Dragon Naturally Speaking Preferred XP edition not working: what can I do?
Thread poster: Jason Willis-Lee

Jason Willis-Lee  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:44
Spanish to English
+ ...
Sep 2, 2008


I am a seasoned used of DNS Preferred but for some reason cannot get the thing working today. After removing the mike USB and plugging back in, restarting, etc. I still can't get it up and running.
I suspect this may be due to overload of speech files or some sort of limit has been reached (?) Before I do something drastic like uninstall and reinstall the program (I´m not keen on this because I will lose all my speech files on several years work) I wonder if an experienced DNS user has any suggestions on how to resolve this or has had the same problem? All I get is a small yellow box with question marks when I try and dictate.



Peter Linton  Identity Verified
Local time: 23:44
Member (2002)
Swedish to English
+ ...
Suggestions Sep 2, 2008

Just to get the mildly insulting checks out of the way first: this has happened to me once or twice, but always for a simple mechanical reason (plugs in wrong sockets / copper wire frayed / microphone broken). Do you have a spare mic?

A reboot may help. Failing that, a reinstall sounds a good idea, after you have backed up your User files, probably in C:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Application Data\Nuance\Naturally speaking xx\Users, and perhaps under your own Windows admin username. AFAIK, that should save all your user files including training/corrections you have done.


Claire Cox
United Kingdom
Local time: 23:44
French to English
+ ...
Restore users Sep 2, 2008

I had a problem with the Standard version of Dragon 9 recently, where it maintained my terminology files were full and stopped working. I 'phoned a very helpful chap at Nuance who suggested that I restore users by going into Manage users, Advanced then Restore User. That did the trick for me, so it might be worth a try. It happened once before and my son managed to load my uncorrupted user file from my laptop, but I'm afraid I can't remember how he did it.

Good luck!

Incidentally, the helpline number for Nuance (in the UK at least) is 01483 794 444. Someone posted this in an earlier thread and I hadn't managed to find it elsewhere.


Jason Willis-Lee  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:44
Spanish to English
+ ...
Looks like a mic problem Sep 3, 2008

Hi Peter and Claire,

Thank you for your helpful comments. My version (preferred, XP edition) seems too simple for the advanced manage users options (not present) so I probably need to upgrade soon. I tend to get left in the dust with technology very quickly.

From a quick audio check, it looks as if the volume is ok but Dragon is not receiving the audio input correctly so I have bought myself a new mic. Hopefully this will remedy the situation.

Thanks again.


megane_wang  Identity Verified
Local time: 00:44
English to Spanish
+ ...
Are you using a laptop with several connectors, or 1 or 2 screens? Sep 3, 2008


After working quite ok for a few days with a new laptop, I found two different problems with Dragon.

1st. Multiple micro plugs made a mess Once I forgot to connect the micro (a normal plug located in a front panel) before starting and the poor thing made up an enormous mess because it detected my micro + an integrated micro plugged somewhere (it was not there, but Windows said so...) + 2 micros integrated over the screen (these are real ones).

For some reason, Dragon was able to "calibrate" the micro, but then it did not get anything during dictate.

I had to un/reinstall the audio controller, disable all audio inputs and then I always connected the micro before starting up. That solved it (even after enabling the audio inputs).

2nd. Multiple screens made it crazy (and made me crazy for days): It worked quite ok, but, suddenly it was unable to detect any words (i.e. I said "equality", and it detected nothing, or just "e"). I checked everything, purchased an USB micro because I read a support page that stated that this one could solve some problems......... nothing: it worked for a couple of hours and then no more.

... until I noticed that: when the laptop worked with its own screen, everything was OK.

... but, as soon as I connected my second monitor with an extended desktop.... Ayee! It stopped working. Just to make it funnier, the symptoms were exactly the same in any case.

... to date, I have not found a solution for this. In fact, I finally bought a new tiny desktop computer to avoid loosing time with that that st***d machine (BTW, not a cheap one at all).

Maybe it helps...

Ruth @ MW

[Edited at 2008-09-03 15:06]

[Edited at 2008-09-03 15:08]

Dragon Naturally bombs during data collection?? Sep 25, 2009

I also have had difficulty with dragon naturally speaking version SP1 running in XP with word 2003
It simply does not hear a microphone at all despite the microphone working fine in e.g. Skype.
I have uninstalled and reinstalled Dragon with no effect and tried umpteen combinations of microphone settings.

That was the story at home. It seems now to have happened at work (XP, word 2007) when the dictation function was disabled and the data collection phase started. I think the data collection phase hung. After stopping the package and restarting it did not see the microphone despite a reboot.

In both cases I am using one screen.

Any clues would be very much appreciated.




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Dragon Naturally Speaking Preferred XP edition not working: what can I do?

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