Activity history helps keep track of the things you do on your device, such as the apps and services you use, the files you open, and the websites you browse. Your activity history is stored locally on your device, and if you’ve signed in to your device with a work or school account and given your permission, Windows sends your activity history to Microsoft. Microsoft uses the activity history data to provide you with personalized experiences (such as ordering your activities based on duration of use) and relevant suggestions (such as anticipating what your needs might be based on your activity history).

The following Windows features use your activity history. Be sure to refer back to this page following future releases and updates to Windows to learn what additional services and features use your activity history:

  • Timeline. See a timeline of activities and be able to resume those activities from your device. For example, let’s say that you were editing a Word document on your device, but you were unable to finish before you had to leave the office for the day. If you selected the Store my activity history on this device check box on the Activity history settings page, you would see that Word activity in your timeline the following day, and for the next several days, and from there, you could resume working on it. If you signed in to the device with a work or school account and selected the Send my activity history to Microsoft check box and you were unable to finish before you had to leave the office for the day, you could resume working on it later from another device.

  • Microsoft Edge. When you use Microsoft Edge Legacy, your browsing history will be included in your activity history. Activity history will not be saved when browsing with InPrivate windows.

If you've signed in to your device with a work or school account and turned on the setting to send Microsoft your activity history, Microsoft uses your activity history data to enable cross-device experiences. So even when you switch devices, you will be able to see notifications about your activities and resume them. For example, your activity history can also be sent to Microsoft when using another Windows device. You can continue activities that you started from those other devices on your Windows device.

Microsoft will also use your activity history to improve Microsoft products and services when the setting for sending your activity history to Microsoft is turned on. We do this by applying machine-learning techniques to better understand how customers in general use our products and services. We also diagnose where customers encounter errors and then help fix them.

Your Microsoft account settings do not allow you to send your activity history to Microsoft, but your activity history will be stored on your device to help keep track of the things you do.

Regarding multiple accounts: Activity history is collected and stored locally for each local account, Microsoft account, or work or school account that you have associated with your device in Settings > Accounts > Email & accounts. When you choose to send the activity history for your work or school account to Microsoft, activities from the primary work or school account on that device are sent to Microsoft. If you have more than one device, and you have multiple accounts on one or more of those devices, you can see activity history from your second device’s primary account on the first device (as a secondary account). You can also see these accounts in Windows 10 under Settings > Privacy > Activity history and in Windows 11 under Settings > Privacy & security > Activity history, where you can filter out activities from specific accounts from showing in your timeline. Hiding an account does not delete the data on the device, nor in the cloud. See the following section for more details on managing your data.

To learn more about how Microsoft products and services use this data to personalize experiences while respecting your privacy, see the Privacy Statement.

Manage activity history settings

On your device

To stop saving activity history locally on your device

  1. Do one of the following:

    • In Windows 10, select Start , then select Settings > Privacy > Activity history.

    • In Windows 11, select Start , then select Settings > Privacy & security > Activity history.

  2. Clear the Store my activity history on this device check box.

Open Activity history settings

Notes: 

  • If you turn this setting off, you won’t be able to use any of the on-device features that rely on activity history, such as your timeline. You will still be able to see your browsing history in Microsoft Edge.

  • In previous versions of Windows, this setting was called Let Windows collect my activities from this PC.

To stop sending the activity history for your work or school account to Microsoft

  1. Do one of the following:

    • In Windows 10, select Start , then select Settings > Privacy > Activity history.

    • In Windows 11, select Start , then select Settings > Privacy & security > Activity history.

  2. Clear the Send my activity history to Microsoft check box.

Notes: 

  • In previous versions of Windows, this setting was called Let Windows sync my activities from this PC to the cloud.

  • Windows has additional privacy settings that control whether app activity and browsing history data is sent to Microsoft, such as the Diagnostic data setting.

You can clear and delete both the activity history stored on your device and the activity history that's sent to the Microsoft cloud. 

To clear your activity history

  1. Do one of the following:

    • In Windows 10, select Start , then select Settings > Privacy > Activity history.

    • In Windows 11, select Start , then select Settings > Privacy & security > Activity history.

  2. Under Clear activity history, select Clear.

If you have multiple accounts, and your work or school account is the primary account on the device, then clearing your activity history will delete any of your work and/or school activity history that is synced to the cloud.

In your timeline, you can clear individual activities, or all activities from an individual day. To do so, right-click an activity and select the option you prefer.

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