In Windows start menu, we can see the list of recently opened documents(text, word, excel, power point, image files etc). In Window XP and Server 2003, this is named ‘Recent Documents‘ where as in Vista and Windows 7, it’s named ‘Recent Items‘. The list looks like the following in Windows 7.
This list of recent documents/recent items can be deleted from command line by executing the below command.
reg delete HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\RecentDocs /a
The changes will be effective immediately.
Disable recent documents list in start menu
We can make windows not to show the recent documents list in the start menu. This can be done by running the following command.
reg add HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced /v Start_ShowRecentDocs /t REG_DWORD /d 0 /f
In this case, the changes won’t be effective until you log off from the current session and log in back.
To enable recent items list we can run the following command.
reg add HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Advanced /v Start_ShowRecentDocs /t REG_DWORD /d 1 /f
I have tested the above commands on Windows 7 and have found them to be working. If you have tried this commands on XP/Vista, please share the results.