HElp - Selecting audio on new 2.1.2


I am using audacity on a macbook air on os X el Capitan and i updated to the newest software last night. Now I cannot drag my cursor to select the audio which i need to do to edit the tracks, I could do this before.

Selection Tool Selection Tool from Tools Toolbar is selected, or press F1 on your keyboard. Left-click to place the cursor on the track’s waveform, keep holding the left mouse button, drag the mouse in either direction then release the button.
Now it just stops at the end of the track that is shown in the window, it won’t scan along the track…

Anyone have any advice??

You updated to El Capitan or you updated to Audacity 2.1.2? And from what?


I was already on El Capitan and I upgraded my audacity software to 2.1.2

I think I was on 1.8 before

So you basically drag-select and it refuses to drag off the screen. Mine won’t either.

You can get closer with Command-3 which will zoom out the blue waves so more of them are in the window. You can also Command-F to put the whole show in the window, and then zoom into the portion you actually want to work on.

Drag-select a portion larger than the area of interest, zoom into it with Command-E and then do your drag-select. That’s how I do it and I never noticed that the timeline (blue waves) won’t follow me.

In the toolbox, you should have the I-Beam selected. I think there is a version 2.1.2 thing about this I need to look up.


Thank you for your tips! I will try that.

I record podcasts and audio books so it’s sometimes much easier for me to drag along for sentences and paragraphs rather than isolated editing. But I’ll give that a try!!

Thank you

There are hundreds of zoom options, but I only ever use three. That and a couple of edit tricks.

Zoom (Mac)
– Drag-select something on the timeline and zoom into it. Command-E
– Zoom out a little bit. Command-3
– Zoom out full. Command-F

– Shift-ScrollWheel (or Shift-Two Finger Touchpad on my machine) will shift the timeline view left and right (sooner and later).

Change the timeline so it doesn’t shift by itself:
– Audacity > Preferences > Tracks > [_] Update display while playing. (de-select)
…Note: Update Display is good during recording.


You can still drag-select leftwards and scroll, but not rightwards.


But you can drag and select off-window both leftwards and rightwards on Windows (W10 and W7 dormerly) - byr yes my new Mac with El Capitan will not allow me to drag select off-window.

Should this be logged as a bug for Macs on Audacity Bugzilla :question:


I added it as soon as it was originally reported


Not the dreaded “B” word…


Thank you for those shortcuts!! I will write them down and try them :slight_smile:

Gale- yes it words leftwards but not rightwards.

Thank you everyone!