How To Find And Clear Recent Activity On Mac

If you are short on time and looking for an effective method to clear recent files on Mac, here’s a tip for you: Download Disk Clean Pro and quickly clear recent files from the search history in Finder on Mac. Using this tool, you can even clear cache, delete duplicates, old downloads, find large files, and get rid of those not required. In a nutshell, it is a complete Mac cleanup tool that does all the cleaning and optimization work automatically.

However, if you want to do all by yourself, we’ve covered that too. Below you can read the best solutions to view and delete recent activity manually from Mac.

How to Clear Recent in Finder on Mac

To make things easy, Mac logs and displays recent activity in different ways. This comes in handy when you have forgotten where exactly you saved a file. However, when you share your Mac with others, this can lead to private information exposure as the person who has access can see what you searched for. Therefore, to keep your data intact and avoid snooping people from gathering information, it’s best to clear recent activity. Hence, in this article, we will discuss how to do that.

tipsAdditional Tip

The easiest way to delete recent files, whether shown in finder or website search history, is the Internet Privacy module of Disk Clean Pro a One-Click Optimization. These features are designed to protect your privacy and delete unwanted traces that might slow down the system and reveal any personal information. To use it, you need to download, install, and launch Disk Clean Pro. Next, click the Internet Privacy module > run the scan and fix errors. In addition to this, click the Start System Scan button and look for all the errors that might be slowing down Mac. This helps clean the Mac in no time.


What is the Recent folder on Mac?

The recent folder, the one appears in the Finder window’s sidebar, is where you can see a list of all the searched items. This folder is also known as Smart Folder, and it only consists of the shortcuts to the files based on the smart search parameter.

Since these are just the references, you cannot delete the Recent folder. However, if you want, you can delete recent activity from the Finder sidebar. To open it, press Shift + F + Command.

How To Disable Recents In Finder?

To turn off Recents in Finder, follow the steps below:

  1. Open Finder
  2. Click the Finder menu > Preferences.
  3. Hit Sidebar tab > uncheck the box next to RecentsRecents
  4. Exit Preferences window.

Now, you will not see the Recents tab in the Finder.

How To Delete Recent Items On Mac

Note: Recent Items and a Recent folder are entirely different.

Recent items can be accessed from the Apple menu, and it saves the information related to recently accessed applications, files, and servers. Erasing recent items isn’t difficult at all. To clear it, follow the steps below:

  1. Click the Apple menu > Recent Items.
  2. Scroll to the bottom and click Clear Menuclear menu

This will help get rid of all the items from the menu. However, this doesn’t mean the list is cleared forever. Each time you use an application, server, or perform any activity, it will be displayed here. So, to avoid disclosing information that you don’t want to share, you’ll need to clear this data often.

How to Disable Recent via Terminal

However, if you want to go a step further to show or hide recent items, you can use Terminal. So, if you are ready to do that, follow the steps below and disable recent items using the Terminal command.

  1. Head to Applications > Utilities > Terminal
  2. Type or copy-paste : defaults write AppleShowAllFiles TRUE killall Finder

This command will show all hidden files

  1. To hide everything in terminal type: defaults write AppleShowAllFiles FALSE killall Finder

An alternate way to delete recent file history is to use Shift + CMD keys. This will show or hide files instantly. Using either of the methods explained, you could delete or clear things that run in the background or consume memory unnecessarily.

Now, let’s learn how to delete browser data, cookies, search history from a popular Mac browser.

How To Clear Activity From Safari?

Each browser you use on Mac stores searches and activity history separately. This means you will have to open each browser and clean it manually. However, if you are looking for an easy way to delete cached files, search history uses the Internet Privacy module offered by Disk Clean Pro.

To use it, install Disk Clean Pro > Internet Privacy > run the scan > and clean all the detected traces.

Note: When performing this action, make sure all the browsers are closed.

Manually clear Safari history

  1. Open Safari > click the History tab.

Note History stores all information related to data, cookies, and cache.

  1. Choose Remove All Website Data > select the time range. However, if you want to delete it completely, click All History.
  2. Clean History and there it is, all traces are erased.

Erasing History from Chrome

  1. Open Chrome > History meu > Show Full History > Clear browsing data.


  1. Select Browsing History > Clear Data.

That’s it.


  1. Open Firefox > History menu > Clear Recent History

This will clean all pages from history. However, if you want to remove individual pages, select Show All History and choose the ones you wish to delete.

Note: By clicking Forget About this Site, you can erase all the information related to pages associated with the site.

Additional Information

To remove recent files from files likes Text Edit and Pages, click the File menu > Open recent > Clear Menu.

This way, you can find and clear recent files in Finder on Mac. However, if you are looking for an easy way, try using Disk Clean Pro. This Mac optimization and the cleanup tool will help clear the recent folder’s history and help recover storage space. It is a one-click optimization tool that offers in-depth cleaning and optimization for your Mac. Once you use it, you will feel the difference.

Whichever method you use, it doesn’t matter our aim to help resolve your problem. But if you let us know which method you picked and why it will be great. We love hearing from you; please leave us a comment in the section below.


  • comment_avtar
    Thank you for this blog. I was really troubled with this “Recent Items” thing. I could remove recent items from mac with these simple steps.

    4 years ago
  • comment_avtar
    This was a very helpful and well-written article. Really helped me with the solution I was looking for.

    4 years ago
  • comment_avtar
    Paridhi Dhamani
    I was really stuck with recent items, now I will try this manual way to clear my recent

    4 years ago
  • comment_avtar
    Dheeraj Manghnani
    Thank you for this blog. I was really troubled with this “Recent Items” thing. I could remove recent items from mac with these simple steps.

    4 years ago
  • comment_avtar
    Recent Items have been a problem for me for a long, thanks for sharing the steps on how to remove recent items from Mac.

    4 years ago
  • comment_avtar
    Pixie Dust
    This helped me improve the speed of my mac! Thank you for sharing!

    4 years ago
  • comment_avtar
    clearing recent activities on Mac? This is good. Not that I own one but I know someone who needs it.

    3 years ago

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