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Remove-Item

Published: February 29, 2012

Updated: August 15, 2012

Applies To: Windows PowerShell 2.0, Windows PowerShell 3.0

Remove-Item

Deletes the specified items.

Aliases

The following abbreviations are aliases for this cmdlet:

  • del, erase, rd, ri, rm, rmdir

Syntax

Parameter Set: Path
Remove-Item [-Path] <String[]> [-Credential <PSCredential> ] [-Exclude <String[]> ] [-Filter <String> ] [-Force] [-Include <String[]> ] [-Recurse] [-Confirm] [-WhatIf] [-UseTransaction] [ <CommonParameters>]

Parameter Set: LiteralPath
Remove-Item -LiteralPath <String[]> [-Credential <PSCredential> ] [-Exclude <String[]> ] [-Filter <String> ] [-Force] [-Include <String[]> ] [-Recurse] [-Confirm] [-WhatIf] [-UseTransaction] [ <CommonParameters>]




Detailed Description

The Remove-Item cmdlet deletes one or more items. Because it is supported by many providers, it can delete many different types of items, including files, directories, registry keys, variables, aliases, and functions.

Parameters

-Credential<PSCredential>

Specifies a user account that has permission to perform this action. The default is the current user.

Type a user name, such as "User01" or "Domain01\User01", or enter a PSCredential object, such as one generated by the Get-Credential cmdlet. If you type a user name, you will be prompted for a password.

This parameter is not supported by any providers installed with Windows PowerShell.


Aliases

none

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

true (ByPropertyName)

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-Exclude<String[]>

Omits the specified items. The value of this parameter qualifies the Path parameter. Enter a path element or pattern, such as "*.txt". Wildcards are permitted.


Aliases

none

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

true

-Filter<String>

Specifies a filter in the provider's format or language. The value of this parameter qualifies the Path parameter. The syntax of the filter, including the use of wildcards, depends on the provider. Filters are more efficient than other parameters, because the provider applies them when retrieving the objects, rather than having Windows PowerShell filter the objects after they are retrieved.


Aliases

none

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

true

-Force

Allows the cmdlet to remove items that cannot otherwise be changed, such as hidden or read-only files or read-only aliases or variables. The cmdlet cannot remove constant aliases or variables. Implementation varies from provider to provider. For more information, see about_Providers. Even using the Force parameter, the cmdlet cannot override security restrictions.


Aliases

none

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

False

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-Include<String[]>

Deletes only the specified items. The value of this parameter qualifies the Path parameter. Enter a path element or pattern, such as "*.txt". Wildcards are permitted.


Aliases

none

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

true

-LiteralPath<String[]>

Specifies a path to the items being removed. Unlike Path, the value of LiteralPath is used exactly as it is typed. No characters are interpreted as wildcards. If the path includes escape characters, enclose it in single quotation marks. Single quotation marks tell Windows PowerShell not to interpret any characters as escape sequences.


Aliases

PSPath

Required?

true

Position?

named

Default Value

None

Accept Pipeline Input?

true (ByValue, ByPropertyName)

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-Path<String[]>

Specifies a path to the items being removed. Wildcards are permitted. The parameter name ("-Path") is optional.


Aliases

none

Required?

true

Position?

1

Default Value

none

Accept Pipeline Input?

true (ByValue, ByPropertyName)

Accept Wildcard Characters?

true

-Recurse

Deletes the items in the specified locations and in all child items of the locations.

When it is used with the Include parameter, the Recurse parameter might not delete all child directories or all child items. This is a known issue; as a workaround, try piping results of the Get-ChildItem -Recurse cmdlet into the Remove-Item cmdlet, as described in Example 4 in this topic.


Aliases

none

Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

False

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-Confirm

Prompts you for confirmation before running the cmdlet.


Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

false

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-WhatIf

Shows what would happen if the cmdlet runs. The cmdlet is not run.


Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

false

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

-UseTransaction

Includes the command in the active transaction. This parameter is valid only when a transaction is in progress. For more information, see about_Transactions


Required?

false

Position?

named

Default Value

false

Accept Pipeline Input?

false

Accept Wildcard Characters?

false

<CommonParameters>

This cmdlet supports the common parameters: -Verbose, -Debug, -ErrorAction, -ErrorVariable, -OutBuffer, and -OutVariable. For more information, see  about_CommonParameters (http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/p/?LinkID=113216).

Inputs

The input type is the type of the objects that you can pipe to the cmdlet.

  • System.String

    You can pipe a string that contains a path (but not a literal path) to Remove-Item.


Outputs

The output type is the type of the objects that the cmdlet emits.

  • None

    This cmdlet does not return any output.


Notes

  • You can also refer to Remove-Item by any of its built-in aliases, "del", "erase", "rmdir", "rd", "ri", or "rm". For more information, see about_Aliases.

    The Remove-Item cmdlet is designed to work with the data exposed by any provider. To list the providers available in your session, type "Get-PsProvider". For more information, see about_Providers.

Examples

-------------------------- EXAMPLE 1 --------------------------

This command deletes all of the files with names that include a dot (.) from the C:\Test directory. Because the command specifies a dot, the command does not delete directories or files with no file name extension.


PS C:\> remove-item C:\Test\*.*

-------------------------- EXAMPLE 2 --------------------------

This command deletes from the current directory all files with a .doc file name extension and a name that does not include "1". It uses the wildcard character (*) to specify the contents of the current directory. It uses the Include and Exclude parameters to specify the files to delete.


PS C:\> remove-item * -include *.doc -exclude *1*

-------------------------- EXAMPLE 3 --------------------------

This command deletes a file that is both hidden and read-only. It uses the Path parameter to specify the file. It uses the Force parameter to give permission to delete it. Without Force, you cannot delete read-only or hidden files.


PS C:\> remove-item -path C:\Test\hidden-RO-file.txt -force

-------------------------- EXAMPLE 4 --------------------------

This command deletes all of the CSV files in the current directory and all subdirectories recursively.

Because the Recurse parameter in the Remove-Item cmdlet has a known issue (it might not delete all child directories or files, especially if the Include parameter is added to the command), the command in this example uses the Get-ChildItem cmdlet to get the desired files, and then uses the pipeline operator to pass them to the Remove-Item cmdlet.

In the Get-ChildItem command, the Path parameter has a value of *, which represents the contents of the current directory. It uses the Include parameter to specify the CSV file type, and it uses the Recurse parameter to make the retrieval recursive.

If you try to specify the file type in the path, such as "-path *.csv", the cmdlet interprets the subject of the search to be a file that has no child items, and Recurse fails.


PS C:\> get-childitem * -include *.csv -recurse | remove-item

-------------------------- EXAMPLE 5 --------------------------

This command deletes the OldApp registry key and all of its subkeys and values. It uses the Remove-Item cmdlet to remove the key. The path is specified, but the optional parameter name (Path) is omitted.

The Recurse parameter deletes all of the contents of the OldApp key recursively. If the key contains subkeys and you omit the Recurse parameter, you are prompted to confirm that you want to delete the contents of the key.


PS C:\> remove-item hklm:\software\mycompany\OldApp -recurse

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