Clear Recent Items list in Windows 7

We have earlier published an article on how to display recent items list in Windows 7. The recent items list is shown in the Start Menu and contains all the items (documents, files and programs etc.) you have recently accessed. You can clear this list in many ways. Here is how :

Important : Since you are going to make changes to your Windows registry, it is highly advised that you create a backup of registry files using the free tool ERUNT. So that, if you somehow end up in messing up your registry, you can always restore it from the backup.

Method 1

Click on the Start Menu orb in Windows 7 to open it. Then right-click on the Recent Items in the Start Menu tab and choose Clear recent items list from the right-click menu.

Clear recent items in Windows 7

Method 2

Open an elevated command prompt and type the following commands in the elevated command prompt :

reg delete HKCUSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionExplorerRecentDocs /f
reg add HKCUSoftwareMicrosoftWindowsCurrentVersionExplorerRecentDocs /f
taskkill /f /im explorer.exe
start %windir%explorer.exe

The Windows Explorer is killed and started again in this method. This is done to load the registry again to reflect the changes we have made. You also restart your computer or log off and log back on for the same results.

Method 3

You can download Extract the contents to a folder and then run winall_clear_recent_doc.exe. This is a small program coded by myself ( and runs silently – quickly clearing the recent Items list. This program works on Windows XP, Vista and 7. This program is useful for using in automated scripts to clear the list.