cannot play or record anything on Audacity Windows 10

I have been using Audacity for years without any problems. Today I got an error message “Error while opening sound device. Please check the recording / playback device settings and the project sample rate.” I have never seen this message before. I checked ALL the help posts about the topic and have taken all the recommended steps and nothing will fix it. I’ve tried several recording devices and speakers/ headphones, both internal and external. I have uninstalled and re-installed both Audacity and LAME. Nothing is helping. Was there a recent Windows 10 update that messes up Audacity? What can I do to fix it? I’m not an expert, I don’t know what else to do. Please help.
Windows version: 10
Audacity version: 2.1.0 - .exe installer

What is your sound device? What is the show? What are you recording?

uninstalled and re-installed both Audacity

Did you Reset Audacity? Reinstalling Audacity doesn’t reset your preferences and settings. There is a selection in the Windows install which asks you if you want to reset those, too. Say yes.


You might also consider upgrading to Audacity 2.1.2


It’s no use trying random playback and recording devices. You have to choose the devices you are connected to and that you want to use.

Tell us what playback and recording devices you are trying to use. If the device you want to use connects to the computer via a USB cable, try reconnecting the cable tightly at both ends then using Transport > Rescan Audio Devices at the top in the Audacity menus.

If you need more help, go to Help > Audio Device Info… top right of Audacity and save that information. Attach it here.
Please see how to attach files to forum posts.