Automatically created list/view of recently opened PDFs (and maybe other file formats)?

(I'm new to Directory Opus and am still trying to wrap my head around the seemingly endless and often difficult to setup possibilities. I've searched for this topic before but couldn't find anything, I hope it's ok to ask about it here.)

I would like a view that lists all PDFs I ever opened in order of when they were last opened. So this view would need a column for "date/time last opened". (It would be even better if this view also listed every pdf existing on my computer, even those that weren't opened yet.) I want the views to also show thumbnails of the pdfs, be able to navigate to the actual location of a file with some kind of right click "open file location" and be able to directly delete files from the view.

Having this for the PDF file format would be most useful to me, but it would also be great to have this kind of view for different file formats, like docx, xlsx and such. For some file formats it might be useful to combine different file formats in one view, like docx and odt.

Is this something that is possible to configure in Directory Opus?

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You might be able to go to the /recent folder/alias and filter on *.pdf, but whether a file is there or not will depend on how the software opening it works.

Windows doesn't (reliably*) track the last time a file was opened, so what you're aiming for probably isn't possible in general.

(* Files have an Accessed timestamp, but it's essentially useless and a leftover from older OS.)

Thanks for your reply. Can I configure your suggestion as some kind of view (that shows /recent and is already filtered to pdf) that can be opened from the folder tree, (eg. under Favorites)?

In general, isn't this a feature that has been considered to be added in Directory Opus yet? I imagine it would be useful for many users. I think there are some tools that work with the Windows recent files view, like NirSoft RecentFilesView... So I thought it would be possible to access the recent files logged by Windows and therefore it would be possible to save a timestamp everytime the Windows recent files log changes...?

A toolbar button or hotkey which goes to the folder and applies the filter would be easy enough to set up.

Having it in the folder tree is possible but only if you configure that folder to always be filtered in that way, which you may not want (unless PDF files are the only thing you ever want to see in Recent without clicking to clear the filter).

Have you checked that the Recent list contains the things you need? Not all programs add files to it when you open them.

Yes, the PDFs are listed in recent and even show thumbnails. (I'm using Sumatra PDF.)

I tried to set up the button but didn't find an option for filtering or changing the view in button configuration yet. :frowning:

If you want it on a button, it would be like this:

Go /recent

You might also want to turn on Preferences / File Displays / FAYT and Filter Bar Options / Clear Quick filter automatically when changing folders so the *.pdf filter doesn't persist when you go to a different folder in the same tab.

Like this? It goes to recent, but doesn't filter. :thinking:

Change the *.pdf to *.pdf.lnk

I forgot the Recent folder is full of shortcuts with hidden .lnk extensions, not the actual files.

No, it doesn't work. If I try to open the quickfilter field by pressing * in recent, it doesn't open. If I open and define a quickfilter in another folder, then navigate to recent, the defined filter is greyed out and it displays "Filtering is not available in this folder."

So is not being able to use Quickfilter in the RecentFiles folder a restriction caused by Windows or by Directory Opus?
If I would find a way to monitor the recent files folder and copy the content to another folder (as well as monitoring additional folders that contain files not showing up in RecentFiles), then I could use that other folder to get what I want in Directory Opus, right?

Is it possible to have it like this in the folder tree?


  • Recent files [Show Recent files unfiltered and "clears the filters"]
  • PDF files [filtered for this file format]
  • Documents [filtered for these file formats]
  • Spreadsheets [filtered for these file formats]

Select Preferences / Folders / Virtual Folders / Treat all virtual folders as real and it should let you filter in the Recent folder.

(Or select the option below that and add the Recent folder to the list.)

Thanks, the button works now.