How to See Recently Opened Programs Windows and Mac

You have been working on your computer and suddenly the power turns off.

You may not lose the information you have compiled so far because they are saved on your PC. But, how do you find out the sites where you were accessing the information from?

Are they lost for good?

Will you have to spend hours after hours again to access those sites?

Or, is there any way you can see the recently opened programs?

Of course, there are.

You can see the recently opened programs on Windows and Mac and get peace of mind because now you know what sites you’ve been working on.

So, when the power returns, you can simply resume your work where you’ve left off.

Let’s find the ways here.

How Do You Find Recently Opened Programs On Windows?

  1. Head to the Start option and select the Settings option from the list.
  2. There will be a long list of options in front of you. Click the Personalization option from the list.
  3. Click the Start option on the left-side column.
  4. Once you access the Start Bar settings, enable the ‘show recent programs’ tab, and be done with it.

How Do You Find Recently Opened Programs On Mac?

  1. Your Dock should show you the recently opened programs on Mac but if it doesn’t, navigate to the Apple Menu, and choose Dock & Menu Bar.
  2. Now head to the list of options in front of you and select the ‘show recent applications in Dock’ option from the list.
  3. You may also reopen any program you want if you click Recent Items from the Apple Menu.
  4. If not, you can reconnect to the server connection and repeat the same process again.

How Do You See Recently Opened Documents?

  1. You should start by opening the Run Command. So, just press Windows+R.
  2. Now, type ‘recent’ in the Run box and press Enter. You’ll have the list of recently visited files on your Windows right in front of you.
  3. Now, you must see recently-opened files from other users on the same computer.
  4. Just click the File Explorer option and replace the current user’s name with a different one, and you’ll be able to see the recently opened documents.

How Do You Open Recently Opened Documents?

  1. You must click the File menu from the top of the MS Word option.
  2. Select the ‘Recent’ tab from the side column.
  3. You will come across a list of Recent Documents there. Select the ‘recently closed document’ option from that list.
  4. Choose File and select Options.
  5. Now, choose the Advanced tab and keep scrolling down until you hit the Display option.

Can A Third-Party Software Help In This Case?


There’s a third-party software called ‘OpenSaveFilesView’ that can display detailed information about the file that was recently opened on your Windows.

If you install this software, you’ll get to know all about the last files that were opened on your PC. From its name to extension, from open time to order, from attributes to file size—this software can help you with your objective right away.

However, the only drawback is it is not available for all Windows versions. So, you can’t access it if you have Windows 10 and 11 because this is only available for Windows 7 operating system.

If you still have that OS, you don’t need to know any other tweaks. Just install the software and see what documents were last opened on your computer/laptop.

You could also install snooping software such as ‘Prey’ that lets you monitor your Mac usage from other devices connected to the web. It allows you to take screenshots of your Macbook’s activities so that you get to know if unauthorized usage is still going on.

The inbuilt webcam can help you take the screenshots easily, which will be further helpful in preventing unauthorized usage.

Sometimes, the system mechanic software solutions can also help in this case because if you access the recently-opened programs, they might stay open in the background and consume CPU resources. A third-party software solution like IOLO can be useful in shutting down these programs.

For Deeper Information, See Recent Item

The recent item is unique. It is the collection of all your activity on your desktop. You can see all your files, folders and application, and tools you have opened recently. It also collects all your recent downloads and operating functions.

To access the recent item, follow the steps below.

Step 1: Launch File Explorer. There you go to %App Data% > Microsoft > Windows > Recent. This will take you to the recent folder, where all the recent activities are saved.

Step 2: Right-click the blank area and select sort by > Date Modified. This will sort every data in the folder by date. You can now see which data and activity you were indulging in recently.

You might find these two steps quite complex because you have to click a lot to get to the folder and then click again to optimize it for the date. If this feels too taxing, you can simply create a shortcut of recent items to access it faster.

Putting It All Together

Accessing recently opened programs on Windows and Mac follow a different process. We have talked about the steps to follow to access recently opened programs and applications.

Now we have talked about the best ways to access the recently-opened documents on Windows and Mac. So, no matter which operating system your computer has, you must follow the simple tips to access them.

If anyone uses your computer without your permission, and you want to check which documents they were accessing, we have provided you with the best solutions right here.

For further information, let us know in the comment box below.

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