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How to uninstall a program you cannot uninstall

Quick Facts:
Category: Computers | Software
Subcategory: Applications

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Sometimes there are programs that cannot be uninstalled easily due to many factors. For example programs like Nero or the Microsoft Office Suite as well as many antivirus can make you face this problem. This reason may be related to a structural file of the application that was erroneously deleted or to a malfunction in the uninstaller.

So in this little guide 'll show you solutions to this problem, in order to uninstall those stubborn applications.

What to do when you can't uninstall a Program

Windows Installer CleanUp Utility

The Microsoft uninstaller usually works fine, but sometimes if a problem shows up it can fail in the uninstalling process. If a MSP file is missing, you won't be able to uninstall or repair Microsoft Office (the MSP files are those related to the Windows Installer, or contain information about updates to installed applications, as well as the versions of the applications to which the updates are applicable).

You can solve this problem manually but it can be a really difficult task and if you don't know what are you doing you can even cause structural problems to Windows. That's why Microsoft released a special uninstaller for such cases, the Windows Installer CleanUp Utility.

It is really easy to use. It just features a list of programs and some buttons.  You just have to select the programs you want to uninstall then you press Remove and that's it; just give some time to the utility to remove the undesired applications. This uninstaller can remove the Office Suite up to the 2003 version. To remove the 2007 version you'll have to do it manually.

The link to the Windows Installer CleanUp Utility is: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/290301


AppRemover and antivirus uninstallers

For security reasons an antivirus must be hard to uninstall; otherwise any malicious program could take advantage of such a weakness. However, that may cause lots of troubles to users; even with the uninstaller working, there are always certain files of registry information that will remain in your hard disk, even after uninstalling the application. Those files can interfere or block the correct installation of other products, becoming a real headache.

Fortunately there is a useful application used to uninstall completely security programs; the AppRemover.

The AppRemover detects automatically the installed antivirus or antispyware and gives you the chance to remove it in just two steps. The number of recognized antivirus programs is really big. The link to download the AppRemover is: http://www.appremover.com

There are also specific applications to uninstall each of the different antivirus programs available. Here is the list to download them:


Uninstallers for other applications

There are also other applications difficult to uninstall. For example the Nero Suite has so many controllers and modules that when removed via the conventional uninstaller of the suite, there are always certain files that remain in your hard disk, thus its complete uninstallation becomes almost an impossible task to perform.

Fortunately there is a special uninstaller that can remove every component of the Nero Suite; the Nero Clean Tool.

The link to download theNero Clean Tool is: http://www.nero.com/enu/tools-utilities.html?NeroSID=784005c9813cd713f4a286a79aa11933

Other components of Windows that can make you face some troubles when trying to uninstall them are DirectX and Java and its remaining virtual machines, so here are their respective effective uninstallers:

DirectX effective uninstaller: DirectX Uninstaller

Java virtual machines uninstaller: Javara

In case you have a new computer with lots of trials, or they accidentally were installed when navigating on Internet; there is a little, but still powerful, program named Decrapifier, that helps you get rid of those annoying applications.

Here is the link to Decrapifier: http://www.pcdecrapifier.com/download

Revo Uninstaller

In case all the aforementioned uninstallers failed; there is a rather more hardcore remover which also checks the Windows Registry in order to find files or information related to the program you want to remove. Since it is a risky operation, Revo first creates a restoration backup of the system, just in case, before proceeding with uninstalling process. Anyway it is recommended to read the instructions or manual before using it; so use it carefully and at your own risk.

After removing a program with its own uninstaller, Revo will look for remaining files and information related to the application you want to get rid of. Once they are found, Revo shows them in the screen. Most of the time if a registry key containing an explicit reference to the program in question is found it is recommended to remove it. But attention, if you are not sure about its relationship with the application you want to uninstall do not delete it.

The link to download Revo Uninstaller is: http://www.revouninstaller.com/revo_uninstaller_free_download.html

I hope this information was useful; good luck.


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