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I really like the Windows 7 feature of having recent/pinned items for applications directly available in the Start menu through an expander on the right side of the application item. However, for VS 2012 I do not get the expander! It works fine for all my other applications (VS 2010, Office, etc.), and it also works on other PCs. Any ideas?

Edit: By "expander", I mean the little triangular arrow pointing right that is shown to the right of the application name. When clicked, or when the mouse is hovered over the menu item, the right-hand side of the Start menu will show a list of the recent and pinned items for that application. This is the same list that is available when right-clicking an application icon in the task bar.

I'd like to post an image, but I'm not allowed to by the "spam prevention mechanism".

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Please explain the problem in more detail. I have no idea what your talking about when you use the word "expander" and I am very familar with Windows 7. – Ramhound Sep 21 '12 at 12:17
They are called jump lists:… – Hoppe Aug 15 '13 at 14:27
Drag and dropping VSLauncher.exe worked from me. Source:… – maria Nov 19 '13 at 23:36
up vote 3 down vote accepted
  • Click Start
  • All Programs
  • Microsoft Visual Studio 2012
  • Right Click on the Program "Visual Studio 2012" Pin to Start Menu

Your solution should show in the recent files list.

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Thanks! VS was already pinned, but after I un-pinned and re-pinned it, I now get the recent list. – NPVN Dec 7 '12 at 7:40

If you open a solution from the Visual Studio Recent list it won't be shown in the Jump list. If you open the .sln directly it will be shown in this list.

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Thanks, this is exactly the answer that I needed. – RobotCaleb Oct 4 '13 at 14:59

This is a taskbar feature not a VisualStudio feature. Right click on taskbar/Properties/Start Menu and make sure "Store and display recently opened items in the Start menu and the taskbar" is checked.

Right clicking on a program in the taskbar should now display recent documents.

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That checkbox is checked, and the feature is working for all other programs. Just not for VS 2012!?! I'm guessing it's some kind of registry settings that's messed up, but I have no clue where to look. – NPVN Nov 2 '12 at 7:20

Just like user NPVN above, and yours truly, there are lots of people having trouble with VS 2012 and 2013 projects not appearing in the recent list of the windows start menu, so I'll just add how I think I solved it. I tried lots of different things. This was what it looked like for me enter image description here

As you can see, LibreOffice displays its recent files, but not Visual Studio 2103. For me this problem began after opening a copy of a project, and when removing that copy I let Visual Studio remove the shortcut from the recent list, when I tried to used it. That made the recent shortcut for the original project (by the same name) disappear as well, and eventuallt after some trial and error, the whole recent list of VS in the startmenu.

Things tried to no avail: I cleared the settings "Store and display recently opened items" in the Start menu and the taskbar, and checked them again.

I unpinned VS in the start menu and pinned again, closed VS and opened new projects and closed VS. Still no arrow for recent projects.

It was not until I changed Tools/Options/General/Items shown in recently used lists inside Visual Studio, from 10 to 11, that the arrow appeared, and newly opened projects were added. enter image description here

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