Creating time delineated tracks while recording

Hello Forum,
I’m looking for a way (perhaps macro code) to set Audacity to create 5- or 10- minute tracks. I use Audacity to record live auction audio and that extends for several hours. It would be nice to have bit sized chunks (perhaps named by System Time or Run Length of recording) so we can easily find audio record of the disputed lots. I would like to be able to review a track after it completes to manage disputes during the sale, so I’m guessing I’d need to create a new track, record, and save the old track.

I’ve used Excel VBA, but I’m new to Audacity macros. I see how this can be done with the rull recording (post-recording) but cannot figure out how to create these while recording.

I’m using Audacity 2.3.0 on Windows 8.0 (will soon switch to Windows 10, so if there is a difference, please consider just Windows 10 for a response).

Audacity only does one thing at a time. You can record (that’s one thing), you can edit (that’s one thing), you can export the audio (that’s one thing). You can’t do multiple things at the same time.

One approach would be to make one long recording, and then split it into multiple files. See:

Hi Steve,
Ok. I can understand that.

I just tested having 2 windows of Audacity open. One file that has “finished” recording and another recording. I can modify (save/export) the first while the second continues. Once saved, I open a New (3rd) project and close the first. When the 2nd project has reached 10 minutes, I can stop that, quickly begin recording on the 3rd. Then I can save and export the 2nd. Repeat.

If I can do the actions manually, I should be able to create a macro to automate those actions (Stop, Create New, Record). I will miss a few seconds of audio but if I can save myself the headache of having to manually stop and start every 10 minutes, over the course of 8 hours, that would be worth it.

So let me ask you this question, which may a be all I need: what command sets a time limit. When track length = 600 seconds > Stop, Create New, Record. And are macros usable during recording or only during playback?


Have you tried that? How are you able to hear what you are doing in the second project while the first project is recording?

As far as I’m aware, Audacity macros have no way of switch from one project to another. That may be possible with a 3rd party automation application (such as

Thanks for the continued feedback.

Yes, I have been able to have 2 windows of Audacity open. Here’s how.

  1. Create a project and Record. Stop.
  2. Create New Project. Record.
  3. Return to the 1st Project and Save Project As.
  4. Export 1st Project to MP3.

At this point I am able to open a 3rd project. The 3rd must be opened while the 1st is still open or the menu commands are unavailable. This gives me a project to quickly begin recording when I stop the 2nd Project. Then I close the 1st.

Once I stop the 2nd, I immediately hit record on the 3rd. Then I go back to the 2nd and Save and export that Project. I open a 4th, close the 2nd and repeat.

An update on my macro experiments. So far I am able to create a macro that can record. Anything else I’ve added seems to either throw an error or just stops. I am unable to do anything related to a time reference. Such as 60 seconds. And I can’t seem to access Timer Record via the macro functions. That would solve some of my problems, perhaps.

I will try the AutoHotKey you mentioned. Again, my project is simply recording an auctioneer for 8 hours so we have an audio record in the event we need to settle a dispute. Not high level recordings at all. No track adjustments, no mixing, no filters. Just ugly raw audio. In the same way, I just need an ugly raw macro that will record for 10 minutes, stop and start a new recording that will run for 10 minutes. Otherwise, I’ll use the manual process I discussed above.

I think a better approach would be to use a command line recorder that writes direct to disk (such as SoX) which could then be automated with a simple script or even the Task Scheduler.

or alternatively, just make one 8 hour recording and cut it up as you wish after the recording is finished.

I personally would be making a “clean” recording on a separate recorder/computer while the main computer is going through all those gymnastics.

I can see two human problems: You make one wrong move at the wrong time and the machine freezes. And you will never explain to anybody else how to do that.

The elves on the forum experience billions of people trying to make one single, simple recording and having evil things happen. Audacity doesn’t support running multiple instances of itself. So in case it wasn’t clear, nobody here is going to guarantee recording services. If you have failures, we will try to get you out of trouble, but the first line of recovery is to play that separate, long, legacy recording.