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Uninstall Software from all the Windows User accounts

Posted on 2012-08-20
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2013-01-22

I have a MSI installer created for per-machine installation, meaning all the Windows User accounts can be able to use the software without any restrictions.
Once I installed using an Administrator account it works fine on all Windows user accounts.
BUT I am unable to uninstall through the ADD/REMOVE programs list as the installed software was not seen in the ADD/REMOVE programs list of all the Windows User accounts.
The installed software is only seen in the ADD/REMOVE lists from the Administrator account where the software was installed.

I need help to fix this scenario. The installed software MUST be able to uninstalled from all the Windows user accounts through the Add/Remove Programs list. This should be the case for both on Windows 7 and windows XP.

Is there a way to fix this using the ORCA tool or VS Setup project 2010 is much appreciated.
What are the settings or properties that need to be set for a Per-Machine installation and the software is reflecting in the ADD/REMOVE Programs list ?
Is there any Registry settings that I have to look at?

Please advise a little vividly.

Question by:ravindrasen
LVL 13

Expert Comment

ID: 38311960
You could verify that the permissions on the registry key are correct:

HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\<Application or Random GUiD>

Find the key (if it's a random GUID you can go thru them and verify that it's the correct App with the "DisplayName") right click and choose permissions.  Verify that Users or Domain Users have Read access.

Author Comment

ID: 38314821
Though I verified the application GUID at the HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall registry location and provided the Users, Administrators Read access, STILL it does not show up in the ADD/Remove programs list when I switch to a different windows User.

Is there anything I need to make sure that the installation is a Per-Machine installation.
Through ORCA I have checked that the ALLUSERS = 2 and the FolderForm_AllUsers = "ALL" et al.

Please help me.

Author Comment

ID: 38315363
It looks my software puts an entry in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Installer\Products and seems to me this is affecting the ADD/Remove programs lists.

Though I do have a registry HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall with all the permissions and details and even if I delete that registry entry, nothing happens at the Add/Remove programs lists.

But when I delete the entry from the HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Installer\Products, then my application from the ADD/Remove lists disappears.

If both these entries are there, then I see the application twice in the ADD/REMOVE programs lists.

Is this due to Per-User installation and its not completely Per-Machine installation. IF so

Please let me know how to solve this issue ???
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Author Comment

ID: 38316303
Hello ,

Partly I figured this out.

There were some per-user installation entries in the registy created by our beloved MS Setup installer.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/835460 . This piece of information helped me to remove the per-user installation information completely from my installers.

Now Unistallation happens ONLY for Administrators accounts. Good to go for now.

I am trying to know how I can make uninstallation happen for ALL THE WINDOWS USER ACCOUNTS though installation happened through an ADMINSTRATOR ACCOUNT.

Any help much appreciated.

Thanks much
LVL 40

Accepted Solution

Vadim Rapp earned 2000 total points
ID: 38316542
So, is the installation you try to remove, per-user, or per-machine? find out product code (from under HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall), take the group before the 1st dash, invert (that is, abc -> cba), and see if you will find this under HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Installer\Products or under HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Installer\Products.

If this is per-machine, then you probably don't need to uninstall it from the users once you have uninstalled it by the admin. Once uninstallation is available to the adminitrator, all you need to do is uninstall it as administrator on each machine; which you can do by using psexec - see recently closed http://www.experts-exchange.com/Q_27799526.html for details
LVL 40

Expert Comment

by:Vadim Rapp
ID: 38788452
I noticed that I did not tell what to do if the installation is per-user after all.

It's possible by three ways:

1. logon each user and uninstall

2. hack the registry to remove the key found in ID: 38316542 for each user hive. You can load other users' hives using menu File/Load Hive in Regedit.

3. the ultimate solution: delete whole user's profile from the machine.
LVL 53

Expert Comment

ID: 38804708
This question has been classified as abandoned and is closed as part of the Cleanup Program. See the recommendation for more details.

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