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Disabling the “Recent Documents” menu in Ubuntu / Gnome

Originally retrieved from this thread March 27th 2010.

Gnome stores your “recent documents” in a file called .recently-used.xbel. To disable the menu, we simply delete the file and then create a directory with the same name, effectively breaking Gnome’s ability to store anything in the file.

The fix is performed by executing the following commands at a terminal:

rm ~/.recently-used.xbel
mkdir ~/.recently-used.xbel

Then go to Places > Recent Documents and select Clear Recent Documents.

The menu item should now grey out.

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