More recent documents, please

When I moved to a new computer not long ago, I did it the hard way: rather than using the handy Migration Assistant, I copied over my files manually. I did that not to cause myself undue pain and suffering (though there certainly was some of that), but to help clean out several years worth of detritus that had accumulated in my preferences folder and elsewhere.

A result of that, though, was that I needed to reset all of my preferences. For the most complex ones I just copied the pref files over, but others I reset manually, again to clear out old prefs lingering in the files. That was fine, not too difficult.

One of the many preferences I reset was a tip I read on the Mac OS X Hints site. It controls the number of recent documents listed in the Open Recent sub-menu in many applications. I like this feature in document-based apps that use it, but I like to have more than the default 10 documents listed. I prefer 30, which fits on my screen nicely.

So, I fired up my trusty Terminal and entered:

defaults write NSGlobalDomain NSRecentDocumentsLimit 30

And that was that! This command changes the default number of recent documents for all applications to 30 - you can change the number to whatever you prefer. It will take effect when apps are next launched.

I hope this is helpful for others, too.