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Chapter 3. Installing, Uninstalling, and... > Remove Programs the Right Way

Remove Programs the Right Way

You installed a new program. You tried it. You hated it. Now how do you get it off your computer? Don’t just delete the shortcuts on the Start menu and the desktop. That still leaves all the program files and settings cluttering up your computer. And whatever you do, don’t just go into your Program Files folder and start deleting files or folders that look like they belong to that program! That creates even more of a mess and is practically guaranteed to give you headaches, like random error messages and crashes.

The right way to uninstall a program is to let Windows do it for you. If you used a setup program to install the program, there’s a good chance that the program’s author designed an uninstall routine as well. The really considerate ones add an Uninstall This Program shortcut on the All Programs menu, in the same folder that contains your other shortcuts for that program. If your unwanted program doesn’t include an uninstall shortcut, click Start and open Control Panel; then double-click Add Or Remove Programs.


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