I recently installed an instance of Windows Server 2012 although I suspect that this also applies to other versions of Windows Server.

In the case of Windows Server 2012, the OS has the start screen with a bunch of icons (File Explorer, This PC, etc.) - however, Recycle Bin is not one of these icons. Instead, Recycle Bin retains it's lonely spot on the desktop.

Whether placed on the start menu OR start screen OR the desktop, the aforementioned icons have one thing in common: they cannot be deleted.

Why is it that Recycle Bin sits by itself on the desktop while the rest of these don't?

  • 1
    We could only guess as to Microsoft's rationale. Oct 9, 2015 at 3:50
  • Users need to be able to drag stuff onto the recycle bin, which wouldn't work on the start screen. However, who knows why they didn't put any other icons on the desktop? The assumption that there must be a good design reason behind their decisions is not warranted, in my opinion.
    – user31143
    Oct 9, 2015 at 4:43
  • 2
    Why is the question bound to be closed because teh answer is supposed to be cosidered "primarily opinion based" when there are lots of technical documents explaining the answer?
    – Devin
    Oct 9, 2015 at 15:35
  • 1
    I don't think this question should be placed on hold. Valid question, that may have a valid/ facts driven result.
    – Stanley VM
    Oct 9, 2015 at 18:34

1 Answer 1


Actually, there's a lot of literature about this feature and its rationale, which is basically to allow better access to Windows Server 2008 Recycle Bin feature. See an excerpt from Active Directory Recycle Bin

Windows Server 2008 R2 introduced the first Active Directory Recycle Bin. With it, you can restore a user, computer, or organizational unit (OU) account that has been accidentally deleted. However, you must use Windows PowerShell to work with the Active Directory Recycle Bin. Using PowerShell commands to search for and restore a deleted object can be difficult, especially if you're not familiar with PowerShell. And when you want to search for an object, you're limited in what you can search on. (....)

These challenges were presented to the appropriate Microsoft Product Groups. Based on this feedback, they made the Active Directory Recycle Bin part of the Active Directory Administrative Center in Windows Server 2012. As you'll see, setting up and using the Active Directory Recycle Bin just got a whole lot easier.

Also Dell has a quite complete article The Windows Server 2012 Recycle Bin and Recovery Manager for Active Directory and technical documentation here

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