Windows 8 OS
|Windows® 8 is the latest version of the Microsoft Windows operating system, officially released on October 26, 2012. Although Windows 8 has a new interface including a "Start screen" optimised for touchscreen input, the audio architecture is near-identical to that in Windows 7 and Vista.
Audacity and Windows 8
Please use the current Audacity version for Windows 8, not legacy 1.2 or 1.3 versions. Current Audacity fully supports Windows 8, Windows 8 Pro or Windows 8 Enterprise on desktop or tablet machines running an x86 32-bit or 64-bit processor with a minimum screen resolution of 800x600.
Audacity supports the "Surface with Windows 8 Pro" tablet which ships with Windows 8 Pro. This tablet's release date is February 9, 2013.
Windows 8 minimum system requirements quoted by Microsoft are as follows, and are the same as for Windows 7:
- 1 gigahertz (GHz) or faster 32-bit or 64-bit x86 processor
- 1 gigabyte (GB) RAM (32-bit), or 2 GB RAM (64-bit)
- 16 GB available hard disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB (64-bit)
- DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver.
For best performance if you are working with an hour or more of audio or multiple shorter tracks, Audacity recommends 2 GHz processor and 4 GB of RAM on both 32-bit and 64-bit Windows 8.
Additional requirements to use certain features:
- To use touch, you need a tablet or a monitor that supports multitouch
- To access the Windows Store and to download and run applications, you need an active Internet connection and a screen resolution of at least 1024 x 768
- To snap applications to the side of a screen, you need a screen resolution of at least 1366 x 768.
For a convenient list of the most significant changes in Windows 8, see http://www.guidingtech.com/8255/top-10-new-changes-features-windows-8/.
Sound Device driver requirements
You should have appropriate sound device drivers intended for your particular computer model and for your version of Windows 8, as provided either by the manufacturers of the motherboard or by the device manufacturer. Sometimes, new computers may only come with generic Microsoft sound device drivers. See Updating Sound Device Drivers for help.
On older machines upgraded from Windows XP, Vista or 7, sound device drivers for your particular motherboard or sound device may not yet be available. In that case, the best general recommendation is to use drivers meant for Windows 7, given the Windows 8 audio architecture is similar to that of Windows 7. If in doubt, seek advice from your motherboard or sound device manufacturer.
Windows 8 no longer has a "Start" menu containing programs and system functions, and boots into the new tiled interface of the Windows Start screen. Audacity may be launched either from the Start screen or from the Desktop, which is accessed by the Desktop tile on the Start screen. To access Start screen, mouse over the bottom left of the monitor.
If you would prefer Windows 8 to have the traditional "Start" menu and to boot directly to the Desktop, you can install the open source Classic Shell utility. The first time you click Classic Shell's Start button, you can choose whether you want a "Classic" Start menu or one similar to Windows XP or to Windows Vista/7.
Default media programs
Popular audio (and video) file types like WAV, MP3 and MP4 will open by default in the new interface's full screen "Music" or "Video" player and not in Windows Media Player on the Desktop, even if you double-click the file from the Desktop. If you want Media Player to open all such files, press the Windows key, type "Default" (without quotes) then in the search results, choose "Default Programs". Choose "Set your default programs" then select Windows Media Player from the list on the left. You can now either set Windows Media Player to open by default all the file types and protocols it supports; or select particular types and protocols for which it will be default player.
If you have installed another media player such as VLC, you can similarly select that installed program and make it default application for all or some of its supported file types. As in previous versions of Windows, you can always right-click over a particular file type in Explorer, choose "Open with" then choose the default program for that file type.
On Windows Vista and 7, disk defragmentation is by default carried out as a background process once a week at 1 AM, if the computer is switched on and not busy.
Windows 8 extends this with a new Automatic Maintenance feature that runs daily at a scheduled time (changeable by the user), if the computer is switched on and not busy. The maintenance tasks run in the background and include security updating and scanning, Windows software updates and system diagnostics as well as disk defragmentation. If the computer is not switched on or is busy at the scheduled time, maintenance runs at the first time the computer is available and idle. If the computer becomes active while maintenance is running, the maintenance is paused within a couple of seconds.
It may nonetheless be advisable to avoid recording close to scheduled maintenance times, otherwise the necessary maintenance may fall behind. This article explains how to manually start and stop scheduled maintenance.
Known Issues using Audacity on Windows 8
Known issues and behaviors are believed to be identical to those on Windows 7 and are documented on the Windows 7 page.
If you encounter an issue with Audacity on Windows 8 not listed in the above link, please write to our feedback e-mail address.