Lost Large Chunks of Audio Recording

I’m working with Audacity 2.1.0 on Windows 10 Home Edition.

I had recorded an hour of podcast audio for my second episode on Audacity, and spent about two hours yesterday editing said podcast. I imported my guest’s audio as an MP3. At the end of the night, I saved my project as a copy of the original project, so that I had both my original audio recording and a separate project for working. When I booted up this morning, I received a notification that much of my audio was lost, and I had the choice of turning those parts into silence, muting them, or closing the project immediately without further changes.

When I went to start over with the original recording, I was met with another similar message: "Project check of [file name] folder found 1458 orphan block file(s). These files are unused by this project, but might belong to other projects. They are doing no harm and are small. In addition to this notification, I noticed that about 50% of my audio has been erased completely, much of it at the end of in the middle of sentences. Unfortunately, this means that both my audio and my guest’s are now unusable.

Is there a way to prevent this from occurring in the future? Has anyone encountered anything similar? I would love some assistance and guidance on this error so that I can avoid it in the future. Thank you for your help.

I don’t know how to avoid them, but I know how to sidestep them. Export all original work as WAV (Microsoft) 16-bit sound files. Assuming your shows are relatively simple, you can Export WAV versions of edits, too. WAV doesn’t support mutliple tracks and other tricks.

Neither WAV nor Audacity Projects support UNDO.

In your specific case, you would be opening up your voice WAV backups and your guest WAV backups and keep working. The only thing lost would be the editing time for the failed Projects.

Audacity 2.1.0 on Windows 10

There are early versions of Audacity which had a damaged Save As… process. I don’t remember the particulars, but it’s a pretty good idea to use the current supported Audacity which is 2.3.2

I imported my guest’s audio as an MP3.

That’s not the best idea. MP3 seems to be a universal sound format which can do anything, but it can’t do editing or production very well. You can’t make an MP3 from another MP3 without compression sound damage. The damage is unavoidable and permanent.

Use WAV (Microsoft) 16-bit for steps in the middle. Only create the MP3 of the final mix for posting or sharing, and only do it after you make a WAV of the final.

We should wait for the senior elves to figure out what’s wrong.


I’m going to keep checking this thread for a few days, but I really appreciate the advice. I’m new to this but love the content I produce, so your help is invaluable. Thanks so much!