Starting with Windows 95, a simulated garbage can used for deleting files and folders. The recycle bin keeps the files intact in case the user wants to restore them, but can be "emptied" from time to time to save disk space.
Drag and Drop
The icon of a file or folder is dragged to the recycle bin and released. Microsoft introduced the recycle bin as a humorous attempt at being politically correct for the 1990s instead of the trash can metaphor used in the Mac. See trash can