# How to delete files from a folder using a list of file names in windows?

i have a folder with 2K+ files in it, i need to delete around 200, i have a txt file with all the file names i need removed ordered in a list, how do i remove the specific files from the folder using the list? (OS is windows 7)

## 5 Answers

Simple way is copy the txt file to a file called mydel.bat in the directory of the files to delete. Using an editor like Microsoft Word edit this file. Do a global replace on Newline normally ^p in Word. Replace it with space/f^pdelspace. This will change

File1.bin
File20.bin
File21.bin


to (with /f for "force delete read-only files"):

File1.bin /f
del File20.bin /f
del File21.bin /f
del


Edit the fist line to add the del space and delete the last line.

Run the batch command.

• Apart from the /Y switch, which apparently doesn't work in win7 del command, this worked quite well .. thanks Nov 9 '11 at 19:14
• That's probably supposed to be /f for "force delete read-only files" instead of /y. Nov 9 '11 at 19:55
• Correct afrazier. I was mixing up the /Y which works with XCOPY and one or two other DOS programs to 'Suppress prompting to confirm action' Nov 10 '11 at 7:09
• In editors who know how to do find/replace with regex, such as Notepad++, you would need to replace "^" with "del " and "$" with " /f", where ^ represents the beginning of each row and$ - the end. Jan 10 '18 at 19:41

Type this on the command line, substituting your file for files_to_delete.txt:

for /f %i in (files_to_delete.txt) do del %i


A version of this suitable to include in .cmd files (double %%) and able to deal with spaces in file names:

for /f "delims=" %%f in (files_to_delete.txt) do del "%%f"

• This actually deleted the file list instead of the files themselves ... i had to create the list again :| Nov 9 '11 at 19:11
• My deepest apologies. I forgot the /f flag. Nov 9 '11 at 19:40
• That's pretty nifty, I didn't know the command line supported loops like that. Care to write a blog post for the SU blog about this and other intricacies of the command line? Nov 9 '11 at 22:11
• @Ivo: You might want to take a look at computerhope.com/batch.htm or superuser.com/questions/tagged/batch to learn more. Like Unix, much of what can be done in scripts (batch files) can also be done directly from the command-line. Nov 9 '11 at 22:50
• I created a bat file and copied the 2nd example: result: the files_to_delete.txt is still removed. (even with the /f flag)
– bvdb
Jul 27 '16 at 7:29

Using PowerShell:

Get-Content c:\path\to\list.txt | Remove-Item

• Wow, that's way more readable than batch. Nov 15 '11 at 15:14
• For future readers... I had to change the pipe operator to a > to make this work. I.e. Get-Content c:\path\to\list.txt > Remove-Item ... I had full UNC paths in my list.txt. Hope this helps. Apr 11 '17 at 21:43
• @NateJ I tried using the > and it just created a file for me, instead of deleting things. Nov 30 '17 at 14:47
• @BrianJ hmm, I’ll have to check back on what I did.. good catch. Nov 30 '17 at 19:59

I imagine it can be done with powershell.

Knowing Perl, I tend to use it for this sort of thing

perl -l -n -e "unlink" filenames.txt


First method works after some changes:

1. open Notepad
2. copy all file names with extension which need to be deleted after adding del at the beginning like

del File1.bin
del File20.bin
del File21.bin

3. save the file as xyz.bat in the same folder

4. run the file
• ...the text file in the question has about 200 file names in it. Why add del manually like you're proposing, while solutions were already posted to automate it? As an aside: any sane editor would have some support for searching and replace including line endings (or line starts, using regular expressions), macros, or for block or column mode editing (often initiated by holding down Option or Alt and then selecting a block, after which one can just type on multiple lines at once). May 21 '15 at 6:56