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How to use the recycle bin in Windows 10, 7 and 8 like a pro? Step by step guide

We usually give little importance to what happens to our documents after pressing the key "Delete". For many, what happens to them is a mystery. To know in depth What is it and how it worksWe invite you to continue reading this post.

The recycle bin is a tool used by operating systems. Which serves to store files that will be deleted later and permanently. It was introduced by Windows in its 95 version. Although previously there were commands that allowed the recovery of deleted files.

Even knowing these details, we must clarify some questions. Since it is common don't use the full potential of this tool or not configure it according to our needs.

Recycle Bin Are all items in it really removed?

As we anticipate, the trash is a temporary file space. This means that all the elements that we place inside will be housed in it. The difference with other files or libraries in the system is that these can be automatically removed.

With this in mind, all documents entering there will take up space on your computer's hard drive. For this reason it is necessary to know how to use this tool. Since, if necessary, it can slow down the operation of the PC.

Learn how to use the Windows Trash like a professional step by step

In this post we will tell you how to get the most out of this tool. But before, it is important to mention that we will use the version corresponding to Windows 10.

For explanatory purposes, it works similarly to previous versions:

Open and browse the trash

Although we have mentioned that the trash has functions like deleting its content automatically, it shares many others with an ordinary Windows library. Many of the functions that the file explorer uses are supported in the recycling bin.

We will name some:

  • Search files. You can use the search bar in the upper right corner of the window to find a document or file. You can include all or part of the name, including only the extension. It is important to say that the search will not be performed within the files included in the trash.
  • Sort by category. As in Windows Explorer, it is possible to sort the documents contained in alphabetical order, by the original location, deletion date or extension. To achieve this you just have to click on the name of each column. If you want to reverse the order, repeat this step. You can include more categories by right-clicking on any column.
  • Group by category. By right-clicking on a blank space, you can collect multiple files according to the criteria you choose. These match the columns.
  • Scan with antivirus. One of the tasks that can be performed inside the trash can is to analyze its content with the protection program that you have installed.
  • Restore discarded file. It is without a doubt the most important function and the one that justifies the existence of the wastebasket. If by mistake we delete a document, except for permanent deletion (see below), we can recover it from this tool. Select the document you need to recover, right-click on it and choose "Restore". It will reappear in its source file.

Hide trash icon

In Windows 10

  • Enter the configuration menu. To do this press "Windows key + i".
  • Choose "Personalization".
  • In the sidebar, choose "Themes". In this window we can configure the appearance of the interface.
  • At the far right of the window, you will find the option "Desktop Icon Settings" Press there.
  • Doing so will open a small window. Uncheck "Recycle Bin".
  • Press accept.
  • If you want to see it again, perform the same process and check this option again.

In Windows 8

  • Go to the desk.
  • Press the left button on it.
  • Choose "Personalize".
  • Choose "Change desktop icons"
  • Continue with the method from the previous step.

In Windows 7

  • To access the window "Change desktop icons". Enter the Control Panel in the Start Menu.
  • Choose "Appearance and customization".
  • Do the same in "Personalization".
  • In the left panel you will find the option you are looking for.

Change and customize icon

Performing this customization will not be possible with the method we use on other files or archives. To achieve this we must follow the same steps that we mentioned above, until you get to the "Desktop Icon Settings" window:

  • In it we must select which is the image that we want to replace (there are two: full and one empty bin).
  • Press "Change icon". A new small window will open.
  • You can choose between the icons pre-set by Windows. But if you have downloaded or created your own .ICO file, click "Examine".
  • In the browser, select the replacement image.
  • Press "To accept" until it has been changed.

Delete files without sending them to the trash

If we assume the risk of permanently losing this file, you can delete it as follows:

  • Select the item.
  • Press the keys "Shift (Shift) + Delete (Delete)".
  • A confirmation window will open, press "To accept".
  • Another method is to access the properties of the trash.
  • To do this, press the secondary click on it and choose "Properties".
  • Choose Do not move files to the Recycle Bin. Remove files immediately upon deletion. ” Then Accept. Unlike the previous one, this option will not allow you to choose for each file.

In the case of deleting an item from an external disk or removable device, it is not necessary. Since they will not go through the trash.

Schedule automatic file deletion

Schedule automatic file deletion

  • Open the Windows Task Scheduler (by typing its name in the start menu).
  • Once there click on the option "Create basic task", located in the right panel.
  • We indicate the name of the task, for example "Empty trash" and click on next.
  • We indicate the frequency with which we want the task to run (it can be daily, weekly, etc.) and "following" to choose the start date and time.
  • In "Action" we mark the option "Start a program" and "following".
  • In the first text box we enter "Cmd.exe" (without quotation marks). In a second "Echo S | PowerShell.exe -NoProfile -Command Clear-RecycleBin".
  • To finish, press "Finalize".

3 Tips to get the most out of the Windows recycle bin

To keep the computer healthy, it is recommended not to have the trash at the top. Follow these simple tips to achieve it:

Empty trash regularly

Periodically check the recycling basket. You can find files that you accidentally deleted or realized that it needs to be emptied. Don't let it fill up, this can slow down your system.

Organize items in it

Keep the trash bin tidy. It doesn't matter if it's by name or deletion date. It should be easy for you to find an item.

Pin icon on taskbar

If you want to always have this tool within reach, perform these steps:

  • Create a shortcut to trash, you can do it with the right button on it.
  • Do the same with access, but choose "Anchor to Start".
  • Open the Start menu and drag the basket icon onto the taskbar.