How to Delete Files on Windows 11: A Step-by-Step Guide for Users

Deleting files on Windows 11 is a straightforward process that helps keep your system clutter-free. By following a few easy steps, you can remove unwanted files from your device. We’ll walk you through each step, ensuring you know exactly what to do.

How to Delete Files on Windows 11

In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to delete files on Windows 11 using simple steps. Whether you want to delete a single file or multiple files, this guide will help you efficiently remove them from your system.

Step 1: Locate the File(s)

Find the file(s) you want to delete on your computer.
To start, you need to know where your file is. Use File Explorer to navigate to the folder containing the file. If you’re unsure where it is, use the search bar at the top of File Explorer to type in the file name.

Step 2: Select the File(s)

Click on the file(s) to select them.
If you are deleting a single file, just click on it. For multiple files, hold down the “Ctrl” key and click on each file you want to delete. This allows you to delete multiple files at once.

Step 3: Right-Click and Choose “Delete”

Right-click on the selected file(s) and choose “Delete” from the context menu.
Alternatively, you can press the “Delete” key on your keyboard. A dialog box will appear asking if you want to move the file(s) to the Recycle Bin. Confirm by clicking “Yes.”

Step 4: Empty the Recycle Bin

After deleting, go to the Recycle Bin and empty it.
Open the Recycle Bin, right-click anywhere inside it, and choose “Empty Recycle Bin.” This permanently deletes the files from your computer.

Step 5: Confirm Deletion

Confirm that the files are permanently removed.
After emptying the Recycle Bin, the files are gone for good. Double-check the folder where the files were located to ensure they have been deleted.

Once you’ve completed these steps, the files you selected will be removed from your computer. They will first go to the Recycle Bin, and after you empty it, they will be permanently deleted.

Tips for Deleting Files on Windows 11

  • Use File Explorer’s search bar to quickly find files you want to delete.
  • Use “Shift + Delete” to bypass the Recycle Bin and permanently delete files immediately.
  • Regularly empty your Recycle Bin to free up storage space.
  • Make use of Windows’ Storage Sense feature to automatically remove temporary files and manage disk space.
  • Check the file properties if you can’t delete it; it might be read-only, requiring you to change its attributes first.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I recover a file I accidentally deleted?

You can recover a file from the Recycle Bin by right-clicking it and selecting “Restore.” This puts the file back in its original location.

Can I delete system files?

It’s not recommended to delete system files as this can affect your computer’s performance. Only delete files you are sure you no longer need.

What happens if I delete a file that a program is using?

Windows will typically prevent you from deleting files currently in use by a program. Close the program using the file and try again.

How do I delete large files that won’t fit in the Recycle Bin?

Use “Shift + Delete” to permanently delete large files that bypass the Recycle Bin.

Is there a way to automatically delete old files?

Yes, use the Storage Sense feature in Windows 11. Go to Settings > System > Storage and enable Storage Sense to automatically delete old files.


  1. Locate the file(s).
  2. Select the file(s).
  3. Right-click and choose “Delete.”
  4. Empty the Recycle Bin.
  5. Confirm deletion.


Learning how to delete files on Windows 11 is a fundamental skill that helps keep your system organized and running smoothly. By following the straightforward steps outlined in this guide, you can effectively manage your file storage and ensure you have enough space for what matters most. Remember to periodically check and clean out your files, making use of tools like Storage Sense to automate some of the process. Keeping your computer clutter-free not only improves performance but also makes it easier to find the files you actually need. So, take action today and start managing your files efficiently on Windows 11. If you have more questions, revisit the FAQ section or explore further reading on Windows file management.

Join Our Free Newsletter

Featured guides and deals

You may opt out at any time. Read our Privacy Policy