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Delete and restore files in Google Drive

Put a file in trash

To remove a file from your Drive, you can put it in your trash. Your file will stay there until you empty your trash.

If you're the owner of the file, others can view it until you permanently delete the file. If you're not the owner, others can see the file even if you empty your trash.

  1. On your Android phone or tablet, open the Google Drive app.
  2. Next to the file you want to delete, tap More More.
  3. Tap Remove Remove.

Empty your trash

You can permanently delete an individual file or empty your entire trash. After deleting a file, anyone you've shared the file with will lose access to it. If you want others to be able to still view the file, you can give ownership to someone else.

  1. In the upper left, tap Menu Menu.
  2. Tap Trash.
  3. Next to the file you'd like to delete, tap More More.
  4. Tap Delete forever.

Empty your entire trash

  1. In the upper left, tap Menu Menu.
  2. Tap Trash.
  3. Make sure that there are no files that you'll want later.
  4. In the top right, tap More More.
  5. Tap Empty trash.

Recover a file from trash

If you put a file in your trash but decide that you still want it, you can put it back in your Drive.

  1. In the upper left, tap Menu Menu.
  2. Tap Trash.
  3. Next to the file you'd like to save, tap More More.
  4. Tap Restore.

Note: If you're not the owner of the file, contact the owner to have them restore it.

If you delete a file and need to get it back, contact a Drive specialist. For the fastest way to find your file, we highly recommend that you call or chat with us.

To contact us, sign in to your Google Account.

 
 

Evan is a Docs & Drive expert and author of this help page. Leave him feedback below about the page.

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