Everyone knows that deleted files go to the Recycle Bin unless one uses the Shift + Delete command to delete files. The files in the Recycle Bin can always be restored to the original location with a click.
At times, when you try to delete a file, you might get “The Recycle Bin on x:\ is corrupted. Do you want to empty the Recycle Bin for this drive” error message. At times, the Recycle Bin might fail to open as well. This happens when the $Recycle.bin folder is corrupted. As you probably know, each drive has its own $Recycle.bin folder at the root of the drive (hidden by default). In other words, each drive on your PC has its own Recycle Bin.
You can address the Recycle Bin issues by deleting the $Recycle.bin folder. When you delete the $Recycle.bin folder, Windows 10 automatically creates a fresh copy of it, and the new folder fixes the issue. Although you can configure the File Explorer to show the hidden $Recycle.bin folder, you cannot delete it via the File Explorer. So, you will need to execute a command in the Command Prompt to delete the $Recycle.bin folder and fix the corrupted Recycle Bin.
In this guide, we will show you how to fix all Recycle Bin issues by resetting (deleting) the Recycle Bin in Windows 10.
IMPORTANT: When you reset (delete) the Recycle Bin using this method, all data from the Recycle Bin might be deleted. So, you might lose your data from the Recycle Bin.
Reset the Recycle Bin via Command Prompt
Complete the given below directions to reset the $Recycle.bin folder and fix the Recycle Bin issue.
Step 1: Open the Command Prompt as administrator. You can do that by typing CMD in the Start/taskbar search field, right-clicking on Command Prompt entry in the search results, and then clicking the Run as administrator option.
Click the Yes button when you get the User Account Control dialog.
Step 2: At the Command Prompt window, execute the following command:
rd /s /q C:\$Recycle.bin
In the above command, replace the letter “C” with the drive letter of the drive for which you are getting the error. For instance, if you are getting Recycle Bin error while trying to delete a file from drive E, then the command would be:
rd /s /q E:\$Recycle.bin
Press the Enter key to execute the command.
You might also to read our how to automatically clear files older than 30 days from Recycle Bin in Windows 10 guide.