What Happens If You Delete System32?

By John Adebimitan

You may have heard that you need to delete the System32 folder on your Windows system to speed it up. Well, you shouldn’t believe that because deleting the folder does something entirely different for your computer.

This article will help you understand what happens if you delete the System32 folder from your computer. You will also learn about things to do in case you unknowingly delete the System32 folder from your computer.

What Is System32? – And How Important It Is To Your Computer

The System32 folder is an essential system folder that is necessary for smoothly running Windows 10. This folder contains almost all the files that makeup Windows.

As such, one could call the System32 folder Windows itself.

When you look at it, Windows is a collection of programs that make up a large and complex system. Meanwhile, those programs that make up the system are made up of files.

The majority of those files are located in the System32 folder. Hence, the System32 folder is the core part that makes up Windows.

Whenever you run programs like Control Panel, Disk Management, PowerShell, Task Manager, and many more, you run them from the System32 folder.

What Happens If You Delete System32?

If you delete the System32 folder from your computer, it will begin to malfunction slowly. You will suddenly be unable to open or run specific functions.

They either won’t open up, or you may receive error alerts when trying to run some programs. In addition, you will notice your entire system’s programs slowly falling apart, one function or program at a time. 

After deleting System32, you will also be unable to shut down your computer. Instead, you will only be able to force close the computer.

You won’t also be able to reboot the computer since you’ve deleted 90% of the operating system.

In simple terms, deleting the System32 folder won’t allow your computer to function correctly, and you won’t be able to boot your computer after turning it off.

Now that you know what happens if you delete the System32 folder, you shouldn’t attempt to delete it.

Some Pros and Cons Of The System32 and Why You’d Want To Uninstall It…Or Not

In this section, we will discuss the pros and cons of System 32. We also consider if it is advisable to uninstall the System 32 folder.


The System32 folder is an essential part of your Windows. It contains many important system files that ensure your computer runs smoothly without any issues.

Since it stores most of the important Windows files, it can maintain the normal functioning of Windows. Some of the files the System32 folder stores include the Control Panel applets, MS-DOS applications, DAT files, and many more.

Furthermore, programs like the Command Prompt, Control Panel, Calculator, PowerShell, Task Manager, etc., all run from the System32 directory.

Some third-party programs like Dropbox service DbxSvc.exe. can also put files into the System32 folder.

Another thing is that the System32 holds some subfolders containing configurations for  Windows Registry files and drivers.

To round off, the System 32 folder is what enables you to run most files or programs on your computer.


Though the System32 folder cannot be a virus that corrupts your system, it is very prone to hosting virus attacks. There are viruses designed to look like the System32 folder.

These viruses are known as “System File Replicators” or “File Replicators.” They can easily mimic other essential files on your computer and thus cause your computer to malfunction.

In some cases, they can also cause boot issues.

Though the System32 folder is very susceptible to malware attacks, you shouldn’t delete it. Deleting the System32 folder is not a recommended action.

If you think the System32 folder has been infected with malware, the more advisable course of action is to use a software cleaning method. You can do that by running a malware scan or repairing Windows.

However, if you discover that the System32 folder is too infected for repair, you should reinstall Windows.

Is System32 A Virus? Everything You Need To Know

No, the System32 folder is not a virus. However, the folder can host a virus within your computer system.

When a virus gets into your computer system, the first system it is likely to attack is the System32 folder since it contains important data. Due to this reason, cybercriminals use the System32 folder name to create computer viruses and other malware.

Such viruses are called “System File Replicators” or “File Replicators.” They can replicate essential system files on your computer and then cause performance issues and boot issues on your computer.

They will make those essential system files unusable and then corrupt your entire system to prevent you from accessing most parts. In such cases, these corrupted files will replace the necessary files for booting your Windows.

Eventually, your computer will not be able to recognize any command.

The unfortunate thing about these viruses is that you cannot delete them normally. Instead, you will need to use special antimalware programs to delete them.

However, if you notice that the virus has penetrated too deep into your system, you should reinstall Windows.

How To Delete System32 On Windows 10 and 11

We wouldn’t recommend that you delete the System32 folder from your computer because of the damages the action can cause to your computer. However, it may be helpful for you to know how to delete the folder so that you don’t delete it by mistake.

The good news, though, is that the chances of you deleting the folder by mistake are very low. But on the other hand, it will take a lot of effort and knowledge to navigate through all the advanced settings and figure out how to delete the folder.

Follow this process to delete System32 on Windows 10 and 11:

  • STEP 1: Go to the System32 folder and select the files you want to delete.
  • STEP 2: Right-click and select “Properties.”
  • STEP 3: Click on Advanced in the Properties window.
  • STEP 4: When your computer opens the Advanced Security Settings window, click the “Change” button next to the “TrustedInstaller.”
  • STEP 5:  Enter your user account’s username into the “Enter the object name to select” textbox. You can enter the email of your Microsoft account if you are using a Microsoft account.
  • STEP 6: Click “OK”
  • STEP 7: Click “OK” again to save the changes.
  • STEP 8: Go back to the “File Properties” window and then click on the “Edit” button next to the prompt that says, “To change permissions, click Edit.”
  • STEP 9: When you get to the permission window, select “Administrators”
  • STEP 10: Click on the checkbox for “Full control.”
  • STEP 11: Click “OK” to save the changes.
  • STEP 12: Once you’ve completed the above steps, you will now be able to delete files in the System32 folder.

What To Do If You Delete System32 and Your System Stats Malfunctioning – Tips To Try

If you delete the System32 folder from your computer and it starts malfunctioning, the best thing you can do is to reinstall Windows. But before doing that, you can first try recovering your data using data recovery software.


With all the information we’ve provided in this article, you should now know what happens if you delete System32 from your computer. You shouldn’t resort to deleting the System32 folder as a solution whenever your computer is infected by viruses or bothered by other issues.

Instead, you should seek help from professionals. 

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