Option to remove prompt when shutting a new unsaved project

not saving a new project

I run into this constantly. The Party Line is Audacity is not a WAV editor and if you don’t save a Project, Audacity thinks you haven’t done any useful work and you should be warned.

I used to think if you opened a sound file but didn’t do anything to it and then closed, Audacity will not warn, but no, you get it then, too.

I like the Photoshop model where if you save or export anything, it assumes the job is done correctly and just exits.


The Audacity Wiki Featre Requests page has the following entries

Disable “Save Changes?” on exit: (32 votes)
Simple option, even if the file has been edited. Use case is importing files to play them, view them or analyze them.

Disable “Save Changes?” on exit, subject to conditions: (17 votes)
If user’s last action was to export the complete audio (not a selection) (11 votes)
If user had not edited the project/had only imported files (4 votes)
If user had only done “safe” editing that would not materially harm the audio (2 votes)
If the only content was imported files located in the system temp location (1 votes)

Users are well known to delete files on import as part of their workflow. To be safe, this option must either not be exposed in Preferences (only be available by editing audacity.cfg) or be hidden behind an “Advanced” dialogue, or only be available if all the audio has just been exported.

Would you like me to add your vote(s) for any of the above ?

BTW the green italic words are a developer comment in response to these requests.


I don’t think any of them covers the desired case. If you save or export anything, the warning goes away.

I understand the desire to save the inexperienced user from themselves, so I do agree with making the message difficult to change, but it should be possible.

I would be changing that !@#$% so fast.


I predict (holding fingers to forehead) that changing a config file will become insanely popular (and a recurring theme on the forum) and the next Adding Features will be make it a button.


And I predict that you’ll see none of the current (few) developers rushing to implement this Feature Request due to the safety issues around inadvertent project loss

And personally I support that POV - and as a QA tester I probably encounter that warning that must be diusmissed far more than many/most users. :nerd:


due to the safety issues around inadvertent project loss

By whom?

We should balance the one loss by the vicar’s wife in Smithfield-Stilton on Rye against constant awkward irritation for all other users.

Have you ever had computer shutdown fail because all the other applications on the machine stopped…except Audacity?

I think hidden access to message deletion is a terrific idea.


We could theoretically have a section in Preferences, clearly labelled as “Dangerous settings”, but that would beg the question:
“If these settings are dangerous, why the heck are they offered?”

I think the matter comes down to, how much responsibility should the development team take for users shooting themselves in the foot
(users who are often inexperienced computer users).

I’m not the OP, but yes please. I vote for the main “Disable “Save Changes?” on exit”.

If I get a vote for the conditional one as well, I would add a vote for “If user had not edited the project/had only imported files,” otherwise my vote is for an unconditional: let me disable this prompt, if I wanted to save it I would have done so already.

My use of Audacity has primarily been for audio inspection and analysis. I almost never edit or modify (and never save or export). I can easily open dozens of files generated by an automated system to figure out why this or that is failing. Probably ~75% of the time they are wav files opened directly by file association. The rest of the time they are raw audio, opened via the Import → Raw Data… command. The prompt is only an annoyance for my work (I can’t even drum the N key to close a series of them). Worse is when it occasionally opens on the wrong monitor (i.e. not where the Audacity project windows are), requiring a bit of hunting to find the prompt, but that’s really a separate issue.

Increasingly, I’ll go for Force Quitting if I have enough files open rather than deal with all the prompts. With more than ~4 files, this is a time saver.

Folding back to the top. If you save or export anything in Photoshop, special internal format or not, it assumes that was the goal and just closes.

If you make no changes, it just closes.

If you make any change it warns you.

Screen Shot 2019-11-04 at 17.57.36.png
That seems perfectly rational. Always assuming the user is an idiot, while sometimes justified, can get really tired, particularly if you’re intentionally doing many multiple file opens and closes.

Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?
Save project before closing?

Go !@#$%^&* Away!