Get a list of all recently accessed files with RecentFilesView

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RecentFilesView is a small, no install freeware program that can retrieve and save the list of the most recently accessed files.

If you’ve ever needed a list of the last opened files on your machine, RecentFilesView is for you. It provides a much more comprehensive list than the one in the “Recent Documents” folder. Here are some scenarios I could think of where you wil find this program very useful:

  • If you are working on a project and for whatever reason need to create a list of all the relevant files for that project. With RecentFilesView you can export a comprehensive or partial list to a text or CSV files and edit that as needed.
  • If you are uncertain as to which files or file versions you were using when you were working on a project 5 days ago. With RecentFilesView you should be able to survey that history in a snap.
  • Please post other uses you might think of in the comments.

Here are more notes on this app:

  • Sorting: you can sort by created time, modified time, executed time, and filename.
  • Which files will be listed?: those files that were either opened from the desktop or from an application. It will list folders that were opened as well.. It will display your file activity, not files that were created or accessed by programs, such as temp files or cached files saved by your browser. Files that are deleted will also be listed, although it will indicate in the list that the file is no longer available.
  • Where does it get the list from?: from recent folders and the registry. More info on this on the program page.
  • How far back will it go?: I’ve been using this program for about three days, and the list of files, which goes back 10 days, is at 158 and keeps growing whenever I access a new file. I do not believe that the program is saving this list but is rather retrieving it every time.
  • Exporting: save your list as a text, CSV, XML, or HTML file. You can select a sub-set of file using CTRL or Shift selecting and export only the entries you are interested in.
  • No install program: just unzip and use.
  • Command-line use: if you need to, you can use RecentFilesView from the command line.

The verdict: a very nice, simple program that does what it does very well. I imagine that for those who need a program like this RecentFilesView will be a very welcome addition to their set of tools.

Version Tested: 1.05

Compatibility: WinAll.

Go to the program page to download the latest version (approx 35K).