Clear Recycle Bin programmatically with Powershell

╄→尐↘猪︶ㄣ 提交于 2019-12-10 09:34:01


One of the hardest things I've had to do is access Windows APIs with PowerShell. I want to erase the Recycle Bin using the API in Shell32.dll. There are other ways of doing it, but they are typically bypassing the normal Windows processes and in this case, I want to do it the "right" way.


After a few hours, I came up with this.

using System;
using System.ComponentModel;
using System.Runtime.InteropServices;

namespace shell32 {

    //Put all the variables required for the DLLImports here
    enum RecycleFlags : uint { SHERB_NOCONFIRMATION = 0x00000001, SHERB_NOPROGRESSUI = 0x00000002, SHERB_NOSOUND = 0x00000004 }

    public static class RecycleBin {
            internal static extern uint SHEmptyRecycleBin(IntPtr hwnd, string pszRootPath, RecycleFlags dwFlags);

    public class ShellWrapper : IDisposable {

        // Creates a new wrapper for the local machine
        public ShellWrapper() { }

        // Disposes of this wrapper
        public void Dispose() {

        //Put public function here
        public uint Empty() {
            uint ret = RecycleBin.SHEmptyRecycleBin(IntPtr.Zero, null, RecycleFlags.SHERB_NOCONFIRMATION | RecycleFlags.SHERB_NOPROGRESSUI | RecycleFlags.SHERB_NOSOUND);
            return ret;

        // Occurs on destruction of the Wrapper
        ~ShellWrapper() {

    } //Wrapper class
Add-Type -TypeDefinition $TypeDefinition -PassThru | out-null
$RecycleBin=new-object Shell32.ShellWrapper



How about this? Does not reset any permissions, works for all users and across all drives. I tested it on 2012 R2+

$dis = gwmi Win32_LogicalDisk -Filter 'DriveType=3' | select -ExpandProperty DeviceID
$rec = @()

foreach ($d in $dis)
    $rec += gci "$d\`$Recycle.Bin" -Force

foreach ($r in $rec)
    gci $r.FullName -Force -Recurse | rm -Force -Confirm:$false