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For Seniors: How to Delete a Computer File or Folder

If you decide that you no longer need a file or folder, you can clear up clutter on your computer by deleting it. Remember, though, that when you delete a file or folder in Windows, it’s not really gone. It’s removed to the Recycle Bin.

Windows periodically purges older files from the Recycle Bin, but if you change your mind about a file or folder you deleted, you may still be able to retrieve them. To try to restore a deleted file or folder, double-click the Recycle Bin icon on the desktop. Right-click the file or folder and choose Restore. Windows restores the file to wherever it was when you deleted it.

To delete a computer file or folder:

  1. Locate the file or folder by using Windows Explorer.

    To do so, right-click Start and choose Open Windows Explorer and then browse to locate the file you want to delete.

  2. In Windows Explorer, right-click the file or folder that you want to delete and then choose Delete.


    The Delete File dialog box appears.

  3. Click Yes to delete the file.

    Instead of right-clicking and choosing Delete from the menu that appears earlier, you can press the Delete key on your keyboard.

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