Disable the Ability to Edit?

Hey there, I’m an IT for a school district and I have a language class which requires the students to record themselves for test, speaking whichever language class they are in. The school has been using the built in Sound Recorder for Windows OS forever and it’s always been giving them problems.

I suggested using Audacity due to my own personal experience with the program for several years and assured it’s usage and quality. However they have a problem with Audacity giving the students the ability to edit the tracks. I know we can hide the tabs and such, but these kids are smart and they’ll figure out how to bring it back. My question; is there anyway for me to disable the ability to edit on a whole and only record? It kinda defeats the whole purpose for Audacity, but the program is simply way more stable and dependable than Sound Recorder. Thanks.

As you say, disabling editing in an audio editor contradicts its raison d’etre.
You could prevent editing of the pre-recorded tracks by making them read only, but I can’t think of any way to prevent editing of tracks which the students record.

Give them keyboards that only have the “R” key and “Spacebar” and no mouse :confused:
Only joking. (“R” is the keyboard shortcut for Record, and “Space” is the shortcut for Play and Stop).

If I recall correctly, there is a way to disable commands by creating a special “language file”.
I don’t recall the exact details - I’ll see if I can find it…

OK, I’ve never tried this myself, but here are the instructions: Audacity Manual

Modern versions of Sound Recorder (for Vista and later) can’t record to WAV but record to disk temp space, so I really can’t understand it being unstable.

If you’re on XP, yes that records to RAM, but if you’re on XP all bets are off anyway because Microsoft no longer support that OS. If you are on XP you could use this customised slightly simpler version of Audacity 1.2.6 by one of the Audacity developers: http://web.archive.org/web/20110909004027/http://www.audiotouch.com.au/files/Audacity_Voice-win-1.2.6a11.exe. I really would not use it on Vista or later.

Have you considered writing a modified audacity.cfg (for current Audacity) at user logon with the toolbars you don’t want removed?


Hah, you know I wonder why a lot of basic software and hardware keep failing me at my school sites. Really, a lot of variables could be the root of the issues; the computer parts itself are often old and reused, kids and teachers are possibly doing unsafe browsing picking up more problems, the drivers for the microphone headsets are sometimes faulty or who knows!

Thanks for the suggestions however, I’ll definitely check out that Wiki link to see what I can do.