How to Deletes Files and Folders in Windows 11

This post shows students and new users how to delete files and folders when using Windows 11. One thing is certain is that you’ll want to delete a file or folder sooner or later.

If you do not want a file or folder any more, you can delete it. To delete an item, simply identify and select the item, and delete. It’s that simple. This simply task works for files, shortcuts, folders and just about anything else in Windows 11.

When you delete an item it is moved to the Trash folder, where it is stored until you empty the trash. The trash folder is where items are kept temporarily until you empty it, so that in cases where you didn’t mean to delete a filer or folder, you can always restore to its original location.

There are multiple ways to delete files and folders in Windows. You could simply identify the file or folder, then select and press the DELETE key, or drag the item to the Trash bin, or right-click the item and select Delete on the context menu.

Remember, when you press DELETE on a folder, it deletes entire folders, including any files or folders inside that folders. So make sure you select the correct folder before deleting.

To get started with deleting files and folders in Windows 11, follow the steps below:

How to send items to the Recycle bin in Windows 11

Sending items to the Recycle is also known as deleting an item. The trash bin holds items until it’s emptied. You can always restore items to their original locations when you decide you don’t want to lose it forever by emptying the trash folder.

To delete an item, do these:

  1. Select the item you want to place in the trash by clicking it once.
  2. Press DELETE on your keyboard. Alternatively, drag the item to the Trash bin
  3. You can also click the Delete icon on the toolbar in File Explorer as highlighted below.

You could also right-click on the item you wish to delete, then select the Delete option on the context menu as highlighted below.

Yet another way to delete items in Windows 11 is to right-click, then go to Show more options.

Then select the Delete command on the context menu.

Once you delete the file, it will be moved to the Trash bin. The trash bin holds deleted items forever until you go in and empty it.

How to restore delete items from Recycle bin

If you delete an item and you decide you want it back, simply go to the Recycle bin and restore it. When you do, the item will be restored back to its original location.

In the Recycle bin, select the item you want to restore, then click on the ellipsis (three dots) on the toolbar, and click Restore the selected items.

To restore all items, click Restore all items.

Again, the trash folder will hold items forever until you empty it. To delete files permanently, and free up disk space on your computer, you need to empty the trash.

How to permanently delete items in Windows 11

If you want to permanently delete an item without having to send it to the Recycle bin first, you can use the steps below.

  1. Select the item you want to delete.
  2. Press and hold the SHIFT key, then press the DELETE key on your keyboard.
  3. Because you cannot undo this, you will be asked to confirm that you want to delete the file or folder.

To lose items in the Recycle in, simply empty it. When you use the SHIFT and DELETE key, you will not have the option to restore that item.

That should do it!


This post showed you how to delete a file or folder in Windows 11. If you find any error above, please use the comment form below to report.