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How to Empty the Recycle Bin in Windows Vista

By Nancy C. Muir

You can empty your entire Recycle Bin on your Windows Vista desktop at any time. Deleting items forever from your Recycle Bin frees up hard drive space, and Windows Vista helps you out by deleting older items from your Recycle Bin automatically when your hard drive is low on space. You can trust this though: Emptying your Recycle Bin is much easier than hauling your real trash to the curb.

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1Right-click the Recycle Bin icon.

You can find the Recycle Bin icon on the Windows Vista desktop.

2Choose Empty Recycle Bin.

This option is on the menu that appears when you right-click the Recycle Bin icon.

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3Click yes in the confirmation dialog box that appears.

A progress dialog box appears, indicating the contents are being deleted. Remember that after you empty the Recycle Bin, all files in it are unavailable to you.