[SOLVED] Removing Unused boards from Boards manager


I recently added cores for the ESP8266, and it gives me a gigantic list of boards that I am never going to use (I only have a nodemcu from that list). i tried editing the boards.txt, everything is still there. Deleted unused boards from the Varients folder, everything is still there… How can I remove the extra boards!? Using version 1.6.13

Any help is greatly appreciated.

Thank you.

Editing the esp8266 core's boards.txt should do it. Did you restart the Arduino IDE after editing it? You don't need to do anything with the variants.

Thank you for the reply.

This may sound silly.. but where is the core installed? I can't find it for the life of me! The only thing I can find is a boards.txt file in the ESP8266-master (library). Removing all the other entries in that particular file did not take anything out of the IDE. Yes, I have restarted the IDE several times.

Thanks again

This is the easiest way to find it:

  • Select an ESP8266 board from the Tools > Board menu.
  • File > Examples > EEPROM > eeprom_clear
  • Sketch > Show Sketch Folder

This will open the packages/esp8266/hardware/esp8266/{version}/libraries/EEPROM/examples/eeprom_clear where {version} is the version of the esp8266 core you have installed. So you just have to move up folders until you get to packages/esp8266/hardware/esp8266/{version}, which contains boards.txt.

Those folders assume Boards Manager installation, which is the recommended installation technique. If you did a manual installation then the folder structure will be slightly different but the instructions will still be about the same.

OneSelfLost: The only thing I can find is a boards.txt file in the ESP8266-master (library). Removing all the other entries in that particular file did not take anything out of the IDE.

That folder name indicates you downloaded it from the esp8266 core GitHub repository page but it's possible the Arduino IDE isn't actually using that file and instead is using one you installed somehow in a different location. By following my instructions above you will find the location of the file actually in use.

Oh my gad, THANK YOU! 1,000,000 + Karma!!

NEVER would have found that… AppData/Local/Arduino15/packages/ESP8266…

Looks like I both installed via the Boards Manager, and separately added a Library from GitHub which had some extra files in it.

Thank you again!

I found here https://forum.arduino.cc/index.php?topic=519152.0 that the best way is not by deleting the entries but simpy adding something like this at the end of the file (i have unremarked the nodemcu 1.0 because i'm using this one ;) )

Hide the boards i dont' have

esp8285.hide=true espduino.hide=true huzzah.hide=true cw01.hide=true espresso_lite_v1.hide=true espresso_lite_v2.hide=true phoenix_v1.hide=true phoenix_v2.hide=true nodemcu.hide=true


modwifi.hide=true thing.hide=true thingdev.hide=true esp210.hide=true d1_mini.hide=true d1_mini_pro.hide=true d1_mini_lite.hide=true d1.hide=true espino.hide=true espinotee.hide=true wifinfo.hide=true arduino-esp8266.hide=true gen4iod.hide=true oak.hide=true wifiduino.hide=true wifi_slot.hide=true wiolink.hide=true

You can do the same thing with the Arduino IDE boards. In my case i've added this at the end (i have only the Nano)

Hide the boards i dont' have

yun.hide=true uno.hide=true diecimila.hide=true


mega.hide=true megaADK.hide=true leonardo.hide=true leonardoeth.hide=true micro.hide=true esplora.hide=true mini.hide=true ethernet.hide=true fio.hide=true bt.hide=true LilyPadUSB.hide=true lilypad.hide=true pro.hide=true atmegang.hide=true robotControl.hide=true robotMotor.hide=true gemma.hide=true circuitplay32u4cat.hide=true yunmini.hide=true chiwawa.hide=true one.hide=true unowifi.hide=true

Very good askariwa,

It still needs some fine tuning as it looks like your filelist doesn't correspond exactly to what my IDE version has, but it's a very nice connection to the other post solving teh problem in a pretty neat way.

BR, C.

Just wanted to add a helpful piece of information from the poster at the previously mentioned thread:

pert: One thing to note, the actual definition of the hide property makes no difference. It's merely the presence of the property that causes the board to be hidden. So even if you do this:


the Arduino/Genuino Uno board will still be hidden from the Tools > Board menu. For this reason I think it is not best practices to use uno.hide=true as this gives the illusion that uno.hide=false will cause it to be unhidden. Instead I am just using an empty definition:


It's really a shame that there are so many useful features like this that nobody knows about because Arduino didn't take the time to document them. This came up on the issue tracker and I vaguely remembered something about it but not the specific property name. So I had to spend a lot of time searching before I found this forum thread.

The Galactic Award for Extreme Cleverness goes to askariwa. Thank you this has saved me much aggravation.


I developed a simple Windows app that allows you to select what boards do you want to see in the IDE. Check it out on Github


I hope it helps you


Tested: it seems that it works only if you have installed the IDE, if you use the portable version it fails because it can't get the right folder since I don't have any Arduino folder under my user folder.

So I made a quick and dirty modification and changed this line

string[] boards = Directory.GetDirectories(Path.Combine(local, @"Arduino15\packages"));

in this line

string[] boards = Directory.GetDirectories(Path.GetDirectoryName(@"D:\IDE\arduino-1.8.10\portable\packages\"));

Don't forget the last \ in the path, otherwise the search will start from portable folder and will fail.

This modification will work only in my installation but the right way is that if you get an exception in getting folder using the original line you will open a ChooseFolder window and the user will pick the right portable folder.

All right. I updated the version to select the "packages" folder when it wasn't found in its default location.


Starred on GitHub (and Karma+!)

I compiled it on VS2017. It asked to me if I wanted to convert the project to a previous SDK or just to add NET 4.7.2 SDK. I added the new SDK.

Hi again,

I have a new version, but this time is an Arduino IDE plugin developed in Java. With this plugin the process is easier because it runs directly on the IDE and reads the environment information. No need to folder selection.

If you want to try please check it out on Github:


Hope this helps better


Works better because it finds cores that are installed with board manager and cores that are installed manually that are installed in the hardware subfolder of sketchbook folder.


Starred and watched this too!

Merry Christmas, Feliz Navidad!

Thanks @mchavez! I really like the plugin approach. I've always thought it was unfortunate that the Arduino IDE's plugin system isn't more widely used in 3rd party projects. I think a lot of people aren't even aware of this functionality.

Thanks, is only a humble contribution to this great platform. And yes, I think the plugin system should be used more.

Thank you very much !! Great job

mchavez: Thanks, is only a humble contribution to this great platform. And yes, I think the plugin system should be used more.

It is a little more than that and something a lot of people have been trying to do for a while but not as well as your method.


Awesome tool.

After a long time being frustrated with all these boards I finally tried to do something about it and found it :-) Works wonders to clean up the default boards. This functionality really should be part of the stock IDE.

Any chance to make it work with other installed cores? I have five other cores installed, some of which (ATTinyCore, ESP8266 core) have lots of options...