We have already shown you how flexible the Linux shell can be, but that’s not to say Windows is any further behind. Here’s two techniques you can use depending on your shell preference, cmd or PowerShell.

PowerShell 3

Get-ChildItem –Path  “C:\Backups” –Recurse | Where-Object CreationTime –lt (Get-Date).AddDays(-5) | Remove-Item

PowerShell 2

Get-ChildItem –Path  “C:\Backups” –Recurse | Where-Object{$_.CreationTime –lt (Get-Date).AddDays(-5)} | Remove-Item


  • Firstly we get FileInfo and DirectoryInfo objects in the Path C:\Backups.
  • FileInfo and DirectoryInfo objects both contain a CreationTime property, so we can filter the collection using that.
  • The –lt (less than) operator is then used to compare the CreationTime property of the objects with Get-Date (the current date) subtract 5 days.
  • This then leaves us with a collection of objects that were created more than 5 days ago, which we pass to Remove-Item.

Pro Tip

To see what will be removed you can use the –WhatIf parameter:

Get-ChildItem –Path  “C:\Backups” –Recurse | Where-Object CreationTime –lt (Get-Date).AddDays(-5) | Remove-Item –WhatIf

Command Prompt

While we recommend you use one of the PowerShell methods, without getting into any of the gritty details you can also do it from command prompt.

forfiles -p "C:\Backups" -s -m *.* -d -5 -c "cmd /c del @path"

Pro Tip

To see what files are going to be deleted you can use echo.

forfiles -p "C:\Backups" -s -m *.* -d -5 -c "cmd /c echo @file"

Taylor Gibb Taylor Gibb
Taylor Gibb is a professional software developer with nearly a decade of experience. He served as Microsoft Regional Director in South Africa for two years and has received multiple Microsoft MVP (Most Valued Professional) awards. He currently works in R&D at Derivco International.
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