How to delete a folder that is not deleted

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Valery Aloyants
@valeryaloyants
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How to delete a folder that is not deleted on Windows

The most common reason folders get stuck on Windows it is to be found in the processes in progress: if a program or a system "job" uses a folder (or a file resident inside it) when you try to delete it, the operating system prevents the completion of the procedure to avoid behavior unexpected events of the program in question or of Windows itself. Below I point out the most effective methods to solve the problem.



Check running programs


The first thing to do for delete a folder that is not deleted is to check that it is not used by any running program: therefore, before trying to delete it again, close all active programs on the computer (saving the open work, if necessary) and make sure that there are no applications in the background (i.e. running , but invisible) in the system notification area, which you can access by clicking on the up arrow (Windows 10) or lateral (Windows 8.1 and earlier) located in the clock area (bottom right).

If this method doesn't work, then you can ask for help at Activity management Windows: this program allows direct access to Windows processes, that is to any running entity (system and non-system), even if it does not have its own window. To access the Task Manager, press the combination on the keyboard Ctrl + Shift + Esc, or press the key combination Win + R and type in the comme taskmgr.exe, Followed by Submit.


At this point, press on the voice More details placed in the lower edge of the window and move to the item Processes / Details: identify the process related to the application that "locks" the folder, do click destroy on it, select the item End Process Tree / End Process Tree from the contextual menu proposed and confirm the intention to proceed by pressing the button End Process Tree / End. At this point, try again to delete the locked folder.

If you do not succeed in your intent even in this way, I suggest you restart your computer and try again with the deletion; if the restart is not effective either, access the Safe mode, to avoid the possibility of a crash by a driver or a fundamental startup program, and try to delete the folder again. How do you say? Are you unable to access Windows Safe Mode? Don't worry: I have given you precise instructions on this in my dedicated guide.


IoBit Unlocker

Were you unable to delete the locked folder with the methods reported above? Then I recommend you take a look at IoBit Unlocker: if you had never heard of it, it is a completely free software that allows you to unlock folders locked by Windows, with the ability to delete them immediately or, in case of problems, at the next system restart.



To begin with, connected to the download page of the program and presses the button Scarica free. On the next screen, click on one of the two items Download@MajorGeeks placed on the right and wait for the download of the program to be completed.

Once this is done, launch the program you just downloaded and press the buttons Yes, NEXT, Accept NEXT, remove the check mark from the box next to the wording Add IObit to My Bookmarks, still presses on NEXT, wait for the installation process to finish and press the button to conclude end.

At this point, on the main screen of the program that opens, presses the button Add and select the locked folder with the help of the File Explorer panel proposed on the screen, and then press the button OK. Alternatively, identify the “offending” folder on your computer, do it click destroy on it, select the item IObit Unlocker from the proposed context menu and presses the button Yes.

Anyway, once you've added the locked folder to the program, click on dart placed next to the item Unlock e, remembering that the folder can no longer be recovered, select the item Unlock & Delete from the proposed menu and then press the button OK and confirm the willingness to proceed. If the procedure is not successful, repeat all the steps taking care to set the check mark next to the item Force unlock.


How to delete a folder that doesn't delete on macOS

As regards the Mac and the operating system MacOS, you will hardly need to turn to third-party programs to delete the folders that are not deleted. If you are unable to remedy the problem by restarting the Finder and / or stopping a specific application, you can in fact contact the trusted terminal to delete locked folders. Below I am going to explain everything there is to know about it.

Restart the Finder

The simplest method of delete a folder that is not deleted on macOS is to attempt a restart of the Finder: although this is a rare event, it can happen that the Mac file manager blocks a folder in some way, thus preventing its deletion.

To restart the Finder, simply select its icon from the bar Dock using the combination alt + click destro, and then choose the item Reopen from the menu that appears. If even this does not help to unlock the folder in question, try to close all the applications currently used: to close a program, all you have to do is select it from the Dock bar to bring it to the foreground and press the key combination cmd + q on the keyboard. Once this is done, try to delete the locked folder as usual.

Use the Terminal

If the procedure mentioned above is not successful, you just have to contact the terminal: before going on, however, keep in mind that deleting a folder (e all the files it contains) through the Terminal cannot be undone. Also, make sure you type the exact path to the folder you want to delete, otherwise you risk deleting things you don't want!

Having made these necessary clarifications, it's time to get to work: first, start the terminal calling it from the folder Utility on your Mac, type in the comme sudo rm -rf / path / folder, press the button Submit, type the administrator password and crushes again Submit. Alternatively, to decrease the risk of errors, type the string sudo rm -rf without pressing Enter, drag and drop the folder to be deleted in the Terminal window (so that its path is added automatically) e, once this operation is completed, press the key Submit keyboard and complete the deletion procedure.

How to delete a folder that is not deleted on Linux

It is not uncommon for a folder to get "stuck" on Linux: some applications, in fact, can "forget" to release files and directories, making the operating system believe that they are busy and thus making them not removable. Furthermore, it is possible that the user does not have permission to intervene on the folder, so the operating system could prevent its deletion. In the following lines I am going to show you how to remedy these eventualities.

Check running programs

If the folder you want to delete is blocked by a running program, all you have to do is close the application in question (by clicking on the X located at the top right or top left, depending on the distribution you use) and try to delete the folder again.

If the blocking program is running in the background, i.e. without a visible window, you can close it through the System monitor: call the program from Activity view or from the main menu of your distribution, press the button Processes located at the top and identifies in the proposed list the name of the program you intend to close (if you intend to search by name, you can click on the icon in the shape of magnifying glass located at the top and use the search bar that appears on the screen).

Once you have found the program in question (eg. soft.bin) fai click destroy on its name and select the item Ends from the contextual menu proposed, then confirming the operation by pressing the button End process. At this point, you can retry deleting the locked folder. Keep in mind that by closing a system process it could become unstable and force you to reboot.

Use the Terminal

The system monitor did not come in hey and the folder continues to be locked, perhaps because you do not have sufficient permissions to delete? You can work around this problem by using the terminal: it is sufficient, in fact, to issue a precise comme by acquiring administrator permissions to delete any file and folder present on the system.

Before continuing, be careful: deleting a folder in this way could make the program that is using it unstable or inoperable. Furthermore, a single typo could lead to the deletion of files that, instead, should not be deleted: be careful, therefore, before proceeding in this way.

Having made the necessary recommendations, it's time to make everything happen: start the terminal recalling it from Activity view or from the main menu of the distribution in your possession, type in it the comme sudo rm -rf / path / folder/to delete, press the button Submit, enter the administration password and press the button again Submit to confirm everything.

Again, you can minimize the risk of errors by initially typing the string sudo rm -rf, without pressing Enter, and then complete the comme by dragging and dropping the folder to be deleted into the Terminal, so that the precise path is written automatically. At this point, just press the button Submit and proceed as seen above.

How to delete a folder that is not deleted on Android

If you have made it this far, it means that you are perfectly capable of deleting a folder that cannot be deleted from your computer; in your specific case, however, you need something that allows you to perform this operation on Android, as you urgently need additional space which, due to the locked folder, you are unable to obtain.

The first suggestion I would like to give you is to restart Android in safe mode and try to delete the bulky folder from there. To do this, press and hold the physical shutdown button on the terminal, then perform a prolonged tap on the virtual button Restart that appears on the screen and presses the button OK when the notification about restarting in safe mode appears. Once the bulky folder is deleted, you can exit Safe Mode by simply restarting the terminal!

How do you say? Did this solution not work either? As a last resort, you can try to do this using the root permissions (here a guide on how to get them) and a special advanced file manager such as Root Explorer. I want to warn you immediately, however, that the root procedure, as well as the deletion of a locked folder (even worse if it belongs to the system) with elevated permissions, could seriously compromise the functioning of the terminal in your possession: carry out these proceed only if you are fully convinced of what you are about to do.



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