Lost my audio files when I downloaded to Dropbox

So I have just recorded some audio on audacity and wanted to export it. However, my computer was running low on memory space so I moved a bunch of files to dropbox. I accidentally moved the file containing my audacity audio that I had open and was working with. Now it’s gone from my computer and dropbox.

I was able to find hundreds of small files that contain short clips of the audio but that would be like trying to fit a puzzle back together. The .aup file shows up in dropbox but when I try and open it in Audacity says “couldn’t find the project data folder…”

Is there any hope of recovering those hundreds of small audio files back into the original audio file? FYI I’m not very techy at all.

Audacity hates editing with and even connecting to internet drives. Make a pile of files you want to move and store them on your local machine first. Close Audacity, and then open DropBox and push the files around.

Same thing backwards. Move your files to the local machine, close the connection and then open up Audacity.

You are looking at the little 6-second snippets that the early Audacity kept in your _data folder. If you never modified or edited that show, you might be able to use the file time and date tags to re–assemble it. If it’s a stereo show, the snippets go left-right-left-right. The file names are intentionally scrambled. If this project is an edit. You’re stuck.

Audacity assumes any drive it can see can be used for its most difficult, critical, and delicate jobs. Any drive outside of the machine’s internal drive is going to fail, some faster than others.


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Just in case I went too fast. A Legacy Audacity Project is an aup file and a _data folder.


This is an actual working _data folder from an old production.

Screen Shot 2024-02-02 at 17.13.15

The aup file tells Audacity what to do with all those little sound files. The aup file is silent.


So I was able to find a .aug file on my pc and when I opened that in Audacity it looked as if my computer was frozen for about 5 minutes and then voila, all the audio was back in it’s place in its entirety! So relieved!

While you’re being relieved, File > Export the show or shows as perfect quality WAV sound files for safety backups. Audacity Projects can do some pretty amazing things with excellent quality, but Audacity Projects are also brittle and easily damaged.


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