How to Delete a File That Won't Delete in Windows 11/10?

5 mins read

Updated on 2024-06-18 11:54:13 to Windows Fix

Sometimes when you want to delete a file but can’t do it. Why and how to force delete a file in Windows? This article will introduce some ways on how to delete a file that won’t delete in Windows 10/11/8/7. However, if you mistakenly deleted files from Windows or other storage devices like USB, external disk, etc., Tenorshare 4DDIG offers professional data recovery services. Read on to learn more.

choose troubleshoot option

Part 1. Why Can't I Delete a File on Windows 10/11?

There are a lot of reasons behind that file won't delete Windows 10. On behalf of this, we must know the reason behind this problem only after that can we fix this problem. So. check out the reasons that are mentioned below.

The user runs the same file in another program or application. So, you cannot delete file open in system.

  • Maybe a sharing violation has been done.
  • You are not able to delete files because access is denied.
  • The same source or the file destination is in use.
  • Maybe a directory of the file is corrupted.
  • Scan your device with the help of an antivirus. Perhaps there is a virus that can be rid of it.

If you are in straits with how to force delete an undeletable file, then there is no need to worry that there are many ways to resolve delete files that won't delete kind of issue. We are going to write step by step guide below.

Part 2. 3 Feasible Ways to Delete Files That Cannot Be Deleted in Windows

Follow all the ways below to fix files won’t delete in Windows 11/10.

Way 1. Force Delete a File or Folder using CMD

CMD stands for the Command Prompt. This is a very beneficial tool for the Windows computer. Users can try to delete files or folders that cannot be deleted in Windows with the help of it. Follow all the steps carefully on how to delete files from command prompt.

  • Press Windows + R keys on the keyboard, then type “CMD” in the prompt command windows and run it as an administrator by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Enter keys.
  • Now, you should input the command line and press the Enter button to delete the file.

The command line is like below:

del c:\users\pc\desktop\note.txt.

You can replace “c:\users\pc\desktop\note.txt” with the path of the file that you want to delete.

force delete files with cmd

Way 2. Shift + Delete Undeletable Files

There are two ways to delete files in the windows system. One is simply using the delete option, and the other one is deleting files permanently. When you can’t delete a file normally, you can delete undeletable files Windows 10 by selecting the target file or folder and then press Shift + Delete keys on the keyboard for a try.

Way 3. Delete Files That Won't Delete in Windows Safe Mode

Safe mode is used for the diagnostic mode. If your computer shows some irrelevant issue, then the user must diagnose or troubleshoot the device with the help of safe mode. With the help of this mode, the user can delete the files forcibly. Now users need to follow all the steps that are given below.

  • Navigate to the Settings panel, and choose Update & Security > Recovery.
  • Select Restart now under Advanced startup option.

    click restart now in Windows advanced start option
  • After the PC restarts to the Choose an option screen, select Troubleshoot > Advanced options > Startup Settings > Restart.

    choose troubleshoot option advanced options windows startup settings restart windows
  • Now, your computer restarts. At this time users need to press “F4” or “4” to enter in the safe mode.

  • In the safe mode user can choose the file that is going to be deleted. After deleting the file, the user needs to restart the computer and exit for safe mode.

    force delete files in safe mode

Part 3. How to Recover Permanently Deleted Files on Windows?

Hope the above three solutions help to get rid of a file that won't delete in Windows. Suppose you accidentally deleted a file that is useful from your Windows computer, you can undelete the file using a professional data recovery software like Tenorshare 4DDIG. 4DDIG can easily recover files from Windows, Mac, or other storage devices after permanent deletion, virus deletion, computer crash, etc.

Highlighted features about the 4DDiG Data Recovery software

  • More than 550 file formats are to be recovered with the help of 4DDiG Data Recovery software, such as photos, videos, music, documents, emails, and many more.
  • Users can recover all types of formatted data, corrupted Windows OS, Mac, or recover data from hard drive.
  • Complete recovery of lost data from any type of Windows PC, laptops, or removable devices like USB, SSD, hard drive, etc.
  • The user can also preview the file before recovery.
  • The recovery rate of the data is very high.
  • Zero loss of data at the time of recovery.
  • Completely secure and safe at the time of use.

Secure Download


Secure Download

  • Firstly, you need to download and run this software on a computer. If you are going to recover data from a removable device, you also need to connect the device to the computer with a card reader or USB cable. Choose the location from the main interface and click Start button to continue.

    run 4DDIG data recovery
  • After a few minutes, the scanning process of the disk has been completed. Then all the recoverable files are present on the screen. However, if you can’t find your lost files in the scanning results, you can switch to the Deep Scan mode. It will scan more deeply to find lost files.

    scanning the disk
  • Now, you can preview and select file(s) to recover. Don’t save the files to the original location to avoid further overwriting.

    recover deleted files from windows

Secure Download


Secure Download

The Bottom Line

After reading this article, your question of “how to delete a file that wont delete” may end here because all the possible and best professional ways are discussed above. We hope that after following the step-by-step process, your issue is related to how to delete undeletable files in Windows 10 has been resolved. And in case you mistakenly deleted or lost a needed file in Windows, 4DDiG Data Recovery software can quickly recover data for you.

William Bollson (senior editor)

William Bollson, the editor-in-chief of 4DDiG, devotes to providing the best solutions for Windows and Mac related issues, including data recovery, repair, error fixes.

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