Sunday, 2 December 2012

How to clear recent documents in Fedora 15 or 16?

Fedora Operating System
Fedora Operating System

Linux/Unix is great. It gives us freedom to enjoy all that is free. Yes, but with such freedom there can be headaches and complexities. Like, for instance, simple task such as clearing your recent documents or websites that you visited can be a taunting task on Fedora. However, it is not. I will show you how in this post, "How to clear recent documents in Fedora 15 or 16?"

First, if you are like me who sometimes tend to visit websites or watched "Girls Gone Wild" videos not approved by your wife on your computer, then obviously you wouldn't want anyone to find out especially your nosy wife (LOL).

Girls gone Wild
Girls gone Wild
Because Fedora saves all that you viewed and websites you visited for quick access incase you want to view them again, it would be very easy for others as well to locate these "Recent Items or files." To clear them out, follow the instructions below.

To clear recently visited websites:
Like most of us, if you are using FireFox for surfing the net, then it already has options to prevent it from storing websites you visited in its cache.
  1. Open FireFox program
  2. Go to the menu Edit->Preferences->Privacy Tab
  3. On that tab page, you will see History with pull down option. Click on it and select "Never remember history."
  4. Then, you will also see a link, "Clear all current history." Click on it and a small window will open.
  5. At the very top of that window, you will see a "Time Range to clear:" pull down option. Select "Everything" and click "Clear Now" button in the bottom. Once it completes, it will close and take you back to the previous window, "Privacy tab."
  6. On the Privacy tab, you will also see "Location bar (When using location bar, suggest):" with pull down options. Set it to "Nothing."
  7. Now, Firefox also comes with one more options that you may like. FireFox has "Start Private Browsing" option under Tools menu. Once you set it, nothing will be saved in its cache.
  8. Now you are done.
Now, no matter what you do on your firefox browser, nothing will be saved or shown on the location bar or anywhere revealing your past surfing history.

To clear your recent files, documents or items:
You can do this one of two ways - manually or automatically.

  1. Open your terminal program and execute the following command as you see it below.
    1.  rm ~/.local/share/recently-used.xbel
  2. Once again on your terminal program, execute the following command as you see it below.
    1.   mkdir ~/.local/share/recently-used.xbel
  3.  Then, you are done.

To be able to do the same automatically at certain time interval, you are going to need a program. In this case, the program I use to run tasks on Fedora is called Genome-Schedule. Genome-Schedule lets you execute commands and/or run programs at selected time interval, which can come in handy for situation like this.


First, you need to install Genome-Schedule if you don't have it already. To install, run the following command on your terminal - sudo yum install gnome-schedule.

After it installs, you need to create a script using the above mentioned commands. 
  1. Open gedit and enter these commands one per line.
    1. rm ~/.local/share/recently-used.xbel
    2. mkdir ~/.local/share/recently-used.xbel
  2. Give it whatever name you want and save it as a script file by adding .sh as its extension. sh extension means that it is a script file.
  3. Then, open your Genome-Schedule and create a new task to run by clicking on the new button.
  4. A window will popup asking you to provide information on your task. Enter them as follows.
    1. Task Name: Whatever you want
    3. Next, select Basic for Time and Date to run. Then from the pull down options, select "Every hours."
    4. Then, click on add button in the bottom of that window and you are done.
  5. Close the main Genome-Schedule window. From now on, your script will be run once an hour cleaning your recent files or documents on your computer
That's it. Now, you can rest assured that no one is going to snoop around 
and find out what naughty things you've been doing on your Fedora system or computer. Enjoy browsing or viewing in comfort. :)

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