For one reason or another, you often find yourself lending your smartphone to other people. And these, inevitably, end up poking your nose into Messenger seeing all the conversations, calls and searches you’ve recently made within the app! This thing just does not go down well but, at the same time, you do not want to seem “obnoxious” in the eyes of your friends by denying them the use of your smartphone.
How then? You should find a way to clear Messenger history so that no chats or private searches are shown on the app home screen, but you just don’t know where to put your hands. Well, if you want, I’m here to give you a hand! If you give me five minutes of your free time, I can tell you how to clear the history on Messenger in order to delete or hide the chats, calls and searches that you want to keep private from the main screen of the service.
The steps to be taken are very simple and can be performed both from mobile (therefore from smartphone and tablet) and from computer. At this point, I would say that there is nothing left for me to do, except to invite you to carefully consult the instructions below and put them into practice. I wish you a good read and I wish you a big good luck for everything: you will see, protecting your privacy on Messenger will be easier than expected!
How to clear Messenger message history
Let’s start this tutorial on how to delete Messenger history from chats, that is, from messages exchanged with other users of the service.
Given that there is no way, at least for the moment, to delete or hide all Messenger chats at the same time, you have to choose how to act: you can delete a chat , so as to make it disappear permanently from your devices (but not from those of the other participants in the conversation), or you can archive it , so that you can access it if necessary without showing it on the main screen of the service. Here everything is explained in detail.
Smartphone e tablet
If you want to hide a chat from the main screen of the app, without deleting it from your account, start Messenger , log in to your profile (if necessary) and locate the conversation of your interest in the Chat tab of the application (the one with the cartoon icon).
At this point, swipe from right to left on the chat title you want to hide, press the trash can icon that appears on the side, answer Hide chat to the warning that appears on the screen and that’s it.
Next, to retrieve the hidden conversation, you will need to go back to the Messenger Chats tab and search for the chat name (hence the name of the person you had the conversation with) in the Search field . To return the conversation to the main Messenger screen, however, you will have to send or receive a new message within the same.
If you want to avoid that, at least temporarily, the arrival of a new message can make a chat reappear on the main Messenger screen, block the reception of messages from your interlocutor. To do this, open the chat to keep archived, tap on the name of your interlocutor (at the top of the screen), go to Block and activate the lever for the Block messages option .
Subsequently, you can retrace your steps simply by deactivating the lever relating to the Block messages option (which, at that point, will be in the Unblock menu and no longer in the “Block” one).
If, on the other hand, you want to permanently delete a conversation from Messenger, locate it in the Chat tab (the one with the cartoon icon), swipe its title from right to left , press the trash can icon that appears on the side and answer Delete the chat on the warning that appears on the screen. The chat, as already mentioned above, will be deleted from your account but not from those of the other participants in the conversation.
To delete a single message, on the other hand, make a long tap on it, select the Remove item from the menu that appears at the bottom and confirm by pressing the appropriate button that appears at the bottom.
If, before deleting a chat, you want to create a backup of its content (knowing however that this cannot be restored in Messenger), go to the Chat section of Messenger and first tap on your profile photo (top left) and then on the Account Settings> Download your information items .
On the page that opens, check the box for Messages , click on the Create file button and wait for the backup file to be generated in order to download it. It could even take hours or days. To find out more, read my tutorial on how to save chats, in which I got to talk to you in more depth on the subject.
Did you activate the secret chats function on Messenger and want to know how to delete this kind of conversation? Nothing could be easier: go to the Chat section of Messenger, tap on your profile photo (top left), select the items Secret conversations> Delete secret conversations and confirm by pressing the Delete button that appears on the screen.
If you have a very dated (or in any case poorly performing) Android device and, for this reason, you have downloaded Messenger Lite (the “light” version of Messenger) instead of the classic Messenger app, you must follow a slightly different procedure to delete the history chat.
After starting the app and logging into your account (if necessary), go to the Chat tab (the one with the cartoon icon), make a long tap on the title of the conversation you are interested in, choose the Archive item conversation or Delete conversation from the menu that opens (according to your needs) and confirm by pressing the OK button that appears on the screen.
To retrieve the conversations archived in Messenger Lite, select the Contacts tab (the one with the two men icon), search for the name of the conversation to retrieve (therefore the name of the interlocutor involved in it) in the search field located at the top, hit Enter and hit on the relevant result. To delete a single message, instead, make a long tap on it and select the Delete item from the menu that opens.
If you want to prevent an archived chat from returning to the main Messenger screen, following the arrival of new messages, you can temporarily block your interlocutor by opening the Chat , pressing the ⋮ button located at the top right and selecting the Block item from the menu that opens. Subsequently, you can retrace your steps by performing the same procedure, but by pressing on the Unblock item instead of on the “Block” one.
If, before deleting a conversation permanently, you want to download a backup copy, go to the Messenger Lite Settings tab (the one with the gear icon), select the Account Settings> Download your information and then follow the instructions I gave you in the tutorial chapter dedicated to the standard version of Messenger (the steps to take are the same).
Do you prefer to act as a computer ? In this case, you can rely on both the Messenger application for Windows 10 and the Web version of the service , accessible from any browser for Internet browsing: now I’ll explain how to proceed.
After launching the Messenger app for Windows 10 or logging into Messenger.com with your Facebook account data, locate the conversation you want to hide or delete and do the following.
- If you use the Messenger app for Windows 10 , right-click on the chat title (in the left sidebar) and select the More> Archive items from the menu that opens, if you want to archive the discussion, or the Delete conversation item , if you want to delete it. Then confirm. To delete a single message , instead, right-click on it and select the Delete item from the menu that appears below.
- If you use the Web version of Messenger , hover the mouse cursor over the title of the chat of your interest (in the left sidebar), click on the gear icon that appears in its correspondence and select Archive or Delete from the menu that opens, based on the operation you want to perform. Then confirm. To delete a single message , on the other hand, hover over it with the mouse cursor, click on the button… which appears in its correspondence and select the item Remove from the menu that appears.
As already pointed out above, the cancellation of the chats will only take effect for you and not for the other interlocutors involved in the various discussions.
As for the archived chats, however, if you want to retrieve one, all you have to do is search for its name (therefore the name of your interlocutor in the conversation) in the Messenger search bar , at the top left. Alternatively, if you are using the Web version of Messenger, you can click on the gear icon located at the top left and select the item Archived conversations , to view all the conversations you have archived.
Archived conversations automatically return to the main Messenger page if a new message is sent to them. To prevent this from happening, you can temporarily block your interlocutors by doing this.
- If you use the Messenger app for Windows 10 , open the chat, click on the name of your interlocutor at the top of the window, go to Block and activate the toggle Block messages . Later, you can retrace your steps by moving the previously activated lever to OFF .
- If you use the Web version of Messenger , open the chat, click on the gear icon located in correspondence with the name of your interlocutor (in the right sidebar) and select the item Block messages from the menu that opens. Later, you can retrace your steps by following the same procedure and selecting the item Unblock messages (instead of “Block messages”) from the Messenger menu.
If, before deleting a chat from Messenger, you want to download a backup copy of it, you can use the data download function offered by Facebook.
To use it, connected to this page of the social network , click on the item Download your information and then follow the instructions on the screen. I told you more about this feature in several of my tutorials, such as the one on how to unsubscribe from Facebook.
How to clear Messenger call history
Would you like to know how to clear call history on Messenger ? Calls on Messenger are treated like normal chats, so if you want to archive or delete them, all you have to do is follow the instructions I gave you in the previous chapter of the tutorial , regarding Messenger chats.
Also in this case, the operation can be completed both from smartphones and tablets (via the official app) and from a PC (acting as Messenger for Windows 10 or Messenger.com).
How to clear Messenger search history
Don’t want the names of the people you recently searched for on the platform to appear on the main Messenger screen? No problem: below you will find out how to prevent this from happening.
Smartphone e tablet
To use it, select the Chat tab of the application (the cartoon icon), tap on the search field located at the top and press the Edit item in the Recent searches section (where you can find the names of the people you searched for lately).
In the next screen, press on the (x) relating to the various names to be deleted or, if you want to delete all the history, press on the Delete all item located at the top right (and then confirm).
Note: Messenger Lite doesn’t include a search history, so if you’re using this version of the app you don’t have to worry about a thing.
If you use the Messenger application for Windows 10 , you should know that the latter does not provide a specific function to delete the search history (which appears only after clicking on the search field located at the top left, in the sidebar of the program). However, you can still achieve this by logging out of your account.
To perform the operation in question, click on the Messenger application settings button (bottom left), click on the Exit item and confirm. When you log back into the application, you will notice that your search history will be empty.
The web version of Messenger does not include a search history, so there is no need to do anything. The situation is different with regards to Facebook (the main social network), which keeps a history of people, pages and other elements searched within it: to find out how to get rid of this data too, consult my guide on how to delete the Facebook history.