If you want to clear Windows Search or device search history, then this article will guide you through the steps. You can delete the Taskbar search history from Windows Settings. It is also possible to turn off the search history collection from Registry Editor too.
Whenever you search for an app or anything else using the Taskbar search box, Windows stores the information. It does that to provide better and quicker information by adopting your search behavior. Also, it shows the recent search items when you press Win+S or click on the Taskbar search box. For instance, if you have searched for Notepad recently, you can find it when you click on this search icon or box. If you do not want to keep this information visible, here is what you can do to make it disappear.
Clear Windows 11 Search History & remove Recent Activities
In Windows 11, the steps to clear the search history and remove recent activities are different from Windows 10. We have listed these steps below:
- Right-click on the Start menu and select Settings.
- After the Settings app is launched, select Privacy & Security from the left pane.
- Now, click on the Search permissions tab on the right side. This tab is available in the Windows permissions section.
- Scroll down till you find the History section.
- Click on the Clear device search history button to delete the recent search history on Windows 11.
If you do not want Windows 11 to store your search history on your device, you can turn off the Search history on this device button.
Clear Windows 10 Search History & remove Recent Activities
To clear device search history in Windows 10, follow these steps-
- Press Win+I to open Windows Settings on your computer.
- Go to the Search option.
- Make sure you are in the Permissions & History tab.
- Find out the History section.
- Click on the Clear device search history button.
First, you have to open Windows Settings on your computer. Press Win+I to open it quickly.
After that, click on the Search option and make sure you are in the Permissions & History tab.
Here you will find a heading called History. If so, click on the Clear device search history button.
Now, your Windows Search history has been removed.
For confirmation, you can click on the Taskbar search box to check if Recent items are available or not. If not, it has been removed.
In case you want to prevent Windows 10 from keeping the search history locally, you can click on the toggle to turn it Off.
Using Registry Editor
You can also use Registry Editor to prevent Windows 11/10 from saving your search history. Before getting started with the Registry Editor process, it is recommended to create a System Restore point.
Now, press Win+R, type
regedit, and hit the Enter button.
Click the Yes button in the UAC prompt to open Registry Editor.
After that, navigate to this path-
Right-click on SearchSettings > New > DWORD (32-bit) Value and name it as IsDeviceSearchHistoryEnabled.
Keep the Value data as 0. If it is already there, double-click on it to the Value data as 0.
Click the OK button to save the change.
If you want Windows 11/10 to save your search history, change the Value data from 0 to 1.
Now, Windows won’t store the Windows Search history locally.
Hope it helps.
Can I delete Quick Access?
Quick Access is a placeholder where you can pin the most recently used files and folders for easy access. You can unpin the files and folders from Quick Access anytime. For this, right-click on the file and folder that you want to remove and select Remove from Quick Access.
Do note that removing the files and folders from Quick Access will not clear your Windows Search history. You have to follow the steps described above in this article to clear your Search History on Windows 11/10.
Where do files go when removed from Quick Access?
Removing the files and folders from Quick Access does not delete them from your system. Your files remain stored in the directory where you have saved them.