How to fix

How to turn off recent items and frequent places in Ubuntu Unity Launcher

This story starts in 2012. Ubuntu 12.04 released with new desktop environment – Unity. It had a new user activity tracking tool user activity tracking tool Zeitgeist. Also Ubuntu had the HUD – a new user interaction system.

Zeitgeist and HUD are still working in Ubuntu. They show you recent items and frequent places.

We can disable them.

How to disable the Zeitgeist in Ubuntu

It’s all in the file recently-used.xbel.

So let’s purge it and prevent writing:

echo "" > ~/.local/share/recently-used.xbel
sudo chattr +i ~/.local/share/recently-used.xbel

– now no one can write there and Zeitgeist will show you nothing.

How to disable the HUD in Ubuntu Unity

Let’s just make it not executable:

sudo chmod -x /usr/lib/indicator-appmenu/hud-service

In some distributives (64 bit) it will be in another place:

sudo chmod -x /usr/lib/x86_64-linux-gnu/hud/hud-service

And stop current HUD process:

sudo kill -9 $(pidof hud-service)

That’s all. They’re not spying on you right now.