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  • To return later to your unfinished work in Audacity with all tracks and edits as you left them, Save an Audacity project.
  • To play your current work in other media applications or Sending your work to others, you need to Export an audio file such as WAV or MP3.
If you have a problem saving a file, have a look at the FAQ on saving projects which answers some frequently asked questions.


There are three main commands for saving projects:

  • File > Save Project > Save Project saves an .aup3 project file.
  • File > Save Project > Save Project As... lets you save an existing Project with a new name, opens the new project and closes the old project.
  • File > Save Project > Backup Project... lets you save a backup copy of your existing Project, leaving your existing project open for continued editing.

This saves or updates the .aup3 project file. Saving a project lets you save unfinished work and re-open it later in Audacity exactly as it was and (with the exception of the undo history), with all edits and recorded/imported tracks preserved. As with saving any type of file, certain characters cannot be used in the name of the .aup3 file if they are reserved for the operating system. See our information on forbidden characters.

When saving an Audacity project it is normally easiest to use the File > Save Project command, which has a default shortcut of Ctrl + S (or ⌘ + S on Mac). If you save a project again having made further changes to it, "Save Project" then updates the .aup3 project file without bothering you with prompts.

"Backup Project" is the safe and recommended way to make a copy of a project with a new name or in a different location to serve either as a single backup copy of the project, or as one of several incremental copies of the project in the state it had at a particular date and time.

Advice A saved project can only be opened and used by Audacity. If you want an audio file that will play on your music player or to burn a CD then you will need to Export one.


To re-open a saved project:

Read more about Audacity Projects.

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