FIX: Windows 10 explorer deleted files still show

Tashreef Shareef
by Tashreef Shareef
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5 ways to fix Windows 10 File Delete issue

In Windows 10 users can permanently or temporarily delete folders. That said, many users have reported that Windows 10 keep restoring the deleted files regardless of the location. After deleting the file, the files re-appear after a refresh.

Here’s how one user described this peculiar issue.

I have several empty folders on my desktop.  When I delete them, they immediately re-appear.  They also re-appear if I rename them…

Delete the re-appearing files or folders for good with the steps below.

What to do if deleted files and folder keep showing on Windows 10?

1. Use Shift-Delete to Delete the Files

  1. Open the File Explorer and navigate to the location where the problematic files are located.
  2. Select all the files you want to delete.
  3. Now press and hold the Shift Key on your keyboard and press the Delete key simultaneously.Permanently delete file
  4. This should delete the file or folder permanently.
  5. Check if the files re-appear again.
  6. If this resolves the error, it could be because of some permission issue that Windows restores the files from the Recycle bin. However, since you permanently delete the files, Windows will not restore the files again.

2. Scan for Virus / Malware


  1. Any malware-infected PCs are known to show such abnormal behavior where the deleted files start restoring automatically to avoid the removal of a harmful threat.
  2. If you have an antivirus installed, perform a complete scan and remove any threat detected by the security program.
  3. If you don’t have any antivirus installed, download and install Malwarebytes Premium. It comes with a free 7 days trial and is very capable of removing any harmful files from your system.
  4. Make sure you empty the quarantine to avoid restoration in the future.

We have a piece on deleted files re-appearing on Windows 10. Check out these guides for more information.

3. Repair Files and Folder Automatically

Windows File and Folder Repair Tool

  1. Go to Windows FIle and Folder Diagnose page.
  2. Download Windows File Folder Diagnose tool by clicking the Download button.
  3. Run the file and click Next.
  4. It will scan the system and ask you to select the problem you are facing. Select “Problems with deleting files and folders” and click Next.
  5. It will again check for any problem with the Recycle Bin and system files responsible for removing the file.
  6. It will show all the programs that were fixed in the process. Close the repair tool.
  7. Try to delete the problematic files and folders again and check if the error is resolved.

4. Repair Recycle Bin

  1. Type cmd in the search bar.
  2. Right-click on Command Prompt option and select Run as Administrator.
  3. In the command prompt type, the following command press enter.
    rd /s /q C:\$Recycle.bin 
  4. Wait for the command to execute successfully.
    Command to Repair Recycle Bin
  5. Type exit to close Command Prompt.
  6. Now try to delete the folder or file again and check if the issue is resolved.