Thursday, February 08, 2018

Bypassing the Recycle Bin, A Better Way to Delete Files

There are plenty of instances when the recycle bin on a device saves an important file and makes your day. Sometimes a file is deleted, whether intentionally or accidentally, and when we realize we still need it, we are relieved to find it still available to us. There are also situations when we are positive we will never need a file again. Some examples  are: 
  • The file was downloaded as a reference that it is no longer needed
  • The wrong file was downloaded
  • A new version of the file has been created with a new name
  • A new version of the file has been created and the old one is no longer appropriate to use (for instance annual government forms)
  • Other various reasons
Whatever the reason, if you are confident you no longer need a document, bypassing the recycle bin when deleting it is a much better way to remove those files.

Bypassing the Recycle Bin, A Better Way to Delete Files


Managing files and documents by deleting those no longer needed is a great way to free up disk space on your local device. Unfortunately, if you forget to empty your recycle bin no space is recovered. Instead you simply modified the location of the file rather than freeing up the space it is using. 

Bypassing the recycle bin when deleting files is much more efficient, especially if you find it a challenge to regularly empty the recycle bin. NOTE: Do not bypass the recycle bin when deleting files you might need again later, even if you only suspect you might need them again. Bypassing the recycle bin permanently deletes files and unless there is some other form of file backup or recovery in place, there will be no way to access these files again.

Bypassing the recycle bin on a Windows device
  • Select the file or files to permanently delete
  • Press the Shift and Delete keys at the same time
  • You will be prompted with a warning that this will permanently delete the file

  • Click "Yes" to permanently delete the files

Bypassing the recycle bin on a Mac device
  • Select the file or files to permanently delete
  • Press the Option and Command and Delete buttons at the same time
  • You will be prompted with a warning letting you know this will immediately delete the files

  • Click "Delete" to permanently delete the files

Bypassing the recycle bin is a much more efficient way to delete files, especially larger files. Deleting files this way frees up space on your local device rather than just changing the location of files as in the case of regular file deletion. However, bypassing the recycle bin to delete files is permanent and cannot be undone. This means it should be used with caution and only if you are absolutely sure you no longer need those files.

As always, if you can keep a device free of unimportant files and programs it will perform better and last longer!


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