To add, remove, or change a program on a Windows 2000-based
computer, use the Add/Remove Programs tool in Control Panel. Occasionally, a program
may not be uninstalled completely and a reference to the program may remain in
the Currently installed programs dialog box. Changing or removing a program may
result in a number of messages about files that cannot be located, but are needed to
complete the change or uninstallation. This article describes how to remove these
invalid entries from the Add/Remove Programs tool.
For information about how to edit the registry, view the "Changing
Keys and Values" Help topic in Registry Editor (Regedit.exe) or the "Add and Delete
Information in the Registry" and "Edit Registry Data" Help topics in Regedt32.exe.
Note that you should back up the registry before you edit it. If you are running
Windows NT or Windows 2000, you should also update your Emergency Repair Disk
The following steps remove only the registry entries related to a
program as it appears in the Add/Remove Programs tool. To completely uninstall a
program that was not completely removed by clicking the Change/Remove button in the
Add/Remove Programs tool, you need to clean up the physical directory structure on
disk and in the registry also. Use extreme caution when you perform either of these
Start Registry Editor (Regedit.exe).
Locate the following key:
Locate the key to be deleted by locating the key name created by
the program. If the name of the key is not apparent, browse through each key and
note the value for DisplayName. This is the viewable string in the Add/Remove
Using the Registry menu, export the selected registry key to
make a backup. Store the .reg file in a safe location in case you need to import it
at a later date.
Delete the selected registry key and its values. Do not delete
the entire Uninstall key.
Quit Registry Editor.
Verify that the reference in the Add/Remove Programs tool is no
You may have to contact the manufacturer of the program you want
to remove if you need to clean up the disk and registry entries. The above procedure
does not remove all the files and registry entries used by the program, it removes
only the reference in the Add/Remove Programs tool.