Relatively new full-time Ubuntu user, but experienced computer user. I'm asking a question that's been asked before, but my specific case seems to be unique.

I installed the latest Ubuntu to my laptop in dual-boot mode with Win7. Overall I really like Ubuntu and I'm using it more often than Windows. However, I can't get the privacy settings in Unity Dashboard to work properly. I've excluded photos and videos AND blacklisted specific directories from the history, but it never seems to take.

It'll seem to work on first boot. No embarrassing photo or video files will show up in the default Dash search pane. But the moment I actually view something in the photo viewer -- and here's where it gets weird -- old photos and files I viewed two weeks ago will pop up again in Dashboard. NOT the ones I just viewed, but the same dozen or so from a previous session long ago. And, occasionally, the specific directories I blacklisted will also pop up.

Most of these files, and the blacklisted directories, are actually on the Windows side of the partition. Is that a possible source of the problem? I'm dubious, because I'm seeing similar issues from people without Windows installed at all.

This is a potentially very serious problem for me. The files I look at on my own time are nobody's business but my own, but how can I use the Dash in front of a client or a friend if I have no idea what random files it's going to decide to display today?

1 Answer 1


Blacklisting specific file formats, folders and other things in the Privacy settings only prevent it from being logged again in the future. It doesn't have any effect to the things that are already logged.

If your concern is, blacklisted photos show up in the dash, you should consider deleting the already logged history. That should ensure there are no more photos being logged as well as prevent any photos from being shown that were mistakenly logged beforehand.

You can use this link for reference on how to delete the logged activities.

  • 1
    Joker, thanks for the help, but it didn't work. I'm running Ubuntu 12.10, and I'm not clear if there's a difference between the Activity Log Manager and what's simply called Privacy in 12.10. They have the same icon, and though I was able to install Activity Log Manager, it won't run. In any case, I followed the instructions assuming Privacy was identical to Activity Log Manager and deleted virtually all my history back to the day I first installed Ubuntu, but those images (and other random files) are still showing up in Dash. What now?
    – HardySwift
    Jan 26, 2013 at 3:37

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