Display a list of recently opened or saved files in Windows

Martin Brinkmann
Oct 2, 2014
Updated • Feb 9, 2015

It is easy to lose sight of a file that you have saved to your computer system. While most programs use default locations to save files, it can happen that files get saved to another location.

The Firefox web browser for example sets download directories based on the server files get downloaded from. This means that you may end up saving files into different directories on the system.

You may save files to different directories on purpose. If you are using a word processing program, you may save financial documents into a different folder than other documents for example.

Nirsoft's new OpenSaveFilesview program is a tiny portable application for the Windows operating system that you can use for a variety of tasks including as a reminder that helps you locate saved or opened files again.

The program displays the most recent items in its interface on start and you may notice that it takes a couple of seconds before results are displayed.

Here you find each file listed with its name and extension, and where applicable its open and file modification time.

You may notice that files listed here are limited to open and save dialogs. What this means is that you won't find programs or files listed here that you ran manually on the system for example, only those that were saved or loaded using save or load dialogs.

Nirsoft's program pulls the information from the following two Windows Registry locations:

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\ComDlg32\OpenSaveMRU
  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\ComDlg32\OpenSavePidlMRU

The program ships with the usual traits. You can sort the data with a click on a table header, for instance by data or file extension. There is also an option to save the selected data as a txt, xml, csv or HTML file or display file properties in the interface.

The program lacks options to manage files directly though. You cannot open the files directly nor delete them. If you have located a file listed by the program, for instance by using the built-in search, you will have to open Windows Explorer or another file manager to open it as you cannot do so directly from within OpenSaveFilesView.

That's a severe limitation and implementing this feature could improve the application significantly. For now, it can be used to locate files you saved or opened previously only.

software image
Author Rating
1.5 based on 3 votes
Software Name
Operating System
Landing Page

Tutorials & Tips

Previous Post: «
Next Post: «


  1. X said on October 2, 2014 at 6:06 pm

    FYI, CCleaner clears the two registry keys mentioned above.

    1. Robert Palmar said on October 3, 2014 at 5:31 am

      Not sure if that’s the case on my system.
      Is that the “Other Explorer MRU” checkbox?

  2. Bob said on October 2, 2014 at 3:41 pm

    I use the free program everything and love it

  3. insanelyapple said on October 2, 2014 at 1:49 pm

    LastActivityView from NirSoft is also interesting – it provides access to list of places, files and applications we interact with in chronoligical order. And both to be honest are quite scary – even if you do regular system clean up with system tools or CCleaner for example, some places are still keeping data that theoretically could compromise user.
    Wondering if this has to do something from US govt agencies requests and http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Computer_Online_Forensic_Evidence_Extractor usage.

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on October 2, 2014 at 2:12 pm

      Unless you happen to clear these information regularly, at least once per session, you will end up with data that others can use to find out what you have been doing on your computer.

Leave a Reply

Check the box to consent to your data being stored in line with the guidelines set out in our privacy policy

We love comments and welcome thoughtful and civilized discussion. Rudeness and personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please stay on-topic.
Please note that your comment may not appear immediately after you post it.