How to Remove the Recycling Bin


Most icons can be removed from the desktop by right-clicking on them and selecting \"Delete.\" The Recycling Bin icon however does not have a quick two-click removal process. This is to prevent accidental deletion of the icon. If there was a “delete” option on the right-click menu, many users may assume this means to delete items from the recycle bin. Deleting a program icon accidentally can be repaired, but an inexperienced user who deletes the recycle bin icon would have difficulty restoring it. Regardless, there are methods available to remove this icon from your desktop.

How to Remove the Recycling Bin in Windows XP

  • Click on “Start” and go to “Run.”

  • Type in the open box “regedit” (without quotes) and then press the “OK” button.

  • Go to the following registry location by expanding each of the folders within the address:


  • Look in the right-hand side for the DWORD: {645FF040-5081-101B-9F08-00AA002F954E}

    Right-click in a blank space if you do not see this DWORD and select “New > DWORD Value” and paste the above DWORD into the name box.

  • Right-click on the DWORD and select “Modify.” Change the value from “0” to “1.” You may then close registry editor and once you restart your computer the recycle bin icon will be gone from the desktop.

How to Remove the Recycling Bin in Windows Vista and 7

  • Click on “Start” and type “gpedit.msc” (without quotes) in the Search box.

  • Click on the \"gpedit.msc\" program in the search results. This will open your group policy editor.

  • Click on “User Configuration > Administrative Templates > Desktop.”

  • Scroll through the list on the right-hand pane until you see “Remove Recycle Bin from Desktop.” Right-click on it and select “Edit.”

  • Look under the “Remove Recycle Bin Icon from desktop” options. Click the box that says “Enabled.” This will enable the group policy to prevent the icon from displaying. Restart your computer for the change to take effect.


  • Photo Credit recycle bin image by feisty from
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