How-to Disable Recent Files on Windows 10

[symple_box color=”blue” fade_in=”false” float=”center” text_align=”left” width=””]An updated guide can be found by clicking here. This guide is still accurate but has not been updated for the latest Windows 10 version.[/symple_box]

Windows 10 saves by default 20 recent files in your home folder when using your system. However if you’re keen to your privacy you might not like it that Windows does this. We’ll explain you how you can disable it.


1. Right-click the Start icon in your task bar and then Click on Control Panel

Control panel
Control panel

2. Then Click on Appearance and Personalization


Windows 10: Control Panel
Windows 10: Control Panel

3. Then Click on Taskbar and Navigation

4. Click on the Tab Start Menu

5. Uncheck the Boxes under Privacy.

Navigation and Taskbar Options
Navigation and Taskbar Options


That’s all. You should no longer see a history under applications and within File Explorer.

About the Author

2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018 Microsoft Most Valuable Professional Windows
Yuri specializes in troubleshooting (crash analysis and devices), system resource utilisation and system performance. He is also very interested in Customer Security. Yuri can be found as Windows Community Moderator and Wiki Author on Microsoft Answers and is active on different communities all across the web.


  1. This worked for me on Win10:

    Open Windows Settings (not control panel).

    Search “jump list” and open “Show recently opened items in Jump Lists on Start or the taskbar”

    Disable bottom option called “Show recently opened items in Jump Lists on Star Menu or the taskbar”

    …and probably turn off the other options on this screen if you don’t want windows tracking things.

  2. The ‘Start Menu’ tab is not visible where it is pictured in this article, so the options can not be changed. Note 100% failure rate from users under the article, now +1.

    1. Hello

      Thanks for letting us know, we didn’t even realize we still had an old image of Windows 10 in this guide. We’ve updated the image and the guide accordingly.

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