How to Delete Site Collection using PowerShell in SharePoint?

Requirement: Delete a SharePoint Site.

How to delete a site collection in SharePoint?

When you delete a site collection in SharePoint, all sites including the top-level site and subsite underneath, and all data present in the site collection, all user information in the site collection gets deleted. To delete any SharePoint site collection, You can use either the SharePoint Central Administration site or PowerShell. To delete a site collection in Central Administration, navigate to:

  • SharePoint 2013 Central Administration >> Application Management 
  • Click on Delete a site collection link under the Site Collections group
    how to delete site collection powershell
  • Select the site collection to delete
    delete site collection powershell sharepoint 2013
  • Click on the Delete button to delete a site collection in SharePoint.
    powershell script to delete a site collection

Delete host-named site collection with PowerShell
Host-named site collections can be managed only through PowerShell! Central Admin doesn’t offer the provision to delete Host named site collections as it offers for Path-based sites. The following are some examples of deleting SharePoint 2013/2010 site collections using PowerShell.

Delete site collection through PowerShell

To delete site collection in SharePoint 2013 using PowerShell, use Remove-SPSite cmdlet.

Remove-SPSite -Identity "<Site-Collection-URL>" 


Remove-SPSite -Identity "" 

Remove-SPSite cmdlet with -GradualDelete switch:

The -GradualDelete parameter instructs to delete the site collection gradually, instead of consuming all system resources to delete the site collection instantly in a single stretch. This reduces the load on the system when deleting large site collections.

Remove-SPSite -Identity "Site-collection-URL" -GradualDelete

Force delete SharePoint site collection with PowerShell

If you face any difficulty in deleting SharePoint site collection either from Central Admin or with PowerShell, you can force delete site collection from the content database as:

#Get the site collection to delete
$Site = Get-SPSite http://site-collection-url

#Get the content database of the site collection
$SiteContentDB = $site.ContentDatabase 

#Force delete site collection
$SiteContentDB.ForceDeleteSite($Site.Id, $false, $false)

This deletes the orphaned site collection SharePoint with PowerShell.

If you delete a site collection Remove-SPDeletedSite cmdlet or force delete a site collection with $GradualDelete parameter to $True, Then you’ll not be able to recover it using Restore-SPDeletedSite cmdlet! (You need content database backup instead!)

Bulk delete site collections with PowerShell in SharePoint

How about bulk deleting multiple site collections? Say, You want to delete all site collections under the given managed path: /Sites?

Get-SPSite "*" -Limit ALL | Remove-SPSite -Confirm:$false

PowerShell to delete all site collections under a web application:

If you don’t want to send your SharePoint sites to recycle bin and would like to remove them permanently, use:

#Web Application URL

#Get Each site collection and delete
Get-SPWebApplication $WebAppURL | Get-SPSite -Limit ALL | Remove-SPSite -Confirm:$false

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Salaudeen Rajack

Salaudeen Rajack is a SharePoint Architect with Two decades of SharePoint Experience. He loves sharing his knowledge and experiences with the SharePoint community, through his real-world articles!

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