how to clear recents from a Dock tile


One handy feature of Dock tiles is they work with Expose to let you easily see recent documents. For example, even without launching Scrivener, I can hover over its Dock tile, swipe down with four fingers on the trackpad and get a look at my recent Scrivs, as shown above.

The only problem is, sometimes Dock tiles get in a mess. Take a look at my Script Editor recents list:


Hmm, not a very helpful list. And yet, there isn’t an easy way to clear it either. You might think that using the ‘Clear menu’ option in the menu bar might do the trick, but on it’s own, it won’t. It’ll clear the list in the menu bar, but not in the Dock tile.

The trick is to kill the Dock process after using the menu command. So

1. Launch the app in question
2. Choose File > Open Recent > Clear menu
3. Quit the app.
4. Now launch the, and on the command line execute killall Dock

And with that, you should have a nice clean Dock tile for that app:


Hope that helps! 🙂


About philastokes

Independent Software Developer, Technical Writer and Researcher at SentinelOne. Explaining the unexplainable with images, video and text. Scripting anything imaginable in AppleScript, Bash, Python and Swift.

Posted on September 10, 2016, in Dock and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. Comments Off on how to clear recents from a Dock tile.

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