Tech – for Everyone

Tech Tips and Tricks & Advice – written in plain English.

Repair The Recycle Bin

If you have troubles with your Recycle Bin functioning correctly – preventing you from deleting files (aka “empty”-ing it) – a few simple steps can restore functionality (or a missing icon).

Is the Recycle Bin (Icon) Missing?
This first “repair” is for those of you who no longer see the Recycle Bin icon on your Desktop, and want it back.

  • Click your Start button, and Control Panel
  • Double-click on Personalizations
  • Click on Change desktop icons
  • Click (to place a ‘check’ in) the Recycle Bin checkbox
  • Click Apply, then OK

That will restore the icon to your Desktop. (You can “drag” it to a position of your liking.)

Having trouble with emptying?

1) First, you need to “unhide” (aka “show”) your system files and folders (if they aren’t already. If so, skip to Step 2).

  • Click your Start button, and Control Panel
  • Double-click on Folder Options
  • Click on the View tab and scroll down just a bit
  • Click on the Show radio button
  • Click Apply, then OK

2) Next, Click your Start button, and Computer.

3) Double-click the Local disk (c:) icon.

4) Locate, then right-click on $RECYCLE.BIN, and select Delete. If prompted, click Yes to confirm. (Yes. Delete it. It has been “corrupted”, in Geek parlance, and needs to go away.)

5) The Delete File dialog will appear – click Yes to confirm.

[ Tip: Checking the Do this for all current items checkbox will avoid having to confirm the deletion of each file.]

6) Reboot (aka “restart”) your computer.

Once your computer has started back up, the Recycle Bin will automatically be rebuilt/repaired.

That’s it. You’re done. (Except, maybe, [say, if other people use your computer] you may want to go back to Step 1 and hide the system files and folders again.. to prevent any accidental disastrous deleting.. Your choice.)

Today’s reading/download reco(s):

* An Instant Data and System Recovery Kit

“If you have been a long term computer user I am sure somewhere along the line you may have experienced a failure of sorts; whether it be from operating system errors, a mistake you made, a malware attack or from good old file corruption. I have always said that computers were made to fail; and, fail they eventually will.”  Read more

* iPhone tracking only part of Apple’s security and privacy shortcomings

“The revelation by a pair of researchers that iPhones store location data for the life of the device is making waves. How much does it really matter? Chad Perrin suggests the problem goes deeper.” Read more

* IE9 versus Chrome: which one blocks malware better?

Social engineering has become the dominant method of distribution for fake antivirus software these days. Google Chrome puts you at risk: in my testing, malware broke through Chrome’s defenses.READ FULL STORY

Your “feedback” is requested: (Thanks to all who have participated!)

(Voting is following my prediction…)

Copyright 2007-2011 © “Tech Paul” (Paul Eckstrom). All Rights Reserved.

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April 26, 2011 - Posted by | advice, computers, how to, Microsoft, PC, software, tech, troubleshooting, Vista, Windows, Windows 7 | , , , , , , , ,


  1. Great article Paul! I want to give you a shout because you helped me with this very issue once. Thanks again and keep up the great informative work.


    Comment by g | April 26, 2011 | Reply

    • g,
      Hey, there, amigo! Que paso? It’s been a while.. I appreciate your support and surely hope all is super “groovy” at Casa G!


      Comment by techpaul | April 26, 2011 | Reply

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