QuickBooks maintains a list of the company files that you have opened recently – the Previous Company list. Here’s a pointer on how to remove a file from that list, including a tip about a bug in QuickBooks 2011.
This article was updated on 12/30/2011
QuickBooks will normally show you a list of previously opened company files, either in the No Company Open window, or in the File menu under Open Previous Company.
If you physically delete a company file from your computer, you will still see the name on this list. How do you remove it?
- Open a company file.
- Select File then Open Previous Company.
- At the bottom of the list select Set number of previous companies. This option can’t be selected if you don’t have a company file open.
- Set the number of companies to 1 and click OK. This clears the list of all files except the one that you have open.
- Return to the same place and set the number of companies back to 20 so that the program will keep a list of files that you open from this point on.
Note that this is stored per computer – that is, if you reset this on your computer, it won’t affect anyone else’s computer.
Except in QuickBooks 2011…
In QuickBooks 2011, at least through the R5 release (the current one at the time I’m writing this), you will find that if you reset the number of companies back to a higher number, the next time that you start QuickBooks the list will be back just as it was before. Our little trick doesn’t work permanently. What can you do?
This list is stored in the QBWUSER.INI file, which is stored in a folder that is normally hidden by Windows. You can easily edit this file to remove the list.
To do this within QuickBooks:
- Start QuickBooks.
- Press the F2 key. This will open the Product Information window.
- While in this window, press the F3 key. this will open the Tech Help window.
- Select the Open File tab.
- Click on the QBWUSER.INI file in the list to select it. DO NOT click on others, as this window lets you select multiple files.
- Click the Open File button. This will open the file in the Notepad text editor, usually.
- Look for a section labeled [MRUFILES_STANDARD_STRATUM]. The list of previously opened files follows this. Delete the file names here, then save the file. Do not change other settings unless you know what the effect would be.
If you exit QuickBooks and reenter, the files will not be displayed.
Update for QuickBooks 2012 (and later)
This information was added on 12/30/2011
If you are using QuickBooks 2012 there is a simple way to change this list. Simply click on the Edit List link in the No Company Open window.