Saving a File

I read in the FAQ that Audacity breaks down the project and that I must open the project by clicking on the project_aud or something similiar. I cannot find that particular title. We just spent about 3 hours recording an educational CD only to find that when saved, it was broken down into 5 folders. A little frustrating when you do not know what you are doing. Can anyone assist??

When you save an Audacity project as <project_name> it creates a number of things

  1. a top level master project file called <project_name>.aup
  2. a folder at the same filing level called <project_name>_data
  3. and within the folder a sub-folder structure with lots of little .au files - segments of the recording (mainly audio clips - but a couple of then are graphics files)

When you re-open a project with Audacity you should always open the <project_name>.aup top level file. This tells Audacity how to thread together all the little .au files. It is deliberately designed this way so that Audacity doesn’t have to open and work with a single humungously large file, which would hamper performance. You should not be attempting to open or manipulate any individual .au files.

When you have finished editing your Audacity project you can Export it from Audacity as a WAV file or MP3 file depending what sound quality you wish to achieve. WAV files are around ten times larger than the equivalent MP3 files but are uncompressed and thus the audio quality is higher.



something.aup. It’s the Audacity Project file. That’s the sheet music for the orchestra. Did you put any punctuation marks or slash marks in the file name? That will kill a save operation. Something/Great.wav isn’t a sound file. It’s an options structure designator (in Windows) In Mac it’s a directory name. Punctuation marks other than underline and dash should be avoided. I don’t like using spaces, either because our shop uses all three types of computers, Mac, Windows, Linux, and some of them don’t like spaces.

Anyway, can you search for just the straight filename without any of the other bits?

Next time you get to the end of a large project, Export As WAV… immediately to get a safety copy. Each of your original capture performances should be WAV files as well. Audacity Projects are fast and efficient, but complicated and brittle.

There’s no way to put those thousands of AU file back together into your finished show. The AUP file is a really big deal. Even though it’s not a sound file, without that, there is no show.

Now that it’s too late, I can tell you that you should have lost only one of the three hours. Anybody who tries to edit a three-hour show all in one go is standing outside on the public sidewalk loudly begging for trouble.

Part_1.wav [1-hour]
Part_2.wav [1-hour]
Part_3.wav [1-hour]

<<<We just spent about 3 hours recording an educational CD >>>

Which would not have fit. The maximum length show for a standard, easily playable Music CD is 80 minutes. See: part1, part2, part3. Had you opted for a data CD with MP3 compressed sound files on it, then yes, all three hours would have fit on one disk, but since those aren’t standard Music CDs, half the CD players in my house and the one in the car would not be able to play it.

Any luck finding that AUP file?

Did you run out of hard drive space? A show that large would have taken up a bunch of space. Running your main hard drive up to 99% capacity is something you only do once.