Mystery fix!

I’m on a 2104 Mac Air, upgraded to High Sierra (boy, do I ever regret that), using Audacity 2.2.1.

Since upgrading Audacity I’ve been unable to open sound files by dragging and dropping them onto the Audacity icon, or clicking on them - only by opening Audacity and importing them.

And in new Audacity sessions, “Open Recent” was blank - none of my recent activity was shown there.

Today, both of these problems have gone away! I can click on an .aup or a .wav and it opens right up, starting the app if it’s not open yet. And my recent sessions are showing up under “Open Recent”.

Short of divine intervention - what the heck happened? I’m pleased but mystified.

(Also can’t find a question about this I swear I posted yesterday, but no matter- it’s fixed now!)

Do you have the Mac set to show you filename extensions? That makes almost no difference when everything is working normally, but it’s terrifically important when something goes wrong.

Right click (or control click) a sound file > Get INFO. Scroll down to where it says: Open this type of file with: [_________]
Put Audacity in there. Then click [X]Open all similar files the same way.

I have that set for WAV and MP3.


2104 Mac Air, upgraded to High Sierra (boy, do I ever regret that)

MacBook Air. So am I. A little newer.

Why do you regret that? I’ve been avoiding the upgrade from El Capitan 10.11.6. My sister and I have similar machines and she hasn’t upgraded, either.

I just recently upgraded my television software and the off-air receiver vanished. No longer supported. Sorry.

Somebody had a stand-alone copy of the older software and I’m back in business.


Yes, that’s the default I’ve set. In fact, my Audio Hijack app even has the Audacity icon under “Edit in”.

So when it was working, then when it stopped working, then again when it resumed working, that hadn’t changed.

Weird, huh?

As for High Sierra: it slowed everything to a crawl. I’ve done some troubleshooting; the single best advice I found was to disable Siri, which did speed things up. But nothing I run - Thunderbird especially - is still much slower then before the alleged upgrade.

Photos is especially bad. Lots of spinning beachballs. I’ve found complaints all over the internet, but no solutions. It especially hangs in the midst of editing/saving photos - just. sits. there.

Apparently if I used Time Machine for my backup, I could jump back to Sierra. But I use Carbonite so I’m stuck. Every day I regret updating.

Sierra and High Sierra both worked fine for me on my Macbook Pro after upgrading from El Capitan, with Audacity (2-3 hour projects) - and photo editing in Photoshop - and Nero for making simple movies.

I’m now on 10.13.3 High Sierra and that’s fine too.


spinning beachballs.

That may be a clue right there. You get a SBBOD when your job takes longer than the system is expecting. So something in the system is expecting the job to take the normal amount of time.

Do you have a virus App? My sister does and I’m paying attention for her to have problems I don’t have.

Do you keep Activity Monitor handy? What does it say when you start having problems? I found an Adobe licensing app nestled down in the Dock slowly taking up 150% of the processor when I killed it. Yes, I am properly licensed.

There was a recent “mystery file” that just starts replicating itself apparently without end. That one responded to a Google search. It’s good to have some idea what all those files and threads are doing.

I’m not sure if this is current or not, but I think it’s still true Macs like to “tidy up” the drive if you leave them active at 0300, 0400, and 0500 hours. That’s from its Linux/UNIX heritage. Probably smoke and floobydust, but maybe not.

I’ve found complaints all over the internet, but no solutions.

I think there’s a law about that. If you get your machine to work you have to vanish and not tell anybody how you did it.

Do you use iCloud? That’s famous for affecting performance.


Well, I’m embarrassed. I’m one of those people who abandon old questions. I’m making a point these days of hitting “Notify me when a reply is posted” - I used to just monitor the board for info. My apologies for a number of questions I haven’t tended to!

If anyone else has the SBBOD issue: I discovered that my Carbonite app was slowing my entire system down. Uninstalling it made quite a difference.

Oddly, having updated so much since this question was initially posted - new laptop, moved to Catalina, updated Audacity - I still have to click Import to get mp3’s and wav’s to open in Audacity. It’s clunky but I make it work.