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version 2.1.1 (4.82 KB) by Adam Danz
A solution to the problem of Matlab consuming an enormous amount of time to recover from an "Undefined function or variable" error.


Updated 22 Nov 2019

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The "current folder history" stores paths to directories that were once current (it differs from the search path). When paths from networks end up on the current folder history and the network becomes unavailable, an undefined variable or function (often caused by a typo) may cause an unbearable delay in the error message to appear [1,2,3]. To alleviate this problem, this function produces a GUI that will list all paths on the current folder history and you can select which paths to remove from the history. The GUI will create a backup of your original history in case you want to restore it.

This has been developed in Matlab r2017b and does not work with previous releases but the problem did not occur prior to then anyway. This works with PC (I'd love for a collaborator to adapt this to Mac and become a co-author).

For discussion on this topic, see the link in reference #2.


Cite As

Adam Danz (2020). removeDrivesFromHistory (, MATLAB Central File Exchange. Retrieved .

Comments and Ratings (12)

Bryan Ruane

Thank you so much, I was losing so much time to this issue!

Darjn Esposito

Thank you!!!!!!

David Meijer

Emilia Lalander

Solved my problem!!

David Pate

Mark Kemp

Kevin Miller


Thanks! Your code tremendously reduced the amount of delay! I also use Mac, and it does not have this problem at all.

Michael Liedlgruber

Simon Musall


Chang hsiung



Fixed typo in the "Your current directory is..." message box.


Now shows current directory (cd) at bottom of GUI. If a path is removed from the current folder history that matches the cd the user is notified that the cd will change to the first path listed on the search path.


Instead of selecting entire drives to remove from the current folder history, the user can now select individual paths. The help section, internal comments, and dialog boxes were edited to be more precise.


Message dialogs are now 12 pt font; Greeting message added when program is first run.


Fixed the name of a message window from 'mfilename' to mfilename (without quotes).

MATLAB Release Compatibility
Created with R2017b
Compatible with R2017b to any release
Platform Compatibility
Windows macOS Linux