I am trying to remove some files out of the 'recents' view of the files iOS app without actually deleting the file. According to this other forum, this is not possible: https://forums.macrumors.com/threads/file-app-how-to-clear-recent-file.2069648/

Is this still the case? Or maybe possible in the meanwhile?

My 'recents' list is currently too long, for this view to be of any help for me at this point.

  • Why wouldn’t recents just be what is recent and you’ll get newer content when it arrives? I’m trying to understand the end goal here or how it could be too long. – bmike Apr 6 at 18:18
  • Maybe it is because of the way I work… I don't open one file again and again on the iPad. I open many different files from various locations and at some point I would simply like to have a fresh list in the 'recents'. To me, it feels like it misses here the option 'clear menu' which I see on macOS under ' > Recent items'… And yes, I know the 'clear menu' option on the macOS isn't clearing the 'recents' in the Finder window either. – Giuseppe Mat Apr 15 at 7:24
  • Aah - that's the piece I was not understanding - recents would be sticky on each device and not combined across all accesses to be of the most use to you. – bmike Apr 15 at 12:03

No. "Recents" is just all your files sorted by most recently used. So if you have a file in Files.app, it will appear there.


AFAIK this is still not possible. To remove the recent files just use the menu item at the end of the list.

  • Which menu item do you refer to? This question is asking about Files.app on iOS, are you perhaps answering about macOS? – grg Mar 25 at 19:23
  • At the bottom of the recent files is an item called "Clear History" or "Clear Recents". – Frank Blome Mar 26 at 12:18
  • Please could you add a screenshot to your answer so we can see what you’re seeing? I can’t find any such option in the Recents tab, or any app’s UIDocumentPickerViewController. – grg Mar 26 at 12:28
  • Sorry, I slipped to macOS in my stressed brain. In iOS there is no clear history or recent. The only think you can do is a long press to activate the context menu and select "Delete". – Frank Blome Mar 26 at 12:46

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