We’ve all done it. Installed this worthless application, that game we just had to try, a few pesky tool bars that slipped under the radar and before we know it our PCs are running as slow as can be. Dr. Data remembers one client who could never get his PC to shut down because so many games and gunk had been added – and never removed – over the years.

A good many games and applications – including free-ware – come with their own uninstallers. This is a big help in getting rid – when we remember to – of outdated, unneeded and unwanted software but there is a catch; these uninstallers often leave bits and pieces behind. This means that even though the software application is long gone, there may be one or more DLL’s (Dynamic Load Library) still being loaded at start-up. Your system has enough to deal with in loading stuff for the applications that you do want without loading old baggage from days of yore. (“Days of Yore” is a technical term in computing for anything from 6 months ago or later.)

But wait! There’s more! Let’s say that you’re moving from version 1.x of some game or utility to the new and improved version 2.0. The installer may say that it’s uninstalling 1.x before installing 2.0 but it doesn’t get rid of all of the bits from that earlier version. Even worse, version 2.0 is installed along side of version 1.x which means that you now have two versions on your system instead of one. What to do?

TechRepublic lists Five Uninstallers That Really Work on its blog for April 27, 2012. Some of these – like the venerable Revo Uninstaller – are free or have a freeware version while some others do cost a bit. Dr. Data has used Revo quite a bit in the past but the TechRepublic post has clued him into the fact that “Your Uninstaller” found significantly more software than Revo did. All of these uninstallers include additional tools for Windows that may or may not be exactly what you need. Nonetheless, all of the uninstallers are good and worth a look.

One final word; Always be sure of what you’re uninstalling.

If you need assistance, Call Dr. Data – He’s here to help!

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