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Remove Orphaned Entries in Add or Remove Programs

Sometimes, after you uninstall a program, its entry still remains in the Add or Remove Programs dialog box. When you click on Change/Remove in the dialog box, you get an error, telling you that the program no longer exists. This can be a major headache, if you install and test a lot of different programs.

You can remove these orphan entries:

  1. From a command line or from the Run line, run regedit. This opens the Registry Editor.
  2. Select the folder HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE and follow the folder path \SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall.
  3. Click on the + sign to expand the listing.
  4. Look for the name of the program with the orphaned entry.
  5. Delete the entire listing for the software with the orphaned entry, by highlighting it and pressing the Delete key.
  6. Close the Registry. The orphaned entry will be gone.
Note, editing the registry is not for everyone. You can really mess up your system if you have problems. Make sure you back up your registry before doing anything else. You do this by selecting the "Export Registry" option in the Registry menu in RegEdit.

 

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