Summary: Can’t find Recycle Bin in Windows 10? Read this comprehensive guide to learn how to perform Recycle Bin recovery. You can also try professional data recovery software to recover lost data from Recycle Bin. Get the trial version below!
Whenever you lose or accidentally delete your data, Recycle Bin is the first place where you look for your data to restore it. But, what if you can’t find the Windows 10 Recycle Bin folder on your system?
My data is gone forever!
Isn’t that what you are thinking?
Don’t get anxious! You can efficiently perform Recycle Bin Recovery with some tested methods shared in this blog. We have also shared the method to restore permanently deleted files from the Recycle Bin.
What is Recycle Bin?
Recycle Bin is a folder or directory in Windows systems, which acts as a ‘holding bay’ where deleted files and folders are temporarily stored. When you delete the files using only the ‘Del’ key, they are not permanently deleted. Instead, they are sent to the Recycle Bin. However, the items stored in this folder get permanently deleted after 30 days from the date they are sent to it. To recover permanently deleted files and folders, you would need a dedicated Windows data recovery software.
The items remain in the Recycle Bin until you empty it or when the items cross the expiry date of the storage. Usually, the Recycle Bin icon is found on the Desktop by default. But there are times when you may lose access to this folder and not retrieve the necessary documents stored on it.
How Did You Lose Recycle Bin in Windows 10?
Several users have reported queries about missing the Recycle Bin folder on different technology platforms. Here are a few examples in which they described how they ended up losing access to the Recycle Bin folder:
Common Reasons behind Missing Recycle Bin Windows 10
There could be several reasons due to which you can’t find Recycle Bin in Windows 10.
- A problematic Windows 10 update
- Malware or virus infection
- Changes made by UI customization software
- Damaged and altered registry file, etc.
How to perform Recycle Bin Recovery in Windows 10?
Irrespective of the reason, you can restore your Recycle Bin folder with some easy DIY methods. Follow the troubleshooting methods that may help you get back to the Recycle Bin and the data stored on it.
Method 1: Check Desktop Icon Settings
If your system is infected with malware, there may be chances you may face different issues with the Recycle Bin gone missing. If you can’t find Recycle Bin Windows 10, you may leverage the ‘show or hide the Recycle Bin’ settings, enabling you to easily access this folder. Follow the given steps to perform the Recycle Bin recovery:
a. Go to Desktop, right-click on it, and choose Personalize. (See Image 1)
b. From the left pane of the Settings window, navigate to Themes.
c. Scroll down the window and click Desktop icon settings. (See Image 2)
d. The Desktop icon settings window will open.
e. Check the Recycle Bin box and click OK to restore the hidden Recycle Bin. (See Image 3)
If the data is missing from the bin, head to the data recovery section below. In case Recycle Bin is still missing from the Desktop, follow these sub-steps:
Method 2: Turn off Tablet Mode on your Windows 10 PC
If you are using Tablet Mode in your Windows 10, the desktop icons may not display. The Recycle Bin is usually stored on the Desktop. However, if the Tablet Mode is on, you may not be able to see or find it. To see and access your Recycle Bin, you need to turn the Tablet Mode off on your PC/laptop.
To turn off the Tablet Mode, follow the given steps:
a. Open System Settings by pressing Windows + I and go to System. (See Image 4)
b. Next, open Tablet Mode from the left pane on the Settings windows. (See Image 5)
c. On the Tablet Mode screen, toggle off “Hide app icons on the taskbar in tablet mode” and “Automatically hide the taskbar in tablet mode.” (See Image 6)
d. Now, restart your system and check if you can see the Recycle Bin folder.
Method 3: Use RUN Command
If you have encountered an unknown system error and the Recycle Bin got lost due to it, you may use a specific RUN command to re-gain your access to it. Follow the below-mentioned steps:
a. Open Run dialog box by pressing Windows + R.
b. Type C:$Recycle.Bin and press Enter.
c. Now, check if you can see the Recycle Bin folder and retrieve data from it.
Method 4: Create a Recycle Bin Shortcut
You may also try to get back access to the missing Recycle Bin by creating a shortcut for it. Follow the below-mentioned steps to create the shortcut of the Recycle Bin folder.
a. Open File Explorer, then go to View.
b. Follow Options > Folder Options > View tab.
c. Then select Select Show hidden files, folders, and drives. (See Image 8)
d. Now, uncheck the ‘Hide protected operating system files (Recommended).’ (See Image 9)
e. Finally, click Apply > OK.
f. After this, go back to File Explorer and navigate to the drive where you installed Windows 10.
g. Right-click on $Recycle.Bin and select the Desktop to create the shortcut.
h. You can check the Recycle Bin and restore data from it.
I have restored my Recycle Bin but can’t find any data. What do I do? How do I recover my data?
Recover Deleted File from Recycle Bin with Stellar Data Recovery
Some Windows 10 users reported that they were able to restore the Recycle Bin. However, when they opened the folder, there were no files in it. In case you couldn’t find data in the Recycle Bin or lost data from it, try using Windows data recovery software, such as Stellar Data Recovery.
This DIY software lets you extract all kinds of data, such as lost documents, email files, photos, videos, and more. It supports data retrieval in all data loss scenarios, including accidental deletion, formatting, corruption, malware-attack, and more. Even it helps you restore permanently deleted files in Windows 10. Follow the given steps:
a. Download, install, and launch Stellar Data Recovery software.
b. Select ‘Everything’ or choose the type of data you want to retrieve from the initial dashboard- Select What to Recover. (See Image 10)
c. Next, choose ‘Choose Location’ under ‘Common Locations’ on the ‘Recover from’ screen, and click Scan. (See Image 11)
Click ‘Choose Location’ under ‘Common Locations’ and then select the folder location from where your files were deleted—that you wanted to restore from Recycle Bin
d. On completion of the scanning process, the files will show on the screen.
e. Select the files you want to restore and click Recover. (See image 12)
f. Click ‘Browse’ to choose a select location and click ‘Start Saving.’ Wait for the software to save your recovered files at your desired location. (See Image 13)
How to Use Recycle Bin Effectively
Caution: Do not save the recovered files in the same drive or location from where you lost them. Always use an external storage drive to save data and prevent data overwriting.
Tips to Use Recycle Bin Efficiently to Avoid Data Loss in Future
Recycle Bin has its property settings, which you can edit and modify to define how the OS (Operating System) and the Recycle Bin handles data deletion. You may access the Recycle Bin settings and follow the given steps to avoid data loss in the future.
a. Go to Recycle Bin, right-click on it, and choose Properties.
b. Click ‘Customize size’ and allocate the specific storage space to the Recycle Bin. (See Image 14)
c. Beyond the storage space, the Recycle Bin won’t store items and will be lost permanently.
d. Additionally, enable ‘Display delete confirmation dialog’ if you want to see the ‘confirmation dialog box.’ (See Image 15)
e. Such confirmation will save you from deleting files and folders accidentally. Moreover, keep a backup of your data to avoid data loss.
f. Also, keep a powerful Windows data recovery software, such as Stellar Data Recovery handy to restore data quickly.
Such confirmation dialog can save you from accidentally deleting files largely. However, to avoid permanent data loss, always keep a backup along with data recovery software such as Stellar Data Recovery handy. The software helps when files are not found in the Recycle Bin or backup.
Recovering files from the Recycle Bin is easy, but when the Recycle Bin goes missing, you may need external help to recover it. The Recycle Bin may go missing for several reasons, such as virus or malware infection, some UI Tweaking software, system settings, and modification in the registry file.
You may try the methods that we have discussed in this blog to perform the Recycle Bin recovery. If you retrieve Recycle Bin but find no data stored in it, we suggest using data recovery software, such as Stellar Data Recovery for Windows. This DIY software can extract any data from emptied Recycle Bin, formatted, corrupted, crashed Windows PC, and storage drives.