Can't open .aup file

2.0.5 on Mac OS 10.9.3

I received a .aup file via email. It did not come with a data folder. When I try to open the .aup file (by double clicking on the file, or file>open, or file>import>audio, or file>import>raw) I get the error message “Error Opening Project. Couldn’t find the project data folder: [file name]”

Is there any way to open this file as is? Or, do I need to have the sender attach the data folder in addition to the .aup file? Or have the sender export it to MP3, etc. prior to emailing it?

Thanks in advance for your reply :slight_smile:

The purpose of the AUP file is to tell Audacity exactly what to do with the contents of the _DATA folder.


The _data folder is very large. The user can send you a WAV file instead but that is also very large. If you want the audio in lossless quality, e-mail will not be suitable because there are limits to the size of attachments that you can send. You can exchange files on Dropbox or similar services instead.

MP3 or a “Compressed Copy of Project” may be small enough to e-mail if you don’t mind losing quality.

See Sending your work to others - Audacity Wiki . That page will move to the Audacity Manual from 2.0.6 onwards.


Yahoo mail, for one example, has an attachment limit of 25MB. That’s about five minutes of excellent quality mono audio. As above, you can send billions of minutes of MP3, you just can’t edit them later without creating multiple-pass sound damage.


Thank you!

I’m just looking to receive a basic quality copy of a 60-90 minute interview-- is that too large to e-mail if in MP3? I don’t need to edit or do anything with the file besides listen to it :slight_smile: However, the sender is telling me that I’m the only one who has had trouble opening .aup files that he’s emailed. I don’t understand how any of his files could be opened if he’s not including the data file. Anyway, we’ll see what happens.

The Wiki page gives the details .

Reasonable quality is 128 kbps stereo MP3 or 64 kbps mono. 128 kbps for 90 minutes is 90 MB and 64 kbps for 90 minutes is 45 MB. Both those are likely to be too large for e-mail.

32 kbps for 90 minutes would be 22.5 MB, but could still be honky quality even in mono and might still be too large to e-mail.

So it is better to learn about Dropbox and similar services.


the sender is telling me that I’m the only one who has had trouble opening .aup files that he’s emailed.

I think the sender is blowing smoke or they’re being told the wrong information. The AUP file is a list of instructions in semi-English words. You can open it up in TextEdit and read it. It’s not a sound file.

They can be very tiny and they will easily go through an email system, but without the associated _DATA folder, there’s no show there. An alternative to an on-line service is to Overnight® a USB thumbdrive.


This is more like it looks when you open a music file in TextEdit (Attached).

People who do audio (or video) production very quickly run out of the ability to email work around.

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