How to remove recent projects from Visual Studio Start Page

February 6, 2007 at 12:00 am 79 comments

(This is not a new trick but just in case you are looking for it.)

Visual Studio Recent Project List

Sometimes we create projects just for experimentation and then soon after we are done with the experimentation, we delete the project from the file system in order not to clutter up our working environment. But what about Visual Studio? The Start page of Visual Studio has a list of recent projects and it is meant for a convenient feature. But for the experimental projects that no longer exist, that list does not really reflect the reality.

To remove the projects from the list, follow these steps:

  1. Close Visual Studio if it is running.
  2. Start the Registry Editor (run regedit).
    Registry Editor
  3. Navigate to this registry key:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\8.0\ProjectMRUList
    Registry Editor 2
  4. Then delete the key that has the project you do not want to keep in the list.

A little note to keep in mind is that the list only lists consecutive items starting File1. So if in the above list I deleted File6, then only projects corresponding to File1 to File5 will be displayed in the recent project list. File7 and above will not be displayed. If in case you like File7 and above to be displayed, you will need to rename one of the keys so that they form a consecutive numbered list.

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79 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Lucy O Sullivan  |  March 20, 2007 at 9:20 am

    Thanks a million for this – it is something that has niggled at me for quite a while now as I much prefer to prototype new code rather than test in the development code.

    Reply
  • 2. Jeff  |  September 6, 2007 at 9:09 am

    I find it easier to move the project directory or delete it. Next time you want to open it, VS will not find it and ask if you want to remove the entry from the Recent Project list.

    Reply
  • 3. Srini  |  September 14, 2007 at 11:49 am

    Thanks a lot. This is a great help. I wish you all the best.

    Reply
  • 4. DeAnna  |  October 30, 2007 at 8:11 am

    Sometimes I delete the file, but it stays in the Recent Projects forever even after it has acknowledged it’s not in the directory anymore. Especially with website projects. Thank you so much!

    Reply
  • 5. steve  |  November 30, 2007 at 1:09 am

    Thanks a lot, I haven’t tried it yet but from the other people’s posts, I guess it does.

    I installed Visual Studio about 2 hours ago and have spent the last 1.5 hours trying to figure out how to dump the test projects.

    The local and on-line help had no information on it and right clicking on the project name doesn’t do anything. And of course, the delete option is not enabled if you highlight the project.

    I can’t believe that the only way to dump a test project is to go into the registry. And, possibly have to rename other projects to maintain the sequential-ness so you can still see other projects after the deleted one.

    This is absolutely the dumbest thing I have ever seen somebody at Microsoft shouild be fired.

    Reply
  • 6. Andrew  |  December 13, 2007 at 3:19 am

    Excellent. Just what I’ve been wanting to know for ages. I agree with Steve. Microsoft should have designed it so this can be done directly from Visual Studio,

    Reply
  • 7. Vipsis  |  January 10, 2008 at 3:55 am

    Thanks a lot. Beer from me :)

    Reply
  • 8. Ben  |  January 14, 2008 at 7:14 am

    Thanks, this was something that I’ve wanted to do for awhile, since being a newbie I make a lot more mistakes and it was really irritating to see all of my mistake files there everytime I opened up VS, glad they are gone now.

    Reply
  • 9. Billy  |  January 27, 2008 at 6:11 am

    Thank You this is BRILLIANT :)

    But if VS is so good why is is so difficuct to delete Projects?

    Reply
  • 10. Berdy  |  January 28, 2008 at 12:22 am

    Well done for posting this, its always annoyed me too but not any more.

    Thanks

    Reply
  • 11. Ajay  |  January 30, 2008 at 7:27 am

    Thanks a lot! It was very helpful.

    Reply
  • 12. vinod  |  February 14, 2008 at 9:53 pm

    thanks a lot for this

    Reply
  • 13. Naveen  |  April 11, 2008 at 8:01 am

    A nice tip!!!

    Reply
  • 14. Imad  |  April 14, 2008 at 4:17 am

    This tip kicks ass

    Reply
  • 15. Steve  |  April 14, 2008 at 5:41 pm

    Thanks!!!!

    I spent the last 2 hours trying to get rid of my test projects.
    I can’t believe Microsoft could leave out something as basic as this. AND!!! they’ve left it out on so many versions. This is version 2008.

    Reply
  • 16. Kailash Dhondiyal  |  June 18, 2008 at 10:48 pm

    Jeff’s trick is quite easy…..
    “I find it easier to move the project directory or delete it. Next time you want to open it, VS will not find it and ask if you want to remove the entry from the Recent Project list.”

    BTW thanx a tonn man coz it gave me a new approach.

    Reply
  • 17. cort  |  July 24, 2008 at 9:49 am

    Thanks but I completely agree that this difficulty in eliminating projects is just bs. I am a beginner and have several books on this and there’s nothing in them on this. I have all these broken projects littering the interface. Its ridiculous.

    Reply
  • 18. Jorge Salinas  |  July 31, 2008 at 8:03 am

    Thanks a lot, this is very useful.

    Reply
  • 19. kumar  |  September 11, 2008 at 10:51 pm

    Very good post. Thanks a lot :)

    Reply
  • 20. Abdullah Khan G.H.  |  October 22, 2008 at 9:50 pm

    Fantastic Article. I have been looking for a easier way since ages.

    Thank U Very Much…..

    Reply
  • 21. sunitha  |  November 4, 2008 at 9:56 am

    Thanks you so much

    Reply
  • 22. Zaigham  |  November 22, 2008 at 10:41 pm

    THANK YOU, You are Time Saviour

    Reply
  • 23. Alek  |  January 1, 2009 at 7:52 pm

    Hi. Good site.

    Reply
  • [...] Regedit, sadly, to the rescue – Link [...]

    Reply
  • 25. Brammieman  |  January 28, 2009 at 1:59 am

    Thanks for the tip!

    The person who decided mru lists should be in the registry should be spanked.
    Guess I could use VS to make an app to maintain the list:) so I can remove that project from it as soon as I’m done.

    Reply
  • 26. M  |  January 28, 2009 at 8:19 am

    Thank you Thank you and Thank You

    Reply
  • 27. Ankit  |  February 16, 2009 at 10:29 pm

    this is very user full link.

    Run–> RegEdit and navigate to

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\\ProjectMRUList delete unnecessary list.

    regards,
    ANKIT CHMAPANERIYA
    SURAT

    Reply
  • 28. Jason  |  April 9, 2009 at 7:27 pm

    I believe the reason microsoft did not include the delete option was because they were afraid that programmers might delete the project accidentally or something. Quite impossible for them to leave out such a basic option. I suppose they have their own reasons. This tutorial is great, microsoft should have something like this on the MSDN. Thank you by the way.

    Reply
  • 29. Muhammad Azhar  |  April 14, 2009 at 8:23 pm

    I really appretiate and thankfull for nice help.

    Reply
  • 30. Sumit  |  April 15, 2009 at 9:10 pm

    thanks a lot

    Reply
  • 31. Sumit  |  May 1, 2009 at 9:06 pm

    Thanks a million. Bravo

    Reply
  • 32. Free Press Releases  |  May 26, 2009 at 8:06 am

    Good Tip but I used Jeff’s tip, deleting the project and it worked exactly as he said. very safe, very easy!

    Reply
  • 33. Jalal Singh  |  September 17, 2009 at 4:18 am

    Very very very Thanks……… All the best………..

    Reply
  • 34. gav  |  September 27, 2009 at 4:22 pm

    thanks a lot. very helpful.

    Reply
  • 35. kiran  |  October 3, 2009 at 3:01 am

    thanks for this solution,it’s really great.

    Reply
  • 36. zerket  |  October 21, 2009 at 6:14 pm

    Thanks !!! it’s great!

    Reply
  • 37. dantinh  |  October 30, 2009 at 9:23 am

    Thanks! Thank you very much ! It’s really great!

    Reply
  • 38. Rakesh  |  November 18, 2009 at 10:28 pm

    Thanks a lot dude!!!!!!

    Reply
  • 39. Tim  |  November 20, 2009 at 7:24 am

    You have performed a very helpful public service!!!

    Reply
  • 40. Yasin  |  December 3, 2009 at 12:05 pm

    thanks;)

    Reply
  • 41. Sanjeev  |  December 21, 2009 at 10:53 pm

    Hi,

    Thanks for this post. I am able to remove projects from Recent Projects list.

    I have one more problem with my Visual Studio. In Recent Projects list there is unknown Icons at the left side rather than Visual Studio Icon for projects listed.

    Can you please tell me how can I get there visual studio icon.

    Thanks,
    Sanjeev

    Reply
  • 42. Sanjeev  |  December 21, 2009 at 10:54 pm

    I have one more problem with my Visual Studio. In Recent Projects list there is unknown Icons at the left side rather than Visual Studio Icon for projects listed.

    Can you please tell me how can I get there visual studio icon.

    Thanks,
    Sanjeev

    Reply
  • 43. Ngoc Phu  |  January 18, 2010 at 7:44 pm

    Thanks a lot. It works well. :)

    Reply
  • 44. raju  |  January 23, 2010 at 5:34 am

    I need recent project title for asp dot net

    Reply
  • 45. ssheidi  |  February 1, 2010 at 1:56 pm

    Very Helpful. Much Thanks!

    Reply
  • 46. Justin  |  February 13, 2010 at 12:44 pm

    This is why I like Xcode on the Mac so much better. I can move project directories with Xcode open or closed and the projects list is updated with the new location – no need to delete it or reopen the project just to get Xcode to recognize it. If I delete a project it automatically removes it from the list. :) Anyway I have some things that I’m required to do in Windows and this is a great hint to get around Microsoft’s stupidity… makes it possible to get rid of all the junk…

    Reply
  • 47. e11world  |  February 23, 2010 at 3:14 pm

    It didn’t work for me. I deleted and renamed the last one to have only 1 and 2 and VS still shows the list of 7 recent projects. I went back to the registry and they’re still just the 2 showing but VS didn’t change anything.
    I might have to restart computer and see if that changes it.

    Reply
  • 48. e11world  |  February 26, 2010 at 11:14 am

    UPDATE:
    I found the reg keys here HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\VisualStudio\9.0\ProjectMRULis and deleted them. That worked for me now.

    Reply
  • 49. Cialis  |  March 7, 2010 at 3:19 am

    nBmvQg Excellent article, I will take note. Many thanks for the story!

    Reply
  • 50. Partha  |  April 6, 2010 at 4:13 am

    Seems it’s not so hard.
    http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa991991(VS.80).aspx

    Reply
  • 51. Panda  |  April 7, 2010 at 9:39 am

    Looks over complicated. Gracias.

    Reply
  • 52. Randy Kielan  |  April 8, 2010 at 2:10 pm

    Wow!
    I am a student and in the first week of my Visual Basic 2008 class.
    I spent hours on the Microsoft website and UTUBE, and my textbook was useless also!
    Thank you, Soooo much.

    Sincerly Randy Kielan

    Reply
  • 53. priya  |  April 11, 2010 at 10:39 pm

    Thanks a Lot…. Truely speaking this is a great help for me.. once again thank you so much..

    Reply
  • 54. Bidda  |  May 2, 2010 at 10:18 pm

    Haa Dhik asa… (Yep , its OK)

    Reply
  • 56. Jack  |  May 28, 2010 at 12:45 pm

    Thanks a heap it did the job strait away =)

    Reply
  • 57. B S Bohidar  |  June 6, 2010 at 5:52 am

    Recently opened web projects are not found in recent project list of VSTS 2008.What is way out ?

    Reply
  • 58. strizz  |  July 2, 2010 at 3:54 pm

    If you don’t want to have to edit your registry or close Visual Studio (that can be painful depending on the complexity of the solution) you can just use windows explorer to temporarily rename the .sln file you want to omit, then click on it in the Visual Studio recent projects list. Visual Studio will not be able to find it and then ask if you want to remove it from the list.

    Reply
  • 59. مهدی  |  August 29, 2010 at 4:22 pm

    مرسی .. کارم راه افتاد

    Reply
  • 60. CarlosUrbina  |  March 11, 2011 at 8:57 am

    Thanks a lot. Great post!

    Reply
  • 61. etem  |  April 17, 2011 at 11:17 pm

    Thanks a lot.

    a little not: i have permanently deleted file1 and i started visual studio again. i have seen that my the another project had removed. i continued to read this article and i saw a writing that starts with “a little note” :)

    anyway, was no longer the…

    Reply
  • 62. spagotie  |  June 7, 2011 at 9:52 pm

    maraming salamat po

    Reply
  • 63. Mayank Taneja  |  June 20, 2011 at 9:13 pm

    helped a lot!! thnx!!

    Reply
  • 64. virankumar  |  June 26, 2011 at 8:56 pm

    thanks a lot … it will helpfull for all………

    Reply
  • 65. Neeraj  |  October 1, 2011 at 10:52 pm

    Thanks a lot for this!

    Reply
  • 66. Bharat gunjal  |  October 9, 2011 at 9:27 pm

    thnks

    Reply
  • 67. Chandan  |  October 18, 2011 at 1:36 pm

    superb..you made my day!!!

    Reply
  • 68. Yedima  |  October 24, 2011 at 9:24 am

    Great post!!!!

    Reply
  • 69. vipul  |  January 28, 2012 at 1:22 am

    thanx bro

    Reply
  • 70. E  |  March 7, 2012 at 7:57 pm

    Thank U Very Much!

    Reply
  • 71. Narendra  |  March 27, 2012 at 11:08 pm

    Thank you so much

    Reply
  • 72. mukesh  |  August 15, 2012 at 9:38 pm

    thanks for help

    Reply
  • 73. LysandraWashington  |  October 29, 2012 at 11:09 pm

    The individual who made the decision mru details should be in the personal computer should be spanked.
    Guess I could use VS to create an app to sustain the list:) so I can eliminate that venture from it as soon as I’m done.

    Reply
    • 74. HillaryWarom  |  November 20, 2012 at 1:20 am

      Thanks a lot!!!!

      Reply
      • 75. Lane Plummer  |  February 13, 2013 at 2:37 pm

        This worked for me. Thanks!

  • 76. mukesh upadhyay  |  February 17, 2013 at 1:36 am

    thanks for giving the note of ASP.net plz give me other notes about ASP.net continue

    Reply
  • 77. dalibor  |  February 10, 2014 at 2:03 am

    Thanks a lot! Works great with VS 2008.

    Reply
  • 78. disk drive recovery  |  March 20, 2014 at 11:34 am

    Hi there i am kavin, its my first occasion to commenting anywhere, when i read this paragraph i thought i could also create comment due to
    this good article.

    Reply
  • 79. Russ  |  May 23, 2014 at 8:40 am

    When I use Visual Studio 2012, the Start Page includes a “Recent” list, showing projects I have recently accessed or edited. I noticed that a coworker has never had that on his display. (He just sees “Recent” in white letters, with no list below, where mine shows my list of recent projects.)
    Is there a way to access program settings for Visual Studio 2012 and activate his “Recent” list?

    Reply

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