In this simple and quick article, you’ll learn how to delete a file or directory in Java. The article demonstrates two ways of deleting a File -

import java.io.IOException;
import java.nio.file.*;

public class DeleteFileExample {
    public static void main(String[] args) throws IOException {
        // File or Directory to be deleted
        Path path = Paths.get("./demo.txt");

        try {
            // Delete file or directory
            Files.delete(path);
            System.out.println("File or directory deleted successfully");
        } catch (NoSuchFileException ex) {
            System.out.printf("No such file or directory: %s\n", path);
        } catch (DirectoryNotEmptyException ex) {
            System.out.printf("Directory %s is not empty\n", path);
        } catch (IOException ex) {
            System.out.println(ex);
        }
    }
}

There is another method deleteIfExists(Path) that deletes the file, but it doesn’t throw an exception if the file doesn’t exist.

// Delete file or directory if it exists
boolean isDeleted = Files.deleteIfExists(path);
if(isDeleted) {
    System.out.println("File deleted successfully");
} else {
    System.out.println("File doesn't exist");
}

Delete File in Java using File.delete method - JDK 6

You can use the delete() method of java.io.File class to delete a file or directory. Here is an example:

import java.io.File;

public class DeleteFileExample1 {
    public static void main(String[] args) {
        // File to be deleted
        File file = new File("foo.txt");

        // Delete file
        boolean isDeleted = file.delete();

        if(isDeleted) {
            System.out.println("File deleted successfully");
        } else {
            System.out.println("File doesn't exist");
        }
    }
}

Note that, you can delete an empty directory using the same approach as discussed in the above examples. But if you want to delete a non-empty directory recursively then check out this article -

How to delete a directory recursively with all its subdirectories and files in Java