Please Note: This article is written for users of the following Microsoft Word versions: 2007 and 2010. If you are using an earlier version (Word 2003 or earlier), this tip may not work for you. For a version of this tip written specifically for earlier versions of Word, click here: Deleting MRU Entries.

Deleting MRU Entries

Written by Allen Wyatt (last updated September 7, 2020)
This tip applies to Word 2007 and 2010


2

The MRU refers to "most recently used," which is the list of files you have used recently in Word. This list is displayed in different ways, depending on the version of Word you are using:

  • In Word 2007 click the Office button.
  • In Word 2010 click the File tab of the ribbon and then click Recent at the left side of the screen.

This list is a wonderful aid most of the time, but is also very revealing. Everyone who uses your computer knows the name of the last file (or files) you've been working on. You may not always like this.

If you want to get rid of a single entry in the MRU list, you can only accomplish the task in Word 2010. To remove a file name from the MRU list, just right-click on it. Word displays a Context menu and one of the choices is Remove from List. Choose this option and the file is immediately removed from the MRU list. This does not delete the actual file; it only removes the entry from the MRU list.

You should note that once a file is removed from the MRU list, you can't undo the action. Indeed, if you press Ctrl+Z (which normally is used to undo an editing action), Word does nothing; the file is still missing from the MRU list.

If you are using Word 2007 you can only wipe out the entire MRU list. You do that by following these steps:

  1. Click the Office button and then click Word Options. Word displays the Word Options dialog box.
  2. At the left side of the dialog box click Advanced.
  3. Scroll down until you see the Display settings. (See Figure 1.)
  4. Figure 1. The display settings in the Word Options dialog box.

  5. Change the first setting ("Show this Number of Recent Documents") to 0.
  6. Click OK.

The entire MRU list is now gone. Repeat the steps, but this time set the number in step 4 back to however many files you want to appear in the MRU list.

WordTips is your source for cost-effective Microsoft Word training. (Microsoft Word is the most popular word processing software in the world.) This tip (10276) applies to Microsoft Word 2007 and 2010. You can find a version of this tip for the older menu interface of Word here: Deleting MRU Entries.

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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Comments

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What is 3 - 0?

2016-12-06 13:17:22

Rick

I am using a 2003 version of word and tried this deleting of MRU entries to clear the envelopes address list.
It did not do the trick.
Anyone know how to clear the envelope MRU drop down list?


2015-12-24 06:54:27

Ronald Gussie

Figure 1 does not display the correct menu item.
It should show the Display section under the Advance option, not the Display option.


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