Updated: April 17, 2012
Applies To: Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, Windows Server 2012, Windows 8
Deletes a directory. This command is the same as the rmdir command.
For examples of how to use this command, see Examples.
Specifies the location and the name of the directory that you want to delete. Path is required.
Deletes a directory tree (the specified directory and all its subdirectories, including all files).
Specifies quiet mode. Does not prompt for confirmation when deleting a directory tree. (Note that /q works only if /s is specified.)
Displays help at the command prompt.
You cannot delete a directory that contains files, including hidden or system files. If you attempt to do so, the following message appears:
The directory is not empty
Use the dir /a command to list all files (including hidden and system files). Then use the attrib command with -h to remove hidden file attributes, -s to remove system file attributes, or -h -s to remove both hidden and system file attributes. After the hidden and file attributes have been removed, you can delete the files.
If you insert a backslash (\) at the beginning of Path, Path will start at the root directory (regardless of the current directory).
You cannot use rd to delete the current directory. If you attempt to delete the current directory, the following error message appears:
The process cannot access the file because it is being used by another process.
If you receive this error message, you must change to a different directory (not a subdirectory of the current directory), and then use rd (specify Path if necessary).
The rd command, with different parameters, is available from the Recovery Console.
You cannot delete the directory that you are currently working in. You must change to a directory that is not within the current directory. For example, to change to the parent directory, type:
You can now safely remove the desired directory.
Use the /s option to remove a directory tree. For example, to remove a directory named Test (and all its subdirectories and files) from the current directory, type:
rd /s test
To run the previous example in quiet mode, type:
rd /s /q test
When you run rd /s in quiet mode, the entire directory tree is deleted without confirmation. Ensure that important files are moved or backed up before using the /q command-line option.