How to disable File Explorer Search History in Windows 11

Windows operating system from Microsoft comes with File Explorer for allowing users to browse through the files and folders on the system. The same continues with the newly announced Windows 11 operating system, although the Redmond-based tech giant has revamped the design of the File Explorer.

There’s a handy search functionality built into the File Explorer application at the top-right corner of the window, which as the name itself indicates, allows users to search through the files and folders on the computer.

Whenever the user searches anything in the File Explorer, the query is stored in the system and shows up in a drop-down suggestion when the user tries to search for something else. This can be a bit problematic if you are using a shared PC or are trying to search through personal or private data.


If you are looking for a solution to disable the search history feature for the File Explorer in Windows 11 operating system, then you are at the right place. Here is a step-by-step guide showing how you can do it.

How To Disable File Explorer Search History in Windows 11

For this, we will be using the built-in Local Group Policy Editor feature of the Windows operating system. It is a utility allowing users to configure Group Policy settings for a Windows PC or a group of PCs. It basically allows users to control the features and functionalities of the Windows-powered machine.

Step 1: Open the Local Group Policy Editor on your computer. For this, press the Windows + R keys to open the Run prompt and in there, type and enter “gpedit.msc.” This will open the Group Policy Editor tool.

Step 2: When it opens up, navigate to User Configuration from the left menu bar and then go to Administrative Templates > Windows Components > File Explorer.


Step 3: Now, from the list of options, double-click on the “Turn off the display of recent search entries in the File Explorer search box.”

Step 4: When a settings box for the policy loads, change its value from “Default” to “Enabled” and then click the “Ok” button to save changes.


That’s it. From now on, whatever you search using the File Explorer on your computer, none of the search string histories will be stored.

After making the changes, if you are missing the ease of looking for data using the previous used strings or keyboard and want to bring the feature back, then you follow the same process as above just change the option from Enabled to Default in Step 4 and the feature history will again be saved.