How to Prevent VLC from Saving Recently Viewed Videos on Mac

The recent files list in VLC is designed to provide convenient shortcuts to the audio files you recently listened to or the videos you received viewed. But if you want to prevent VLC from adding files to to the Open Recent menu item, you can. Here's how.

The VLC media player has been my go-to music and video player for years. It’s free and open source and supports a huge range of filetypes and codecs. It also offers a lot of flexibility in customizing it. But that flexibility adds some complexity, and it’s not always easy to find where to change the setting you’re trying to change. This is one of those very simple little tweaks that you might want to do–but it’s also not quite as self-evident as it could be.

The recent files list in VLC is designed to provide convenient shortcuts to the playlists or audio files you recently listened to or to the videos you received viewed. But if you want to prevent VLC from adding files to to the Open Recent menu item, you can.

Most of the instructions I came across were for Windows or were old. But recent versions on Mac do things slightly differently, so you have to go digging a little further. It’s still entirely possible and easy to do–you just have to know where to look.

Here’s how to do it:

In VLC, open Preferences by going to VLC > Preferences in the top menu or pressing ⌘, (that’s the Command key and a Comma at same time).

Click on the Interface Icon from the top.

Click on the Show All button at bottom left.

You’ll then a much more comprehensive preferences panel. From the left panel, expand the Interface item. Then you want to do the same for the Main Interfaces subitem. And then go to the macosx item.

Scroll down to the Keep Recent Items option. By default, it’s checked. Uncheck it.

Hit Save.

And you’re done!

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