Tutorial Thursday

One of the things that Windows is notorious for is not completely uninstalling an application when you go through the Add/Remove Programs. There just always seems to be some junk left behind that is impossible to get rid of, well, almost impossible.

ZSoft Uninstaller (Download Mirror) hopes to conquer all of your uninstallation woes by providing a more advanced method for keeping track of the applications you install. Normally when you install a program it creates an uninstall log that monitors where all of the files and registry values are stored. That way it can reference when a user wants to uninstall it later on.

Some things, such as registry values associated with your program settings, aren’t removed in case you decide to install the program again later on. That way you won’t have to reconfigure it all again. I don’t know about you, but when I want to uninstall a program I want everything it created to be removed.

That’s where ZSoft Uninstaller comes into play. It will scan your hard drive and registry both before and after installing a program. Then it will compare the differences so that there are no worries about everything not getting removed. All it takes from you is a few clicks…

  1. Download and install ZSoft Uninstaller (Download Mirror).
  2. Click the Analyze button in the toolbar. Press Next when you see the popup on the screen.
  3. Click the Before Installation button to begin the hard drive analysis. Depending on the speed of your hard drive and how many files are on it, this could take several minutes.
  4. Begin the installation of your application, in our case we are installing Google Earth.
  5. After the installation completes, press the After Installation button on the ZSoft Uninstaller. This will reanalyze your hard drive and Windows Registry looking for changes. When it completes it will ask for the name of the application.
  6. Now the comparison between the before and after will take place, and then the window will close. If you want to see the differences just switch to the Analyzed Programs tab, right-click on the program, and choose Show Recorded Info.
  7. Similarly, you can go to the Analyzed Programs tab and click the Uninstall button to truly remove the application from your computer.

One thing that you want to make sure when using this program is that you promptly perform the before and after scans without doing anything “extra” in between. If you create a file in between the two scans, ZSoft Uninstaller will think that the application created it during the setup routine, and if you try to remove the program later on, that file would also be removed.

Thanks to Radu for the tip!