Did it ever happen to you that while installing or uninstalling a program, the process suddenly failed? You try to retry it again but with no luck. How about the apps that install but have no option to uninstall themselves in Add/Remove Programs? This does not just happen with apps from indie developers but also from large corporations. Recently, I came across an app from a large laptop manufacturer which was pre-installed on their laptop. Upon removing the app using Add/Remove programs, it did not uninstall properly and thus I had to resort to using Windows Installer CleanUp Utility tool. It is a free tool that removes a program’s configuration information when you are experiencing Setup problems. This can also come handy when you are trying to uninstall a program and it gives “file missing” errors.
Another example is of Microsoft Office 2010. I have seen countless cases where Office 2010 failed to uninstall properly, thus the only way to install it again is to first uninstall the corrupted Office Setup files. Manually removing the directory in which the program is installed is fine, but that alone will not help. The solution is Windows Installer CleanUp Utility, which will remove any residue from the uninstallation process to make sure that you can install a clean version of Office 2010.
It is probably the most easy to use tool from Microsoft. Run it and it will display all installed software on your PC. If an application is listed under “Installed Products” but you have actually uninstalled it from your system or the it has failed to install properly, then it’s clear that this app must be removed. Select that application and click Remove.
Windows Installer Cleanup will also show you which application has been installed for which user on your PC. If an application has been installed for all users, then it will be shown as well. Please note that this tool must be used with extreme care. Double-check the program name before removing it. The process cannot be undone. It works on all versions of Windows.