Can't Write/Read Error While Recording

I’m on Windows 8.1, got the .exe, and I’m using Audacity 2.0.5.

I’ve been using Audacity on both Linux and Windows for a few years now, but while recording the other day I noticed that the waveform would appear at the cursor but would disappear after the cursor. I stopped the recording and found that the audio stopped recording at 31 minutes. I attempted to save the recording and start a new recording, but I received an error message that Audacity either didn’t have enough disk space or couldn’t write to disk. If I attempt to record on Audacity now, it says there’s over 500 hours of available disk space. I want to try another recording, but I’m concerned about running into that error again. Any ideas why it happened and what I can do to fix it? I’ve checked google and can’t find any pertinent info.

Audacity may be complaining about not being able to write to the space it finds empty. I believe that’s what Audacity does when it can’t write the live temporary recording files to disk.

It’s also possible your virus program is protecting you from all those evil AU files.

I can’t find a FAQ that deals with this. We may need to wait for another elf.


Recorded waves appearing then disappearing does need a FAQ. It will be the next FAQ I write, if no-one else does it first.

If you look at Help > Show Log… it will probably say it cannot read the AU files it needs to read in order to save the project.

The answer is probably as Koz said. In other words, look at Edit > Preferences… then “Directories”. This shows the temporary folder Audacity records to before you save the project. Make sure you have permission to write to that folder. If that folder has “1.2” in its name, that might confuse older Audacity (the current Audacity is 2.1.1 from

To solve this, you could try creating another temporary folder in Explorer for Audacity to use. Don’t use “temp” in the name of that folder, then type the path to that folder into Directories Preferences and OK. If an anti-virus or cleanup app is deleting your recordings, leaving “temp” out of the folder name will solve that. If you have Norton, you can instead turn off its Windows temporary file cleaner.

Another solution would be to save an Audacity project before recording, and just choose a directory you have permission to write to.