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Finally, an Uninstall Program That Works

Your Uninstaller 2006 Pro keeps your computer free of unwanted programs.

Joel P. Bruckenstein, 07/12/2007

One thing that I find really annoying is programs that don't install or uninstall properly. At the very least, I think it is reasonable for a user to expect a program to install correctly. Most do, but I'm still surprised at the number of programs that don't. For every program that does not install properly, however, there are probably about 10 times as many that fail to uninstall. Perhaps some vendors cannot anticipate a circumstance in which you would want to rid yourself of their masterpiece, or perhaps if you are about to become a former user they are less worried about your computer's well being. Whatever the case may be, I often encounter programs that do not uninstall properly.

Often, I find that uninstall programs leave behind fragments--perhaps icons or entries on the Windows start menus. These leftovers are obvious; and though annoying, they are easy to deal with. The more troubling leftovers are those you are less likely to uncover. This list would include things like installation folders and registry entries.

There are a number of reasons that poor uninstalls should worry you. One is that the leftovers take up disk space. Another is that over time, all of this extra junk can slow down your computer. Of course, there is also the potential that some of these fragments can result in a less stable computing environment.

So how do you deal with install and uninstall problems? Your Uninstaller 2006 Pro, an application I've been trying, seems to do a very good job of making sure that the program you uninstall really uninstalls. You can launch the application my clicking the Your Uninstaller 2006 Pro icon, or you can simply drag and drop a program's icon onto the Your Uninstalle! 2006 Pro icon to start uninstalling.

The application uses a three-step process to rid your computer of unwanted programs. First, through its own interface, it acts much like the Windows Add/Remove program utility to launch the uninstall routine associated with the program you are trying to remove. Second, it scans the Windows registry to locate leftover entries. When I ran uninstall on an old Jasc Paint Shop Pro Studio Dell Edition that came preinstalled on my computer at the time of purchase, Uninstaller 2006 Pro identified 183 registry entries that the Jasc uninstaller left on my computer, which were then removed. Finally, it scans the installation folder for any unnecessary remaining files.

For those programs not listed in Add/Remove Programs, there is a feature called advanced uninstall. Assuming you can identify the program, there is a good chance this application can uninstall it. Also included: an auto-fix feature that can repair some faulty installation programs.

Your Uninstaller 2006 Pro offers some additional goodies. There's a utility that can identify all programs that run when Windows starts. You can then disable the programs that you do not want to automatically launch at start up without deleting them. If you are sure you will never want to run an application at start up again you can delete it, but if you do that you cannot later recover it.

The application also includes a utility that helps clean your Windows Start menu, as well as a utility that can manage your Internet Explorer menus. Finally, there is a utility to help lean temporary files, if you don't already have one.

Your Uninstaller 2006 Pro was easy to use, and that's a good thing because documentation is limited. It performed well in my limited tests. In Tools under the Options tab, you can tell the program how aggressive to be in finding and removing suspected junk files. The "safe" mode should get most of the junk off your computer, and it is the least likely to remove something that it shouldn't. This is important because the registry remover is an all or nothing affair. By that, I mean that you can't individually select the registry entries that the program removes, although you can review them. You can back up the uninstall info and do a restore if there is a problem, but you must manually set this option under the "File" menu before you initiate the uninstall.

The Pro version, which is the one I recommend, sells for $39.99 at http://www.ursoftware.com. It can be purchased bundled with additional applications for prices starting at $44.99. I was able to download a free 21-day trial version here: http://www.wugnet.com/shareware/spow.asp?ID=524 .

If you've ever been frustrated by programs that don't uninstall properly, or if you simply want a higher degree of certainty that your PC hard drive will not get gunked up with unnecessary remnants of old applications, Your Uninstaller 2006 Pro is a good investment.

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