Change Your Windows Explorer Quick Access and Recent Files Settings

Do you hate it when it thinks Windows knows what’s best for you? You may have noticed the segment at the upper left of the window called Quick Access with the blue star icon next to it when you go into Windows / File Explorer. So you can see some folders listed there that you have recently used.

Then you can see a bunch of files in the right pane of the window that you have recently opened. It can be useful to have these files but it can also make things look cluttered and also reveal files that you have opened that you don’t want anyone to see. The same goes under Easy Access for the files.

It seems that those who build and update the technologies that we use tend to want to strip away more and more of our privacy for the sake of “convenience,” but it might not be the best choice for you to share all the culture we live in. Thankfully you can do something about it, at least when it comes to your files and directories that have been used lately.

Whether you’ve been a Windows power user for a while, you’ve most likely experimented with Windows’ Folder Options. These options allow you to do things like show file extensions, and show hidden files. You can also adjust items like single-clicking, instead of double-clicking a program to open.

If you want to prevent Windows from viewing the recent use of files and directories on your computer then all you need to do is open Windows Explorer, go to the View menu, click Settings, then select Switch folder and search options.

You can then uncheck the boxes for Showing recently used files in Quick Access on the General tab under the Privacy heading, and Display regularly used folders in Quick Access. This will delete the recently accessed Windows Explorer documents and also clear out any previous files under Easy Access.

Like other people, if you like the Fast Access option, you can also manually add files to that list so that only those particular files that you select will be displayed and not those that you don’t want to be there. To attach a folder to the Quick Access area manually, simply right-click on the folder and select Add to Quick Access. Then you can see the folder listed right there with a thumbtack icon.


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