Do you know there is a Recycle Bin on an external drive? Additionally, do you know how to recover files from an external hard drive’s Recycle Bin? This MiniTool post will tell you how to access the Recycle Bin on an external drive and how to recover data from it.

Just like the Recycle Bin we find on the Windows Desktop, an external hard drive has its own Recycle Bin actually. Files you deleted from an external drive will be sent here and you can recover them if they are not supposed to be removed.

How to Access Recycle Bin on an External Hard Drive

Similar to other system files, Recycle Bin on an external hard drive is hidden by default. You can modify settings to make it visible.  

$RECYCLE.BIN folder on an external drive is used to collect deleted files, performing the function like Recycle Bin. Here are easy steps for you to find the Recycle Bin.

Step 1: You should first connect your external hard drive to the computer, then double-click on the Folder icon to open File Explorer.

Step 2: Choose the target drive. If your external drive is divided into several partitions, you can choose any of them. Change to the View tab on the top toolbar and click on Options.

choose Options

Step 3: Select the View tab. You should enable Show hidden files, folders, and drives and disable Hide protected operating system files (Recommended).

change settings

Step 4: Click Apply and OK to apply this change and close the window.

Now, you can open the disk and find the $RECYCLE.BIN folder becomes visible.

Can You Delete the $RECYCLE.BIN Folder?

You can delete the $RECYCLE.BIN folder for sure. This folder is to your external hard drive what the Recycle Bin is to your computer. It will take up too much space due to numerous deleted files. You can empty the files to free up space on your external drive. It will be recreated the next time you delete files for Windows users.

To empty the Recycle Bin, try these steps:

Step 1. Follow the above steps to show the Recycle Bin.

Step 2. Double-click to open the $RECYCLE.BIN folder and open Recycle Bin.

Step 3. Choose Empty Recycle Bin on the top toolbar.

empty Recycle Bin

Step 4. You will be asked whether to permanently delete these files. Choose Yes to confirm.

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How to Recover Data from an External Hard Drive

Recover Files from Recycle Bin on an External Drive

It is easy for you to recover files by using the Recycle Bin on the external drive. You can just open the Recycle Bin, look for your wanted files, and click on the Restore option to recover the deleted files.

However, you possibly fail to find needed files or mistakenly delete the $RECYCLE.BIN folder which will erase your files from the external hard drive permanently. Then how can you recover files in this situation? You can move on to the next method.

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Is it possible to recover deleted files from the Recycle Bin? Absolutely yes. This post tells you useful methods to achieve the goal.

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Recover Files with MiniTool Power Data Recovery

MiniTool Power Data Recovery is specifically designed by MiniTool Solutions to protect and recover your files. With it, you can easily recover lost files under various situations, like mistaken deletion, device corruption, partition loss, and more. This free file recovery software not only works well on external hard drive recovery but also helps in CF card recovery, USB drive recovery, etc.

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Bottom Line

Every drive has its own Recycle Bin but is always hidden. You can change settings to make it visible and use it to restore important files. This post shows you a simple guide to accessing Recycle Bin on an external drive. Hope you get useful information here.

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