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If you are using Excel 97 or Excel 2000, the File & E-Mail Assistant will update the recently opened file list for any file that you open from the Windows Explorer. Without the File & E-Mail Assistant, Excel only adds files to the recently opened list if you open them via File, Open. When you select File, File & E-Mail Assistant or click on the quick access button, the following dialog appears:

To use the E-Mail assistance features:

If you have many files to e-mail, then you can copy just the path of a file to the clipboard and paste into your e-mail program's file attachment dialog. To do this, select a single file and click the second option button which indicates that you wish to copy just the file's path. Then when you press enter, the file's folder is displayed, making it easy to select files from that folder.

To use the File assistance features:

If you select just a single file, then you can either open it or go to its directory by clicking the Go To button. If the check box for using the Windows Explorer is clicked, then the Windows Explorer is opened to the selected file's directory. If it is not checked, then Excel's File Open dialog is displayed, with the current directory being the selected file's directory.

You can sort the list of files by clicking on the any of the three sort by buttons.  You can sort by last opened, by folder A to Z order or by folder by last opened order.

The Filter button allows you to display just the files containing specific text.  This allows you to reduce the visible files if you are searching for a particular file.  The Remove button allows you to remove files from the list that you no longer wish to be on the list.  The files are not deleted or erased.  If you open the files again, they are added back to the list.