Audicity doesn't show red, yellow, green icons

I have Windows 8.1 and just installed Audacity 2.0.3. Windows recognizes the cassette device, but when I start Audacity and press play, I don’t get the 3 buttons on top left. Nothing happens, no meters show activity, etc. Any suggestions? Thank you.

Try the current 2.1.1 version of Audacity from here:

In case your current version is an unofficial modified version, I’d suggest that you completely uninstall that version first and run a full malware (antivirus) scan before installing the correct version.

During the installation of Audacity 2.1.1, select the option to “Reset Preferences”.

Thank you; I’ll try your suggestion and post back the results.

Although I certainly appreciate your advice, and uninstalled 2.0.3 and installed 2.1.1 and reset preferences, Audacity won’t work. When I use device manager, it shows the device is plugged in, and when I select sounds and turn on the device the sound bar shows. I guess I need to return the device, an EZCAP USB cassette capture, and see if I can find something else. I have so many old cassettes with great music, I’d like to save them on cd, dvd, usb flash drice, whatever. Again, thank you.

So what is the problem? What doesn’t work?
(we can’t see over your shoulder so you need to tell us exactly what you are doing and exactly what is happening.).

Have you tried restarting Audacity with the EZCAP plugged in?

If that does not help, try following the instructions in the green box “Detecting USB and Firewire devices” here:

What red, yellow and green icons are you looking for? This tutorial may help: Recording with USB turntables or USB cassette decks.


Thank you. I was finally able to play and record the cassette due to reading the answers on this forum and another website. The Audacity manual is very lacking and the 3 icons I referred to, supposedly on the top left portion, don’t exist apparently, except in the manual. Supposedly they are record, pause, stop, but reading different posts I found to use the toolbar to do this. When I did, I was able to succeed. Your 2 references also gave me more insight way much better than the Audacity manual. Thanks to all of you that replied to a simple problem.

This is the current Audacity 2.1.1 manual:
What manual are you referring to?

The two references I gave are the Audacity Manual (currently for version 2.1.1).


Apparently, when I installed V2.0.3, somewhere reading there was a download site for a manual in PDF format. It is certainly different than the 2.1.1 online manual. On page 6 of the manual, it clearly shows the 3 buttons I referred to, and as one goes down the manual, the colors change. I assumed these are the ones to use, and I was wrong. I will delete that manual and use the online version if I need assistance
aud 2.JPG
aud 1.JPG

That image is of Mac OS X and shows their red/yellow/green window buttons. You are on Windows.


Ah ha, it all comes clear :slight_smile:

The PDF manual that you have been looking at is not an official manual for Audacity. The screenshots have been made on a Mac computer and the “red, yellow, green icons” are the (standard Mac OS X) buttons for resizing the window. They are the Mac equivalent of the “minimize/maximize/restore/close” buttons in the top right corner of window in MS Windows.

If you installed Audacity with the recommended installer, then the correct manual will be available in the Audacity Help menu.