Cannot save data recorded, how can I fix it

I have been using Audacity 1.3 for a few years, mostly to record music off the radio, my system is Windows 7 Home Premium and up to recently all was working fine, but since early 2015 have had problem that if I record 1 hour programme and then try to save, it will only work on rare occasions, but normally informs me that it cannot save as either disc is full or corruption (at least that is what I recall). When I check the recorded programme I often find that first 10 or 20 minutes have been lost. In the last week I have downloaded Audacity 2.1.0 to replace 1.3 but matters have not improved. Please could you help? Have to say am over 65 and have a fair understanding but not as good as the youngsters.

Chris Johnson

I note you didn’t assure us beyond doubt that your disk is not full. It can be close to full and have problems, too, so anybody doing production in audio or video is urged strongly to keep a significant portion of the drive free and defragmented.

It’s also significant that you said The Magic Words: “I didn’t change anything and it just stopped working.” Classic drive filling up.

Have you ever done a disk check and manual defragment? Maybe it’s time. I had dominion over a Win7 machine at work and every so often I would take it off-line and make sure everything was spinning OK. I don’t remember how to get into the Disk Check and Defragment on Win7. It’s been too long.

You can get into trouble by including punctuation marks in the filenames, but that won’t make damaged, partial recordings.

Win7 is supposed to defragment itself, but I understand that only happens if you leave the machine on overnight. I don’t think it’s a continuous process.

We ask people to tell us total Drivespace and either Used or Available. An actual number is good here, not just “enough.”

Let us know.


Sorry forgot to include that info, have had a new 1TB hard drive fitted as previous drive had filled up and the system shows 500gb free now.

Right-click over the drive in Explorer > Properties, then click the “Tools” tab.

Windows will attempt it overnight assuming you don’t change the schedule, but if it misses the schedule because the machine is off, it will then defragment in any idle time when the computer is on.

So it will only fail to defragment automatically if your computer is always busy when on.


Are you talking about saving Audacity AUP projects or exporting files? Exporting sometimes works OK if you see an error when trying to save a project.

However if you are losing the blue waves inside Audacity before you save or export, then probably you have a cleanup application deleting your recordings for you. Norton is a known offender.

If that is the problem, File > Save Project As… before recording and save to your Desktop.

If you don’t want to save a project, Edit > Preferences… then the Directories section. In the “Location” box, type in the path to a folder you have permission to write to. Don’t choose a folder that has temp or tmp in its name.