Mac Keeps a Record of Everything You've Ever Downloaded (but You can Disable it)

Zach Zach (249)
5 minutes

Most Apple users don't know that the Mac keeps a record of every file that you've ever downloaded. Here's how to view the record, delete it, and disable the feature entirely. Note: files downloaded when using Google Chrome's Incognito Mode are not added to this list.

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Navigate to Applications > Utilities > Terminal.

Paste the below command into Terminal and press Enter.

sqlite3 ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.LaunchServices.QuarantineEventsV* 'select LSQuarantineDataURLString from LSQuarantineEvent' > ~/Downloads/downloadhistory.txt

This places a text file called downloadhistory.txt in your Downloads folder. Open it to view its contents.

Paste the below command into Terminal and press Enter.

sqlite3 ~/Library/Preferences/com.apple.LaunchServices.QuarantineEventsV* 'delete from LSQuarantineEvent'

To prevent your Mac from tracking your downloads in the future, paste the below command into Terminal and press Enter.

defaults write com.apple.LaunchServices LSQuarantine -bool NO
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