Clearing Lists in the Insert Hyperlink Dialog Box

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated April 4, 2020)
This tip applies to Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365


When Willem displays the Insert Hyperlink dialog box, it shows a list of recent folders, recent web pages, and recent e-mail addresses in case he wants to use them again. Willem wonders if there is a way to clear these lists.

The short answer is no, there is no way that we've been able to find to clear these lists. The longer answer is worth considering, however.

When you display the Insert Hyperlink dialog box (just press Ctrl+K), you see a series of controls that display recent information. For instance, if you click on Browsed Pages, you'll see a list of recent pages you've visited. (See Figure 1.)

Figure 1. The Insert Hyperlink dialog box.

Note that if you click the down-arrow next to the Address field (bottom of the dialog box) you'll see an additional list of possible choices for recent links. The interesting glimmer of hope is that you can clear this list that is displayed in the Address field drop-down. All you need to do is to edit the Registry and delete this entry:

HKEY_Current_User/Software/Microsoft/Internet Explorer/TypedURLs

Note that this is for Explorer, but the list is maintained even if you are using the Edge browser. Delete the Registry entry, and nothing will appear when you use the Address drop-down.

The major lists, though—the ones shown in the upper part of the Insert Hyperlink dialog box—are of unknown origin. There is nothing from Microsoft sources that points to where these lists originate. The information in these lists does not appear in any browser history, nor does it appear in any Registry entry. (I will admit, though, that it is possible that the information is encrypted somehow in one of these locations.) If it cannot be located, it cannot be deleted.

It should be noted that clearing this information cannot be done in VBA, either. There is nothing that allows you to access these lists as a collection or as individual items.

Until Microsoft is willing to pull back the curtain just a bit further, how to clear these lists remains a mystery.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (5205) applies to Microsoft Word 2007, 2010, 2013, 2016, 2019, and Word in Microsoft 365.

Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...


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What is 7 + 4?

2022-11-09 04:17:25


Thanks for this tip! I would like to add this:
In Microsoft Edge, clearing the history under "Clear browsing data" didn't work, but I found that clearing the history under “Clear browsing data for Internet Explorer” did the trick.

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