App of the Week – Completely Uninstall Windows Programs with Revo Uninstaller
Let’s say you’re trying out a new Windows app and you realize you’re sick of it. What do you do? Windows features a built-in Add/Remove Programs applet in the control panel – just go there and you’re done right? While this is a great solution for merely removing the essential program files in your C:\Programs Files folder, that’s it. Windows’ built-in solution doesn’t touch any unnecessary files or registry entries left behind by most uninstallation routines. To prevent your hard drive from getting cluttered and keep your PC humming, we’re dedicating this edition of App of the Week to Revo Uninstaller, a freeware program to completely uninstall and remove everything associated with programs you no longer want.
Platform Availability: Windows XP and up
Cost: I’m reviewing and personally use the freeware version of Revo Uninstaller. Download it here. The VS Revo Group offers a professional version for single users for $39.25, but you really don’t need any of the additional features unless you like to have ridiculously fine control over your system.
What it is: Ironically, an application to uninstall other applications. Double click on the application you want to uninstall, choose the uninstall mode you want to use (Built-In, Safe, Moderate, or Advanced), and get rid of that application you no longer want.
Features: Advanced Uninstallation Mode – After running the program’s built-in uninstaller, Revo Uninstaller will search out for any leftover files, folders, or registry entries associated with the program. Once it finds these, you have complete control over what you want to keep and what you want to delete.
Hunter Mode – Do you have an application/applet that’s not showing up in Revo Uninstaller? Launch Hunter Mode, which places a target icon on your desktop. Drag a program icon over the target and uninstall items that you couldn’t uninstall before.
Windows Tools – There are a lot of handy tools bundled with Windows like Disk Defragmenter and Security Center. A lot of times, these are buried deep in folders or preference lists. To make things way easier for yourself, just access all these tools from Revo Uninstaller.
Tracks Cleaner – Quickly and easily clear your history/cache for a variety of applications. The freeware version includes options for Windows, browsers, and Microsoft Office.
The Competition: CCleaner – Free – Windows 2000 and up
IObitUninstaller – Free – Windows 2000 and up
Why the Featured App is Best: CCleaner features a built-in uninstaller, but it doesn’t delete the program’s left-behind extras – it’s basically a clone of the native Windows uninstall applet in Control Panel. The same limitation applies to IObit. IObit’s only advantage is that it features a batch uninstaller.
Summary: I love applications that give you better control over your computer, and Revo Uninstaller does exactly that. It’s free, quickly and effectively removes remaining files/registry entries of applications, and even allows you to delete your history/tracks. It’s free, so try it out!
Are you happy with just using included options to uninstall programs? What are your thoughts on the competition? Let us know in the comments!