Clear All History

Clear Windows history

Windows keeps records about your computer activity in order to provide a more pleasant computer experience. But those history tracks can compromise your privacy and provide a way for others to view what you have been doing, searching, downloading, running, saving, what documents and files you have just opened and more.

This article describes how to clear how to clear different Windows history tracks from your computer.

Clear Windows Temporary files

The Windows temporary directory stores Windows and other programs temporary files. This directory can become cluttered and contain files from programs you no longer have installed or files which may compromise your privacy.

Clear Clipboard

Clipboard information can be easily seen by anyone who can access your computer or by the web sites you visit that could be a privacy issue as we often use the copy and paste commands while working with sensitive information like logins, passwords, credit card numbers and other secure information. To protect your privacy you should regularly clear clipboard.

Clear recent documents

Windows stores a list of documents and files you have recently opened and worked with. If you use a public computer you may want to clear your recent documents list as any user can view this list in the Start menu and directly link to any of the items that you have opened. You may clear the recent documents manually or use special tools.

Empty the Recycle Bin

If you delete a file it often means that this file will be moved into the Recycle Bin (not deleted from your computer at all) and you can restore it from the Recycle Bin.

Clear Windows Run History (recently run programs list)

Windows stores a list of programs you have run using the Run option in the Start Menu. And anyone who has access to your computer can see the list of programs that you've run.

Clear Windows Search history

When you use the Search option available in the Start Menu, Windows keeps a list of the files you searched for and the items you searched for in those files. And this search history will be visible to anyone who begins a new search. To view the Windows search history, open the Search results window (Start -> Search -> Files & Folders or Computers). Even if this information isn't shown in the Search results windows, it is kept in a Windows registry and can be easily viewed.

Clear Windows Explorer UserAssist Data

Every time you open a program from the Start Menu, the date and number of times you used it is stored in an encrypted database. Windows keeps full run history under the key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\UserAssist.

If you don't clear UserAssist data that contains the Start Menu open programs history, it can compromise your privacy and security and increase the number of entries in the registry slowing Windows down.

Clear view preferences for desktop and windows you opened (Streams and StreamMRU)

Windows stores up to 28 entries containing view preferences for the desktop and windows that you open in a most-recently-used (MRU) list. When you close a window, the view preferences (size, location) for each window are saved in a subkey of the Streams key.

When the desktop or one of the windows is no longer included in the MRU list, the desktop or a window uses the default settings the next time the desktop or a window is refreshed. When you make changes to the desktop or a window, the view preferences for the desktop or a window are moved to the top of the MRU list.

Clear the recently open/save files list (ComDlg32\OpenSaveMRU and ComDlg32\LastVisitedMRU)

Most applications use the Windows-provided dialogs for open/save operations. The CommonDialog control provides a standard set of dialog boxes for operations such as opening and saving files, setting print options, and selecting colors and fonts. The ComDlg32 control which is used in many applications saves its own set of history information separate from other Windows history.

Every time you open/save a file Windows keeps a record of this activity - Windows records the names of files that you open or save. So, very often when you choose "open" or "save" item from application's file menu, Windows displays a drop-down list of your most recently used files or opens the certain directory.

Clear page files

Windows uses part of a hard drive space as "virtual memory". A page file (pagefile.sys) is a space on the hard disk used as the virtual memory extension of computer RAM. If Windows does not have enough actual memory, it uses a page file. Page file (pagefile sys) is a hidden system file (pagefile.sys). If you want to see it, you should change your file viewing settings to "show hidden and system files".

A pagefile (pagefile.sys) is usually located on the drive where your system is installed on, While working on PC, you use different programs - so page file (pagefile.sys) may contain sensitive or confidential information, some applications may store "clear" passwords. To protect your privacy you may want to delete pagefile (page file) so nobody could see your data in the pagefile.

Sunday, October 22, 2017 
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