How to Uninstall Applications & Programs in Windows

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To uninstall applications in Windows, several methods are available, each suited for different types of applications and user preferences. Here’s a guide based on the latest information:

Uninstall from the Start Menu

This method is straightforward and best for quickly removing Windows Store apps:

  1. Click on the Start button.
  2. Scroll through the apps list or use the search bar to find the app you want to uninstall.
  3. Right-click on the app’s icon.
  4. Select Uninstall from the context menu.
  5. Confirm the uninstallation if prompted.

Note: Not all apps can be uninstalled this way. Some system apps are integral to Windows and do not offer an uninstall option.

Uninstall through Settings

For a more comprehensive view of all installed applications, including both Windows Store and desktop apps:

  1. Press Start and then choose Settings (gear icon).
  2. In the Settings menu, select Apps.
  3. Under Apps, click on Apps & features.
  4. A list of installed apps will appear. Scroll through or use the search function to find the app you want to remove.
  5. Click on the app, and select Uninstall.
  6. Follow any additional prompts to complete the uninstallation process.

This method provides more information about each app, like its size and installation date, which can be helpful for managing your device’s storage.

Uninstall using Control Panel

The Control Panel method is more traditional and is particularly useful for uninstalling non-Store applications:

  1. Type Control Panel in the search box on the taskbar and open it.
  2. In the Control Panel, select Programs > Programs and Features.
  3. A list of all installed programs will be displayed.
  4. Find the program you wish to uninstall, click on it to select it.
  5. Right-click and choose Uninstall or select Uninstall/Change from the options above the list.
  6. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the uninstallation.

This approach is especially effective for older programs and those not listed in the Settings app. It provides detailed information about each program, including the publisher, installation date, and size.

Using Windows Terminal

For advanced users, Windows Terminal offers command-line options for uninstalling software:

  1. Press Windows + X and select Windows Terminal (Admin) from the menu.
  2. To use Windows Package Manager (winget), type winget list to display all installed programs.
  3. Find the program you want to uninstall and type winget uninstall [Program Name]. Replace [Program Name] with the exact name of the application.
  4. For the Windows Management Instrumentation Command-line (WMIC), type wmic, then product get name to list installed programs.
  5. To uninstall a program using WMIC, type product where name="[Program Name]" call uninstall. Replace [Program Name] with the exact name of the program.
  6. Confirm the uninstallation by pressing the Y-key.

This method is effective for removing programs that might not be listed in the GUI-based uninstall options and provides more control to the user.

Task Manager Method

If a program is running and preventing uninstallation, using Task Manager can be an effective solution:

  1. Press CTRL + SHIFT + ESC to open Task Manager.
  2. Click on the Processes tab to view all running applications.
  3. Find and select the program you want to uninstall.
  4. Right-click on the program and choose End Task.
  5. After closing the program, attempt the uninstallation process again through the preferred method (e.g., Control Panel or Settings).

This method ensures that the program is not running in the background, which can sometimes interfere with the uninstallation process.

Safe Mode Uninstallation

Booting into Safe Mode can be helpful for uninstalling problematic programs:

  1. Restart your computer and press F8 (or the appropriate key for your system) to access the Advanced Boot Options.
  2. Select Safe Mode and press Enter.
  3. Once in Safe Mode, open the uninstallation method of your choice (Control Panel, Settings, etc.).
  4. Proceed with the uninstallation process as normal.

Safe Mode loads with a minimal set of drivers and can help remove programs that cause conflicts or errors during the standard uninstallation process.

Microsoft’s Install/Uninstall Troubleshooter

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Microsoft provides a troubleshooter to resolve issues with program installation or removal:

  1. Download the Microsoft Install/Uninstall troubleshooter.
  2. Run the troubleshooter and select the Advanced link for more options.
  3. Choose whether to apply repairs automatically or manually.
  4. Select Uninstalling when prompted about the problem you’re facing.
  5. Pick the problematic program from the list, or if not listed, choose Not Listed.
  6. Follow the on-screen instructions for troubleshooting and potential fixes.

This tool is particularly useful for addressing errors that occur during the uninstallation process and can provide detailed reports on issues encountered.

Third-Party Uninstallers

Several third-party uninstallers offer enhanced features for removing applications:

  • Generic Uninstallers: Tools like Revo Uninstaller and Geek Uninstaller can perform deep scans to remove leftover files and registry entries.
  • Specialized Uninstallers: Some programs come with their own uninstallers, which are often more effective at removing all components of the program.
  • Bulk Uninstallers: Certain third-party tools allow for the removal of multiple programs at once, which can save time.

While these tools can be more thorough, it’s important to use reputable software to avoid potential security risks.

System Restore

Using System Restore to revert your system to a previous state can remove recently installed programs:

  1. Open the System Restore tool from the Control Panel or by searching for it in the Start menu.
  2. Select a restore point created before the installation of the problematic software.
  3. Follow the instructions to restore your system to the selected point.

Note: This method will remove all programs and changes made after the selected restore point, so it should be used cautiously.

Remove Preinstalled Items

For removing apps that came preinstalled with Windows:

  • Start Menu Method: Right-click the app in the Start Menu and select Uninstall. This works for many, but not all, preinstalled apps.
  • Command Line Methods: Use PowerShell or Command Prompt for more advanced removals, especially for apps that don’t provide an uninstall option in the Start Menu.

These methods are helpful for customizing and decluttering your Windows installation by removing apps you don’t use.


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