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Question: Resent Items reverts to zero

OS X version 10.11.6, iMac Late 2009 20.5-inch.

In System Preferences > General, Recent Items shows zero. I can change it to whatever, such as 50. That modifies four preference files: com.apple.systempreferences.plist, com.apple.xpc.activity2.plist, com.apple.systempreferences.plist.Bv50Mc0 (name varies and it self-deletes in a fraction of a second - I made a screen recording to get the file name – never found later by Spotlight), and By Host > com.apple.loginwindow.2CB41E66-5662-5609-9251-8F41D704E218.plist (name varies). I can delete all but the self-deleting file, but it makes no difference. System Preferences will not even reset to default, which I remember being 10 items.


Recent Items is not shown under the Apple menu at all. Apps show "Open Recent > and greyed: "Clear Menu" only.


Disk Utility for the startup volume shows "The volume appears to be OK".


Do I need to use Pacifist to replace the System Preferences app or is there yet another preference file hidden someplace?

iMac, OS X El Capitan (10.11.6)

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Answer:

com.apple.preferences.general.plist was the culprit, and as always, no restart was needed. Removing .plist files cannot ever corrupt system preferences and operating system. Every app that has options will automatically create a default .plist file for itself after the previous one is removed.

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Nov 12, 2017 9:36 PM in response to Moof666 In response to Moof666

When some documents , downloads etc

folders are opened the setting will show like this .

User uploaded file

If you click on clear menu , the data is cleared and recent folders is greyed .


User uploaded file

In your system don't delete at random plist by your own , it will corrupt system preferences and Operating system .


Open user library macOS Sierra: Library folder

Find a folder preferences drag and drop com.apple.preferences.general.plist to the desktop , restart the machine see if it helps .

Note this plist was viewed in Mac OS High Sierra 10.13.1 , in your case verify the plist exists as the extensions for plist could be slightly different as you are using Mac OSX EL - Capitan 10.11.6

Nov 12, 2017 9:36 PM

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Nov 16, 2017 10:00 AM in response to tygb In response to tygb

com.apple.preferences.general.plist was the culprit, and as always, no restart was needed. Removing .plist files cannot ever corrupt system preferences and operating system. Every app that has options will automatically create a default .plist file for itself after the previous one is removed.

Nov 16, 2017 10:00 AM

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Nov 16, 2017 10:01 AM in response to Moof666 In response to Moof666

Oops, I clicked the wrong "Solved" button, and the forum has no option to change that.

Nov 16, 2017 10:01 AM

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Question: Resent Items reverts to zero