Fixes

Windows 10 deleted items are not in Recycle Bin

Stellar Data Recovery

Don’t know what to do when deleted items are not in Recycle Bin? This tool will help you recover them all!

2. Don’t press the Shift key when deleting files

Shift key

One way you can bypass the Recycle Bin is to press and hold the Shift key when deleting a file. Holding the Shift key will erase the file without it going in the recycling bin first.

As such, make sure you’re not pressing the Shift key when deleting a file.


You can’t actually use the Shift key at all? Count on us to solve the problem in no time. 


3. Don’t delete files on flash drives

files on flash drives

Note that USB flash drives don’t include $Recycle.bin folders. You can delete files to the Recycle Bin from alternative HDD partitions, but not directly from a USB drive.

So if you’re deleting files from USB storage, that’s probably why you can’t find them in the Recycle Bin. Move the USB stick’s files onto a hard drive folder before deleting them.

4. Don’t delete files with the Command Prompt

files Command Prompt

Also, note that the Command Prompt doesn’t utilize the Recycle Bin. As such, all files deleted via the Prompt bypass the recycling bin.

So, don’t erase files with the Prompt if you might need to retain them in the Recycle Bin.

5. Deselect the Don’t move files to Recycle Bin option

  1. If no deleted items appear in the Recycle Bin, you probably need to deselect the Don’t Move Files to Recycle Bin option. To do that, right-click the Recycle Bin icon on the desktop and select Properties.
  2. Then deselect the Don’t Move Files to Recycle Bin setting on the window below.
  3. Click the Apply button to confirm the new setting.
  4. Press the OK button to close the window.

6. Increase the maximum size limit for Recycle Bin files

maximum size limit

The Recycle Bin Properties window also includes a Custom size option.

That option enables you to adjust the maximum size of files that you can delete to the Recycle Bin. If you delete a file that eclipses that maximum figure, it will not go in the bin.

As such, entering a higher number in the Maximum size text box will also ensure that more files go to the Recycle Bin.

7. Reset the Recycle Bin

  1. Open the Win + X menu with the Windows + X hotkey.
  2. Select Command Prompt (Admin) on the Win + X menu.
  3. Enter the following command in the Prompt window, and press the Return key: rd /s /q C:$Recycle.bin
  4. Then close the Command Prompt, and restart Windows 10.

A Recycle Bin that doesn’t include deleted items might be corrupted. You can reset a Recycle Bin that isn’t working with the help of the above steps.


If you’re having trouble accessing Command Prompt as an admin, then you better take a closer look at this guide.


So that’s how you can ensure the Recycle Bin includes deleted files. However, remember that you don’t always need the Recycle Bin to restore deleted files.

As for the actual procedure, do keep in mind that it’s easier and less time-consuming to go for Stellar Data Recovery from the very start.

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in June 2018 and has been since revamped and updated in October 2020 for freshness, accuracy, and comprehensiveness.


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