There isn't the option of saving project as compressed data anymore

I’m an old Audacity user, I use it a lot since 2009. There were many bugs, many freezes, but Audacity nowadays had been rock solid to me, and it had been very resourceful.

But the last version (3.0.0) removed one of the most useful options to save and archive finished projects: Save project as a compressed data. I’ve got exactly 377 podcast episodes saved into my HD, spending almost 68 Gb. If I save an episode using the .aup3 format, it would spend much more space - the last episode uses 1,2 Gb in aup3 format, and each episode spends only 185 Mb of disk space.

So, I’ll need to export all tracks in OGG (or FLAC) format, in order to be archived in a zip file. It’s a drawback. I hope the Audacity team reconsiders this decision in the future, and in the next release, maybe Audacity can save projects as compressed data again.

Ricardo - Linux user since 1998, Audacity user since 2009.

Do you ever go back and edit them? If not then you could save even more space by saving only the exported mix.

I have over 2,000 Audacity projects saved. I’ve been podcasting since 2005 and started using Audacity in 2006.

And yes, I go back and get elements or re-edit these old shows from time to time.

More, I collaborate on Audacity projects with others. The compressed files were a few hundred meg, easily transferred. Now our projects are in the 3-4 GB range…

Sure, I can export each individual track as OGG but then I lose envelope markings, I lose label tracks…

I REALLY hope this feature can be brought back in 3.02

This page in the Manual:

has a Tip div that states

You can losslessly compress an AUP3 project with standard utilities such as ZIP, WinZip or 7-Zip.

This also carefully mentioned on The “What’s New…” page for 3.0.0


I read that line in the manual and I don’t understand why that’s in the manual because we’re talking apples and oranges. The Audacity devs are really, really smart so they must know better than to suggest that as a reasonable alternative.

Audacity puts its data in AU files (I’m presuming v3 still does). Those are lossless files.

The old “Export Compressed Copy” would convert the au files to lossy OGG files. Yes, a bit of quality was technically lost but it was imperceptible to my ears.

This down-converting to the lossy format would turn a 3GB file into a 300MB file.

Now you talk about using a ZIP utility…ZIP takes files and looks for repeated parts to shrink them. ZIP has different results based on file type. Take a nice TXT file–ZIPping it will make it maybe 5% of the original size. But ZIP doesn’t work worth a dang when dealing with multimedia file types. AU. MOV. WAV. JPG. Zipping these files gains only a few percent of disk space…and takes forever to do.

So – real-world time.

I have a 75 minute file. The AUP3 is 2.3GB.

Using Audacity 2.4.1 to export as a compressed file. It took about 10 minutes on my Surface Book 3. The output was 98.4MB. That is a 95.5% reduction in file size.

Taking the AUP3 file and ZIPping it also took about 10 minutes on my Surface Book 3. The output file was 2.15GB. That is an 8% file size reduction.

Yes, the ZIP is lossless…but it’s also impossibly huge to share.

See why the ZIP suggestion is useless and the “Save compressed copy” needs to be reinstated?

Not exactly. Audacity 3.x writes “blobs” into the database rather than “au” files into a folder.

Implementing the old style (OGG) compressed project is complicated for the new AUP3 format. For one thing, the maximum size of a blob is 1 GB (default, with an absolute limit of 2 GB). While that is plenty big enough for most projects, it shouldn’t blow up if someone is working with a huge project. Implementation must cover edge cases as well as common use.

I expect that it is possible to implement (lossy) compressed AUP3 projects, and to implement it better than the old format, but it not straightforward and will probably require a significant amount of developer time (plus testing and documentation). That’s basically why it hasn’t been implemented in 3.0.0.

Audacity 3.0.1 will be released soon, and because it is such a short release cycle there will be few if any new features in it (just fixes and enhancements based on user feedback from 3.0.0).

The single file format is much better suited to sharing and sending to others than the old “pile of files” format, so I’m hoping it won’t be too long before we get lossy compressed AUP3 projects, but don’t hold your breath - it will require a lot of work.

Hahaha … :laughing:

IIRC it was a developer that wrote that line in the Manual (it may even have been Steve) not me as the principal editor - it’s not something that I would have written - a bit above my nerd-grade :wink:

But basically I endorse what Steve said in his reply.

But I do agree it would be a nice to have :sunglasses:

I may write an enhancement request for it in out bug-tracker (or it ma need a mini-proposal) in te Audacity Wiki) - do you think that’s a good idea Steve - and if so which approach?


No, it’s talking about oranges. There’s no mention of apples. :wink:

I realize I’m a little late to the discussion, but I only downloaded 3.4.2 recently when I got a new computer and just recently found out that the compressed copy is no longer an option.

While the .aup format is ideal, it’s not what we users need all the time. What worked with the compressed copy was the smaller size, which really helps us out on Sunday morning saving and uploading the recording to OneDrive, so that I can get it on my computer at home to edit the Sunday morning service and converting to .mp3 to post on the website.

Compressed copy worked by exporting it to .ogg format and coupling it with an .aup file that had all the markings, tracks, and other data.

If 3.4.2 can export to .ogg, I don’t see why it is so difficult to provide a compressed copy as is being suggested in this thread. The hard part is already done … the export to the smaller .ogg file format. The only thing that is missing is coupling that with the markings, tracks, etc.

Maybe someone smarter than me can explain exactly why this is so much more difficult to provide the extra information in a separate file that can be married together when audacity is importing the .ogg file.