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Windows 11, and Windows 10: Various methods to uninstall problematic Programs and Apps

Summary: This article takes you through several methods for removing stubborn Apps, Programs and Updates in the Windows 11, and Windows 10 operating system.

This article may have been automatically translated. If you have any feedback regarding its quality, please let us know using the form at the bottom of this page.

Article Content




Several methods for removing/uninstalling stubborn apps and programs in Windows 11, and Windows 10


Removing your unused programs and apps can make your computer run quicker and with fewer problems.

However certain programs and apps leave unwanted parts of themselves behind or do not uninstall. This is down to:

  • Programs that have become faulty.
  • Programs that share files with other programs.
  • Entries that write themselves into other programs and that run at a level that a common user cannot affect them.

I have listed 10 different methods to remove stubborn programs and fully remove those that are no longer of any use on your computer.

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Method I - Run the program manufacturers uninstall tool


Most third-party software now comes with a purpose-built uninstaller tool. This can commonly be found by going to the start menu and scrolling down the all programs list until you find the appropriate program or app. Open the folder, and the uninstaller is listed there. Double-click the uninstaller and follow the on-screen instructions.

Sometimes you need to open the Explorer program and go to the location of the program. The uninstaller is listed there as an .exe file. Again, double-click the file and follow the on-screen instructions.

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Method II - Run the uninstall from Control Panel


Use the uninstaller built into Windows 11, and Windows 10.

  1. Open the Start Menu.

  2. Click Settings.

  3. Click Apps

  4. Select Apps & features from the left-hand side menu.

  5. Select the Program or App that you want to uninstall from the list that appears.

  6. Click the uninstall button that shows under the selected program or app.

  7. Follow the on-screen instructions to complete the uninstall.

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Method III - Uninstall after closing program or app in Task Manager


Use the Task Manager built into Windows 11, and Windows 10.

  1. Press down the CTRL + SHIFT + ESC keys together to open the Task Manager.

  2. It should already be on the processes tab.

  3. Select the Program or App that you want to uninstall from the list under processes.

  4. Right click on the Program/App and select End Task

  5. Now try running the uninstall on the Program/App again.

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Method IV - Run the uninstall from Safe Mode


Boot the computer into safe mode and try running the uninstall from there:

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Method V - Run the Microsoft Install/Uninstall troubleshooter


Download the uninstall troubleshooter program from Microsoft:

  1. Open the troubleshooter program on the affected computer.

  2. Click the Advanced link on the window that opens.

  3. You can run the repairs automatically by clicking next, to be more specific clear the Apply repairs automatically box, then click next.

  4. Select uninstalling.

  5. Select the program that you are having trouble uninstalling from the list. (If it is not there, check for an entry marked Not Listed and select that instead.) Then click next.

  6. Follow the on-screen instructions.

    1. When it finishes, it gives the option to try uninstalling the program again.

    2. It tells you it could not identify the problem and that you can give feedback on the program and to close it. However, you can click the link View detailed information to receive a report.

    3. After clicking next on the report screen, it will take you to a screen. This is where you can select the repairs that you want to run on the program you want to uninstall. Ensure that the program is there, and the check box marked.

    4. Click next for it to run through these repairs.

    5. You should then get a report if this was successful or not.

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Method VI - Use a third-party Uninstaller


Using a search engine, you can usually find either a generic third-party removal tool, or one specific to the Program/App you are trying to uninstall.

Dell does not recommend using third-party software unless you are sure of the supplier and are confident in its use. These programs are often sources of infection to your computer or if used in an improper manner can cause system issues to occur on your computer.

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Method VII - Run System Restore


If you have enabled Restore Points on your computer, you can use System Restore. This method allows you to take your computer back to a previous date before the particular piece of software was installed. However, this does remove any other programs that are installed in that same period. You can find out more on the following link:

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Method VIII - Remove Preinstalled Items


You can right-click the App icon in the Start Menu and select uninstall.

However, if this is not available or does not work, you can also use Command Prompt or PowerShell which are Command Line Interfaces (CLI). Be aware Command Prompt and PowerShell are powerful tools and you can make changes which may affect your computer.

Dell does not recommend using a CLI unless you are experienced in its use. You may want to ensure you have a backup of your computer, before you start using commands in a tool like this.

  1. First you need to open the CLI with Administrator rights

    1. You can find this in the start menu.

    2. Alternatively, you can right-click the start menu button to open a power users' menu and select it from there.

    3. Or you can click the start menu and type Command Prompt, or PowerShell and select it from the list that appears.

  2. Enter the following command (Where AppName is the name of the App you want to remove.):

    Get-AppxPackage *AppName* | Remove-AppxPackage

  3. You can generate a list of AppNames by entering the following command:

    Get-AppxPackage | ft name, PackageFullName -AutoSize

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Method IX - Clean ghosts from the Control Panel


When using Control Panel, you may see references to Programs and Apps that are already uninstalled.

This is usually because there remains some part of the Program or App in the Registry. We do not recommend going into the Registry and deleting strings.

You can use a search engine to find a third-party registry cleaner to remove these leftover strings.

However as with any third-party software, you run the risk of infecting your computer.

Most Registry cleaners react to your anti-virus and conversely, so you need to be careful of what they quarantine or delete.

If you cannot identify what the string does, I would not recommend using a cleaner either. Deleting the wrong thing in the registry can cause system issues to your computer.

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Method X - Remove Problem Updates


You can uninstall recent windows update files from the Apps & features page of the Control Panel, as you would any Program or App.

For anything more serious I would recommend going through the article on the following link:

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Article Properties

Affected Product

G Series, Inspiron, Latitude, Vostro, XPS, Fixed Workstations

Last Published Date

12 Oct 2022



Article Type