Solved Why is not a good idea to delete a program manually?

Stuckfree

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What are the disadvantage and advantage manually delete a program?
 

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Shadowjk

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The disadvantages completely outweigh the benefits of uninstalling applications manually. Firstly being that it will cost you a lot of time to complete such task fully since every little registry key and file needs to be removed. Also the second issue comes with knowing what files and folders to delete. Manually uninstalling an application is not as simple as deleting the program files in your C:\ since many applications have registry entries to help with the functionality of the application or to add specific shortcuts within Windows. The only people that know where an application is installed are the developers. In theory it is possible for them to tell you what files and registry entries need to be removed however it would be more easier for them to create a separate process to complete it for the user (Uninstaller).

In short terms, Yes you can do it but the risk of running into problems and not being able to recover from them are heightened and unless you have a specific need to do so I would always uninstall from Control panel and run an uninstall .exe from the developer to completely remove the program since they are the ones who made the application. Either way you will have removed the application so for a user I would take the easier and stress free route of using the uninstaller.

Hope This Helps,
Josh! :)
 

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MilesAhead

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The exception I would note are small programs designed not to leave a footprint behind. As example, most of my AHK programs use an .ini file in the same folder as the exe for settings. They don't create Registry keys. For these, stopping the program and deleting it's containing folder are sufficient. Well, there is no uninstaller so you're kind of stuck with manual. :)
 

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LMiller7

Power User
I agree with Shadowjk completely. You are on dangerous ground when you attempt to manually delete an installed application.

But there will be times when manual intervention is necessary after running the uninstaller. For a variety of reasons the uninstaller may not be able to fully remove an application. There are other situations where the developer of the uninstaller chooses not to remove some element of the application. This always brings down criticism but there are cases where it is justified. In any event, it happens.

But you had better know what you are doing.
 

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whs

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Use the advanced option of the Revo Uninstaller. That will give you best results.
 

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MilesAhead

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To add to Miller7's point, some installers will not delete data files created by the program. Inno Setup is designed this way. If Inno puts it on, it will delete it during uninstall. But files created by the app are left with the idea you may want to update the app while preserving the data.
 

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Stuckfree

Member
The disadvantages completely outweigh the benefits of uninstalling applications manually. Firstly being that it will cost you a lot of time to complete such task fully since every little registry key and file needs to be removed. Also the second issue comes with knowing what files and folders to delete. Manually uninstalling an application is not as simple as deleting the program files in your C:\ since many applications have registry entries to help with the functionality of the application or to add specific shortcuts within Windows. The only people that know where an application is installed are the developers. In theory it is possible for them to tell you what files and registry entries need to be removed however it would be more easier for them to create a separate process to complete it for the user (Uninstaller).

In short terms, Yes you can do it but the risk of running into problems and not being able to recover from them are heightened and unless you have a specific need to do so I would always uninstall from Control panel and run an uninstall .exe from the developer to completely remove the program since they are the ones who made the application. Either way you will have removed the application so for a user I would take the easier and stress free route of using the uninstaller.

Hope This Helps,
Josh! :)



Hi ShadowJK,

WOW man pretty good reasonable explanation it clarify everything and a great appreciation for the your help.

Regard Stuckfree.
 

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Stuckfree

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The exception I would note are small programs designed not to leave a footprint behind. As example, most of my AHK programs use an .ini file in the same folder as the exe for settings. They don't create Registry keys. For these, stopping the program and deleting it's containing folder are sufficient. Well, there is no uninstaller so you're kind of stuck with manual. :)


Hi Mileshead,

So if I want to know if a program created some entries in the registry I have to open resgitry editor and check for the program name?
 

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LMiller7

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That an application will writes it's registry entries in a folder of it's own name is merely a convention. In practice an application can write it's registry entries anywhere it pleases.
 

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Shadowjk

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Hi Mileshead,

So if I want to know if a program created some entries in the registry I have to open resgitry editor and check for the program name?

Typically, if an application requires you to install it before running it (Going through the setup wizard) then it will most likely add registry entries. Otherwise if it is an application which runs straight from a .exe then there is a slim chance that registry keys are used and therefore deleting the .exe itself will remove it from the machine
 

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MilesAhead

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Hi Mileshead,

So if I want to know if a program created some entries in the registry I have to open resgitry editor and check for the program name?

The only way to know for sure is to take a registry snapshot before and after the install. But during normal program run it can also add registry entries. But using a program like RegShot should give you an idea how the program behaves. Some programs surprise you by making hundreds of changes. Making assumptions is dangerous.
 

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Stuckfree

Member
That an application will writes it's registry entries in a folder of it's own name is merely a convention. In practice an application can write it's registry entries anywhere it pleases.



Hi LMiller7,

That means it depend on a software developer choice.
 

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