I feel like windows users are not a priority

I bought Ardour for windows. Its crashes all the time. I mean, all the time.
I can’t use it. I wanted to report the bug but there is no windows 11 option in the bug tracker.
it’s very weird to me. because windows are the biggest operating system. and I guess a lot of the purchases of the software come from windows, because in Linux, you can download Ardour for free by the package manager. so why it’s not a priority?
I feel like the homepage of the website summarizes it well. “record, edit, and mix on Linux, macOS and…”(last and least) “…Windows”.
It makes me sad. because it looks like very good software, and I love open source, and I want to be part of this community. (and there is no other good option in the open-source space).
is there any way to help make the windows version more stable, and give it some more love?

Ardour does not crash on WIndows “all the time”. Now, it may very well crash on your Windows system all the time, that’s certainly something that happens to some people. We call this a “system specific problem”, because it affects a specific system(s), rather than all Windows users.

The problem is thatg we don’t have the resources to assist Windows users with system specific problems. Ardour does not generate enough revenue to have any “actual support” staff, and in general, Windows user have not been active in the Ardour community helping each other other out (there are a few notable exceptions). That part is surprising because according the data we have, there are roughly as many Windows users as Linux users. For whatever reason, they’re just not here to help each other out, and we (the developers) aren’t in a position to do that.

Windows is last on the home page because it was the last platform we ported to. Why was it the last platform? Because Linux and macOS are both fundamentally Unix-based operating systems, and Windows is not, so it required more resources (notably from Waves, but also former Ardour developers like Tim Mayberry) to get a functioning version for Windows.

Windows 11 has now been added to the bug tracker. That isn’t a priority for us because there are essentially no known bugs on WIndows that have turned out to be Windows version specific. Anyway it is there now.

Really, the big picture is this: Ardour has as many users on Windows as Linux, but Ardour developers do not use Windows, either for development or to run Ardour. Nothing is going to alter that, so if there is to be a vibrant level of Windows support/community here, it needs to come from the people who do use Windows. That hasn’t happened yet. If I/we are standing in the way of that, let us know, but I’m not aware of any sense in which we do.


Windows 10 user here. I have found Ardour to be pretty stable in my experience. Maybe a crash or two in the last 2 years. I also wish there was more chatter on here that was specific to the windows version but there isn’t. Why that is who knows. Maybe just a different mentality coming from the Linux community vs. the Windows community. Appreciate all that the devs have done but also realize they can’t give much, if any help, to Windows users as Paul said above. That does make me wonder who would I talk to if I did have a Windows specific question? Right now I don’t know the answer to that question.

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We do try to be responsive to Windows issues that are not system-specific. As a trivial example, a few weeks ago, I learned that it was possible that we were not setting up thread scheduling correctly for realtime audio processing on modern Windows. I checked our code, found what appeared to be an issue, checked in with the person who had written that code, confirmed that things were being done correctly. In this particular case, no action was necessary, but if it had been, the work would have been done.

I would still recommend posting here and seeing what response you DO get. I rarely use Ardour on Windows myself for instance, but I tend to have 1/4 to 1/3 of my class I teach annually on Mixbus using Windows, so I still have to deal with it on occasion. There may be others around with better knowledge so you may get lucky and someone has run across your issue in the past in that case, never know unless you ask though.

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Thanks @seablade. I don’t post much but I have posted a question or two in the past. I do check the forum frequently for new information and discussion. Looking back I never had all that many questions on how to use Ardour I guess.

About those numbers Paul mentioned: I may even count as a ‘Windows user’ because I downloaded that version as well - but I’m not really using Ardour on Windows - why should I, since it runs so nicely on Linux?
I’m not sure if I even reinstalled it on Windows since I last installed a new SSD for the operating systems. My version of Windows just occupies some space there, but is hardly ever used…

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Regarding the OP’s system-specific issue, I bet a plugin is causing it. I have been using Ardour on Windows for years and when it does crash, it has been due to a particular plugin. Once I delete the troublesome plugin, the problem goes away. I ended up buying the full XT line of LV2 plugins from Harrison rather than messing with random free ones online and haven’t had issues since.

If you really “love open source and want to be part of this community”, then consider not using Windows or other proprietary operating systems.


I think most people these days tend to stick with whichever OS gives them the fewest problems - and naturally that’ll be different for different users. I have two Apple Macs here but I’ve never warmed to MacOS. I prefer Mac hardware because it’s inherently quiet - but I always dual-boot into Windows. On the rare occasions when I need to boot into MacOS I find it horribly slow and clunky. And back in the day, I tried well over a dozen versions of Linux but I felt as if Linux was forever trying to prevent me from achieving what I wanted to achieve. These days I use Zorin Linux from a bootable USB stick - and Linux usability has definitely improved. It’s become a lot more user-friendly over the years.

But as others have said… don’t dismiss the possibility that unexplained crashes might well be due to your choice of plugins!

I feel like windows users are not a priority

Make a nice change :slight_smile:

I have seen a post about someone saying to not making the Windows version a priority before on this website. I use Windows, Mac and Linux for Ardour for different reasons. One of the reasons Ardour attracted me as my main DAW was it being cross-platform which is important to have access on any computer.

I found that similar problems I had on a PC did occur on a Mac version of Ardour, such as when the playback is trying to process when I try to simultaneously edit a track on the timeline quickly such as a cut and drag with my mouse, before the processing is finished (if this makes any sense lol). That has caused a system crash before. I also used a low-grade laptop with Ardour on Windows/Linux too, even though I upgrade computers. My limitations involved the lack of CPU / processing on my laptop itself and nothing to do with Ardour directly. But it did work really well for small audio editing like podcast editing.

To add to what Paul said, Windows 11 is low on the priority and it is for some company’s software developers. I contacted one of the developers for another software I use and they haven’t even made a compatible version yet. I predict in the next few years or so when Windows decides to stop supporting W10 that there will be a network effect for upgrading to W11. At least Ardour has added a track bug for W11.

Where do you teach when you use Mixbus? That sounds awesome. At my college, they taught us to use Pro Tools and Logic Pro. Also Adobe software too. I learned to use Ardour once stopped using PT.

When doing so, please include the latest file(s) from %localappdata%\Ardour6\CrashLog\ (if there are any).

I teach in the US at Virginia Commonwealth University. My first year mixing class (Can be taken up to three times for credit though students rarely take it more than once) is taught using Mixbus where I focus on basic editing, ear training, and topics such as gain structure and signal flow, the basics to build off of there and some of the strength of teaching in Mixbus IMO.

If students continue taking the course I tend to customize the second and third years a bit more towards their interest, which for my students mostly means live theatrical mixing that I teach using a CL5 console and make them program/mix shows based off of a library of multitracks, but I have offered to customize and go more in depth in studio mixing as well, just noone has taken me up on it yet.


Nice! Are your classes online too as far as teaching the Mixbus and projects? I’m far from where you are but your courses sound cool.

While I am definitely not against teaching online, it adds a level of complexity. I did it during COVID for a while for students registered for the class, but I also have noticed that the knowledge objectives suffered in doing so. I currently am teaching hybrid and intend to do so next fall for the mixing class if things continue to work, and while I am against offering them online for a larger audience as well, I would have to:

  1. Check with the rules/etc as terms of my employment with the university
  2. Have a LOT of time that I don’t currently have

Sadly the #2 there is likely the larger issue, I am currently running a technology consulting business (Focused on live events/spaces and AV) with multiple employees (Thankfully everyone is VERY part time), working full-time as a production manager for one of the larger road house theaters on the east coast of the US, and teaching classes, and frankly I am already seeing my work suffering a bit. Until I can find a good balance on that I don’t think I could offer anything else at this time. Sorry.


It’s all good. Thank you for the response. Wishing your work gets better for you soon.

Get a good description of what is happening exactly.
You can also start working on your crashes yourself, without being a programmer!
Here is how:

  1. Isolate
    This means looking for things the crashes have in common. Think about questions like “was another program open in the background?“, “was I downloading a torrent while this happened?”,”did I have a certain hardware connected while this happened?” Try to remove as many outside factors and plugins etc as possible, does it still crash? Then reintroduce them one by one until you find the cause. Get creative, there a lots of questions to ask.

  2. Optimize
    Windows was and is not made for real-time processing such as audio applications. Neither are most over the counter computers. Search the web for how to optimize your system. Check your computer parts for incompatible components. Learn how to use profilers. Did you know that there are companies that are specialized in selecting parts for audio computers?

  3. Once you optimized and isolated, you will either have no more problems or you will know how exactly to reproduce the crashes. That is the time to fill a bug report. With a proper description how to reproduce the crash, what system you have and an attached crashdump.

Hope this helps.
Open source is built by the community. GOOD, reproducible bugreports are a way to contribute back to the project. With due diligence.

Edit: I forgot one very important thing: when you need help with the isolation etc. ask the community for help but ask specific questions if you want good answers. Things like “I want to see if a plug-in causes the crashes on my system, how would I approach this?” Etc. are totally legit. In any way better then aimless complaining about priorities :wink:

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