How to View Recently Viewed Pictures on Your Computer

By Louise Balle

If you are a parent who is concerned about your child's computer habits or a web designer who needs to reference items from your photo stock quickly, it may be useful to know how to access recently viewed pictures. There is a quick and easy way to do so without the need for expensive tracking software.

Step 1

Go to the "Start" menu and then click "Run"; type "explorer" (without the quotation marks) into the box, then "OK" to open Windows Explorer.

Step 2

Click "Search" on the top menu bar of Windows Explorer.

Step 3

Click "Pictures, music, or video" in the side panel, then check the box for "Pictures and Photos." Hit "Search" and allow Explorer to find all pictures files on your computer.

Step 4

Click the "Sort results by category" or similar option on the side panel. Choose "Date Modified." All of the pictures will sort from first viewed to last (most recently) viewed. Scroll to the very bottom of the window to see the most recently viewed pictures.

Step 5

Right-click the latest picture and click "Properties" or similar to view the last date that it was accessed. Do the same for any other pictures you want to get information about.

Step 6

Check your recycle bin. Often, recently viewed pictures that were discarded will still be here (unless the trash was emptied) but not show up on your search.

Tips & Warnings

  • Check the "My Pictures" folder (usually located inside of the "My Documents" folder) frequently for recently viewed images.
  • Your Internet file download location is another place where you'll find recently downloaded and viewed images. Open up your Internet browser and go to "Tools," then "Options" or "Preferences" on the menu. Go to the "Downloads" or similar section on the dialog box and look for "Save files to" or the similar option to find the download location on your computer. Copy and paste that folder location into Windows Explorer to look through the recently downloaded files.
  • The cache for your Internet browser is also an ideal place to check often for recently viewed image files. You don't need to open the folder in Windows Explorer---you can simply sort the recent files within the browser. For instance, if you have Firefox, type "about:cache" (without the quotation marks) into your browser to view all of your recently viewed Internet pictures.
  • This method applies to Windows operating systems.