are those productions edit masters? Did you do editing, cutting, filters and effects before you saved the Project? If you did, that’s the end of the world. If those are simple recordings with no editing, you may be able to use the Disaster Recovery Tools.


This sometimes happens when somebody saves a Project but shuts down the computer or Audacity before they get done. The AUP file is the last to be created, so shutdown cuts the AUP file off. Another possibility is an aggressive virus protection program that “ate” the AUP file.


Koz, that is not the best link to give users when we know the AUP or AUTOSAVE file is lost or damaged.

Here is the link


That doesn’t appear in the Subject Index, Managing Projects or Advanced Topics.

Didn’t we do this dance once before? It’s buried where no one will ever find it?


The Subject Index has not been worked on for years.

I think “Recovering crashes manually” is linked to acceptably and does not absolutely need a link on the front page of the Manual. See especially the FAQ that links to it

That “improved” FAQ will be in the next 2.1.3 Manual.

If we get a search box in the online Manual for 2.1.3 which I am pressing for, that will also help greatly.


I followed the path it gives me and it takes me to Appdata > Local however it then wants me to go on the Audacity folder in that file, there is no Audacity folder, only in Roaming. And there are a few auto saves in there but from 2014…

If you already saved your projects successfully before the problem happened, there won’t be any temporary data because all the data is kept in the _data folders after that first save.

You said you had found the _data folders for those projects, so you can skip straight to the green boxes at

But there is no point unless these were recordings that you never edited. If the data is anything else, it cannot be recovered in the correct order, except by dragging the AU files into Audacity from the _data folders and trying to piece them together in Audacity. That will be an impossible task unless they are very short projects.