"My recent documents" folder has hundreds of files?

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

Hi,

Users "My recent documents" -folder have hundreds of files in them.
It works correctly from the Windows, it shows only 15 last one used. But
the directory in their profile contains links to all the files, not just
the last 15..

I don't think it should work this way.. what is wrong?

XP Pro UK.

-sk
10 answers Last reply
More about recent documents folder hundreds files
  1. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    On Tue, 22 Mar 2005 14:00:51 -0800, Sami Kapanen wrote:

    > Hi,
    >
    > Users "My recent documents" -folder have hundreds of files in them.
    > It works correctly from the Windows, it shows only 15 last one used. But
    > the directory in their profile contains links to all the files, not just
    > the last 15..
    >
    > I don't think it should work this way.. what is wrong?
    >
    > XP Pro UK.
    >
    > -sk

    Actually, it is the way it works. These items are just shortcuts. Although
    there are many, they are very small. Eventually, older ones will drop out
    to make room for new. In other words, this folder behaves the same as the
    start menu's recent list but the list is longer.

    --
    Sharon F
    MS-MVP ~ Windows Shell/User
    In memory of our dear friend, MVP Alex Nichol
  2. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    210. Right hand side
    Change the Number of Recent Documents to 25
    http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp_tweaks.htm


    HOW TO: Display, Use, and Clear "My Recent Documents" on the Start Menu in
    Windows XP
    http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;307875

    --
    Hope this helps. Let us know.

    Wes
    MS-MVP Windows Shell/User

    In news:42409593.6513@TAKETHISOFF.hamk.fi,
    Sami Kapanen <sami.kapanen@TAKETHISOFF.hamk.fi> hunted and pecked:
    > Hi,
    >
    > Users "My recent documents" -folder have hundreds of files in them.
    > It works correctly from the Windows, it shows only 15 last one used.
    > But the directory in their profile contains links to all the files,
    > not just the last 15..
    >
    > I don't think it should work this way.. what is wrong?
    >
    > XP Pro UK.
    >
    > -sk
  3. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    "Sharon F" <sharonfDEL@ETEmvps.org> wrote in message
    news:ulAL%23TuLFHA.1176@TK2MSFTNGP15.phx.gbl...
    > On Tue, 22 Mar 2005 14:00:51 -0800, Sami Kapanen wrote:
    >
    >> Hi,
    >>
    >> Users "My recent documents" -folder have hundreds of files in them.
    >> It works correctly from the Windows, it shows only 15 last one used. But
    >> the directory in their profile contains links to all the files, not just
    >> the last 15..
    >>
    >> I don't think it should work this way.. what is wrong?
    >>
    >> XP Pro UK.
    >>
    >> -sk
    >
    > Actually, it is the way it works. These items are just shortcuts. Although
    > there are many, they are very small. Eventually, older ones will drop out
    > to make room for new. In other words, this folder behaves the same as the
    > start menu's recent list but the list is longer.
    >
    > --
    > Sharon F
    > MS-MVP ~ Windows Shell/User
    > In memory of our dear friend, MVP Alex Nichol

    Agreed they are small, but they still take up quite a lot of diskspace,
    notably because they are small.
    eg. on mine there are some 160 'shortcuts' with a total size of 95,078 bytes
    taking up 655,360 bytes of diskspace.
    With average shortcut sizes of around 600 bytes and pretty normal allocation
    units on disk of 4096 bytes, that will do it to you.
    Each shortcut will cost you an allocation unit.
    I know disc capacity is at a premium these days (much MB for the buck), but
    it is always nice to have optimal use of the available capacity.
    Also, as an aside, huge amounts of itty-bitty-files only tend to contribute
    to fragmentation on your disc.

    just my take on it.
    :-))

    george
  4. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    On Wed, 23 Mar 2005 12:38:12 +0100, george wrote:

    > "Sharon F" <sharonfDEL@ETEmvps.org> wrote in message
    > news:ulAL%23TuLFHA.1176@TK2MSFTNGP15.phx.gbl...
    >> [24 quoted lines suppressed]
    >
    > Agreed they are small, but they still take up quite a lot of diskspace,
    > notably because they are small.
    > eg. on mine there are some 160 'shortcuts' with a total size of 95,078 bytes
    > taking up 655,360 bytes of diskspace.
    > With average shortcut sizes of around 600 bytes and pretty normal allocation
    > units on disk of 4096 bytes, that will do it to you.
    > Each shortcut will cost you an allocation unit.
    > I know disc capacity is at a premium these days (much MB for the buck), but
    > it is always nice to have optimal use of the available capacity.
    > Also, as an aside, huge amounts of itty-bitty-files only tend to contribute
    > to fragmentation on your disc.
    >
    > just my take on it.
    > :-))
    >
    > george

    While I understand what you're saying, George, it's my opinion that
    worrying about half a megabyte of space -fragmentation and all - is not
    very productive. "If it's not life threatening--" ;^)

    --
    Sharon F
    MS-MVP ~ Windows Shell/User
    In memory of our dear friend, MVP Alex Nichol
  5. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    george wrote:
    >
    >
    > Agreed they are small, but they still take up quite a lot of diskspace,
    > notably because they are small.
    > eg. on mine there are some 160 'shortcuts' with a total size of 95,078 > bytes taking up 655,360 bytes of diskspace.

    And we have users with over 1000 shortcuts in their Recent documents..
    I'm not worried about the diskspace, but this affects login times. We're
    using roaming profiles and these small files slows down the login
    process.

    -sk
  6. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    On Thu, 24 Mar 2005 08:57:37 -0800, Sami Kapanen wrote:

    > george wrote:
    >> [5 quoted lines suppressed]
    >
    > And we have users with over 1000 shortcuts in their Recent documents..
    > I'm not worried about the diskspace, but this affects login times. We're
    > using roaming profiles and these small files slows down the login
    > process.
    >
    > -sk

    If you believe this to be the source of the login delays, periodically run
    a script to delete the shortcuts from that folder.

    --
    Sharon F
    MS-MVP ~ Windows Shell/User
    In memory of our dear friend, MVP Alex Nichol
  7. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    Wesley Vogel wrote:
    >
    > 210. Right hand side
    > Change the Number of Recent Documents to 25
    > http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp_tweaks.htm

    That doesn't change the fact that it still keeps all the shortcuts in
    the folder, it just shows 25 instead of the default 15 in the list of
    Windows.

    -sk
  8. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    How To Display, Use, and Clear "My Recent Documents" on the Start Menu in
    Windows XP
    http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;307875

    To not show your most recently used documents on the Start menu
    1 Right-click the Start button, and then click Properties.
    2 On the Start Menu tab, click Start menu, and then click Customize.
    3 On the Advanced tab, UNSelect the List my most recently opened documents
    check box.
    -----

    Using TweakUI
    [+] Explorer

    ? Allow Recent Documents on Start menu
    [[This check box enables the display of “Documents” on the classic start
    menu and enables the “List my most recently opened documents” checkbox on
    the Start menu customization dialog.]]

    ? Clear document history on exit
    [[This check box will control whether Explorer will clear the recent
    documents history, run dialog history and typed-URL history when
    you log off]]

    ? Maintain document history
    [[This enables the tracking of recently opened documents on the Start menu
    and on the file menu of many applications. (Note that some applications do
    not respect this setting). ]]
    -----

    Download TweakUI here >>>

    Microsoft PowerToys for Windows XP
    http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/pro/downloads/powertoys.asp

    Tweak UI
    TweakUI.exe
    ----

    Tweak UI for Windows XP Guide
    http://www.winxpsolution.com/Tweakuixppro.aspx
    -----

    Registry settings for TweakUI tweaks:

    HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\Explorer
    Value Name: NoRecentDocsMenu
    Value Type: REG_DWORD
    Value Data: 0 or 1
    0 = Yes, allow recent docs
    1 = No, do not allow recent docs

    Value Name: ClearRecentDocsOnExit
    Value Type: REG_DWORD
    Value Data: 0 or 1
    0 = No don't clear
    1 = Yes clear them

    Value Name: NoRecentDocsHistory
    Value Type: REG_DWORD
    Value Data: 0 or 1
    0 = Yes history
    1 = No history
    ----------------------

    If XP Pro you can use Group Edit...
    Start | Run | Type: gpedit.msc | OK |
    Navigate to >>>
    User Configuration\Administrative Templates\Start Menu and Taskbar\

    Remove the Documents menu from the Start menu.

    [[The Documents menu contains links to the nonprogram files that users have
    most recently opened. It appears so that users can easily reopen their
    documents.
    If you enable this setting, the system saves document shortcuts but does not
    display them in the Documents menu. If you later disable it or set it to Not
    Configured, the document shortcuts saved before the setting was enabled and
    while it was in effect appear in the Documents menu.
    Note: This setting does not prevent Windows programs from displaying
    shortcuts to recently opened documents. See the "Do not keep history of
    recently opened documents" setting.
    Also, see the "Do not keep history of recently opened documents" and "Clear
    history of recenTly opened documents on exit" policies in this folder.
    This setting also does not hide document shortcuts displayed in the Open
    dialog box. See the "Hide the dropdown list of recent files" setting. ]]

    Do not keep history of recently opened documents

    [[Prevents the operating system and installed programs from creating and
    displaying shortcuts to recently opened documents.
    If you enable this setting, the system and Windows programs do not create
    shortcuts to documents opened while the setting is in effect. Also, they
    retain but do not display existing document shortcuts. The system empties
    the Documents menu on the Start menu, and Windows programs do not display
    shortcuts at the bottom of the File menu.
    If you disable this setting, the system defaults are enforced. Disabling
    this setting has no effect on the system.
    Note: The system saves document shortcuts in the user profile in the
    System-drive\Documents and Settings\User-name\Recent folder.
    If you enable this setting but do not enable the "Remove Documents menu from
    Start Menu" setting, the Documents menu appears on the Start menu, but it is
    empty.
    If you enable this setting, but then later disable it or set it to Not
    Configured, the document shortcuts saved before the setting was enabled
    reappear in the Documents menu and program File menus.
    This setting does not hide document shortcuts displayed in the Open dialog
    box.]]

    Clear history of recently opened documents on exit

    [[If you enable this setting, the system deletes shortcuts to recently used
    document files when the user logs off. As a result, the Documents menu on
    the Start menu is always empty when the user logs on.
    If you disable or do not configure this setting, the system retains document
    shortcuts, and when a user logs on the Documents menu appears just as it did
    when the user logged off.
    Note: The system saves document shortcuts in the user profile in the
    System-drive\Documents and Settings\User-name\Recent folder. ]]
    -----

    Registry settings for gpedit.msc:

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\
    Explorer

    The registry entries are DWORD values. A value of 1 is enabled, and a value
    of 0 is disabled.

    Policy: Remove Recent Documents item from Start Menu
    Description: Removes the Recent Documents folder from the Start menu. Also
    removes the corresponding checkbox from the Start menu customization CPL.
    Registry Value: "NoRecentDocsMenu"

    Policy: Clear history of recent documents on exit
    Description: Deletes all shortcuts shown in the Recent Documents menu when
    the user logs off.
    Registry Value: "ClearRecentDocsOnExit"

    --
    Hope this helps. Let us know.

    Wes
    MS-MVP Windows Shell/User

    In news:4242F1C2.7A6@TAKETHISOFF.hamk.fi,
    Sami Kapanen <sami.kapanen@TAKETHISOFF.hamk.fi> hunted and pecked:
    > Wesley Vogel wrote:
    >>
    >> 210. Right hand side
    >> Change the Number of Recent Documents to 25
    >> http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp_tweaks.htm
    >
    > That doesn't change the fact that it still keeps all the shortcuts in
    > the folder, it just shows 25 instead of the default 15 in the list of
    > Windows.
    >
    > -sk
  9. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    "Sharon F" wrote:
    > On Thu, 24 Mar 2005 08:57:37 -0800, Sami Kapanen wrote:
    >
    > > george wrote:
    > >> [5 quoted lines suppressed]
    > >
    > > And we have users with over 1000 shortcuts in their Recent documents..
    > > I'm not worried about the diskspace, but this affects login times. We're
    > > using roaming profiles and these small files slows down the login
    > > process.
    > >
    > > -sk
    >
    > If you believe this to be the source of the login delays, periodically run
    > a script to delete the shortcuts from that folder.
    >
    > --
    > Sharon F
    > MS-MVP ~ Windows Shell/User
    > In memory of our dear friend, MVP Alex Nichol
    >

    Actually, from what I can tell, this should not affect login times at all,
    but could affect log *off* times in certain cases. I've got roaming
    profiles and folder redirection implemented on our network in a fairly
    standard, microsoft-recommended config. The "My Recent Documents" folder
    only gets updated when logging off, propagating files from the local machine
    to the server, and only copying files missing/changed from the network
    profile. If the network folder is empty (or completely different) it *will*
    copy all 1000 or so shortcuts up to the network when you log off. It does
    *not* do the reverse when logging in. I didn't see one right away, but if
    there is a group policy to control this particular behavior, ours is not
    configured. Also, as far as I know, folder redirection is not available for
    this folder. I can't really think of a reason why windows copies these up to
    the server other than as a backup that could be manually restored to the
    local machine if some sort of disaster occurs.

    For example, if the local "My Recent Documents" folder is empty when you
    login, it does *not* copy any files to that directory from the network
    profile folder, but again, when you log off, any shortcuts in the local
    folder will be copied to the network profile location (or access time/date
    will be updated if the shortcut already exists). Now if you have a user who
    has been using several different machines over a period of time (or
    significant use) you may get into a situation where it is copying 1000
    completely different shortcuts to the network each time they log off of a
    different pc.

    In succession (and as the same user of course), try logging in to a couple
    of different machines: access some documents, then log off and move to
    another machine. Then go back to the first machine you tried. If your
    network is working like mine the "My Recent Documents" folder will remain
    unique for each machine, in essence showing you the most recent documents
    that user accessed from *that* machine only.

    In terms of disk space, my 500K of shortcuts are taking up over 5MB on disk!
    If you are worried about the disk space on your server, or logoff times are
    unusually long for some users, you could enable the group policy "Clear
    history of recently opened documents on exit", you should then be able to
    manually delete the contents of the recent documents folder on the network,
    and with the policy in force, the network folder *should* stay clear.

    Setting it this way will clear the recent documents area on the start menu
    every time the user logs off, while still allowing it to fill up during the
    current session. However the local "My Recent Documents" folder will continue
    to fill up, even though the menu is being cleared.

    Here's where it gets a little tricky: the recent documents folder is also
    used by applications to store the "most recent" list you often find at the
    bottom of the file menu. If you are worried about local disk space as well
    as space on your server, you can enable the policy "Do not keep history of
    recently opened documents". And windows will make sure the directory stays
    empty, however this will also disable the "most recent" lists in all of your
    applications as well, and personally, I *like* those. A lot. If you and
    your users can do without them, then you probably want to also enable "Remove
    Documents menu from Start Menu". All of the policies I have mentioned are
    under "User Configuration\Administrative Templates\Start Menu and Taskbar".


    On Another Note:

    If you are indeed having problems with slow login times and it is on XP
    machines only, check that your Windows DNS server is listed as the Primary
    DNS server in your tcp/ip settings on each client. List external DNS servers
    for the internet as secondaries.

    Another thing that can slow down login times is failing to redirect large
    folders such as My Documents and Application Data to a network share, thus
    removing them from the roaming profile folder.

    Hope this helps George,

    John Morales
    Iguana Gurus
    Milwaukee, WI
  10. Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.configuration_manage (More info?)

    =?Utf-8?B?SWd1YW5hR3VydXM=?= wrote:
    >
    > Now if you have a user who
    > has been using several different machines over a period of time (or
    > significant use) you may get into a situation where it is copying 1000
    > completely different shortcuts to the network each time they log off of a
    > different pc.

    Which is the case in many academic/school environments ;-)

    Well, I configured GroupPolicy to clear the list at log off.

    -sk
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