How to Show or Hide Recently opened items in Start, Jump Lists and File Explorer in Windows 11

This article describes steps to enable or disable “Show recently opened items in Start, Jump Lists, and File Explorer” in Windows 11.

By default, Windows keeps track of some of your recent activities, including files and folders access, and recently used apps and others that are added to the Start menu Recommended section, Jump Lists, and File Explorer.

This feature is there to help you get to the stuff you recently opened or used to improve your productivity. It also makes finding items you have been working on in file explorer easier.

Some might find this helpful, while others see it as a privacy issue. Recently opened items are stored in the %APPDATA%\Microsoft\Windows\Recent Items folder by default.

Below we will show you how to show or hide recently opened items in the Start menu, recommended section, Jump Lists, or File Explorer.

How to turn on or off recently opened items in the Start menu, recommended section, jump lists, or file explorer

As described above, Windows keeps track of some of your recent activities, including files and folders access, and recently used apps and others that are added to the Start menu Recommended section, Jump Lists, and File Explorer.

Below is how to enable or disable this feature.

Windows 11 has a centralized location for the majority of its settings. Everything can be done, from system configurations to creating new users and updating Windows from its System Settings pane.

To get to System Settings, you can use the Windows key + I shortcut or click on Start ==> Settings, as shown in the image below:

Alternatively, you can use the search box on the taskbar and search for Settings. Then select to open it.

Windows Settings pane should look similar to the image below. In the Windows Settings app, click Personalization on the left.

On the right, select the Start tile to expand.

On the System -> Personalization -> Start settings panel, toggle the button switch on “Show recently opened items in Start, Jump Lists, and File Explorer” to the On position to enable.

To disable it, toggle the switch button back to the Off position.

Alternatively, open Local Group Policy Editor by clicking on the Start Menu and searching for Edit group policy, as highlighted below.

Under Best match, select Edit group policy to launch Local Group Policy Editor.

In the left pane of Local Group Policy Editor, expand the tree: 

Computer Configuration\Administrative Templates\Start Menu and Taskbar

Then, locate and double-click the setting in the Start Menu and Taskbar details pane on the right. Do not keep a history of recently opened documents.

In the Do not keep a history of recently opened documents setting window, set the option to Not Configure, Enabled, or Disabled.

  • Not Configured (default)
  • Enabled 
  • Disabled

Select OK to apply your changes.

Close Local Group Policy Editor.

Doing this will not affect your web browsing history and other web activities. To disable tracking in the browser, you’ll have to do that within the browser settings page.

Conclusion:

This post showed you how to disable or turn off recently used items in Windows 11. If you find any error above or have something to add, please use the comment form below to report.