• Left overs from uninstall of Windows apps

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    #219949

    A moderator on a different computer forum website gave me the following scrip to permanently and completely remove Windows 10 universal and store apps from my desktop PC:

    Get-AppxPackage -allusers *AppName* | Remove-AppxPackage

    The icons have disappeared from Apps & features and the A-Z list on the Startup menu, which I am told is proof that the uninstalls were successful. However, the app packages are still sitting in C:\Program Files\WindowsApps. These folders include the *.exe files and some are as large as 20 MB.

    I’ve been told that leaving the packages behind is standard for Microsoft but that they aren’t viable to restart the apps.

    Is this information correct? Can I now safely delete the package folders? Will vestiges of the apps, e.g. registry entries, be left behind?

    Thank you for giving me a second opinion.

    Ann

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    • #220076

      They will return in the next ‘feature upgrade’ so, what’s the point of removing them? Save a few hundred megabytes why? Don’t get hung up on making the system leaner by creating space, just use it.
      IMHO If you don’t see them in the GUI then forgeddaboutit

      Win8.1/R2 Hybrid lives on...
    • #220089

      As of build 14926, which was included in the Creators Update build 15063 April 2017, if you uninstall an built-in app that status is supposed to be maintained over upgrades. See Windows 10 will not reinstall uninstalled apps when upgrading to newer builds[/url].

      This is my experience with built-in apps I’ve uninstalled.

       

      --Joe

      • #220539

        Thanks, joep, for giving the build number for that change. I had read that MS was going to discontinue auto reinstalling apps, and someone else on the forum confirmed MS had indeed followed through, but it’s good to know when it occurred.

        Unfortunately, I’ve been proved right in my skepticism about the effectiveness of the script that I quoted in my original post in this thread. Today I created a new user on my computer, and all the MS apps that I uninstalled last month appeared–viable as ever–in the new account (along with a few new ones). When I uninstalled them last month, they disappeared from the Apps & features list and the start menu, but Elvis is still very much in the building! *chuckle* It has crossed my mind that Microsoft’s new policy for pushing its software may be to make its apps un-uninstallable.

        So, if you don’t mind me asking, what method did YOU use to successfully remove the MS apps you didn’t want?

        Ann

        • #220558

          The reason the apps appeared with the new user profile is because they are default apps — they come with Windows. So while you may be able to remove them from an existing profile, you won’t be able to prevent them from showing up when you create a new profile. And they will be gone only from the profile that you have removed them from, not from any other profile.

          It may be that there is a program out there which will remove them from every profile, and from the computer itself. But it is also possible that whenever an update is done, the update process will see that part of Windows has somehow been removed and will therefore reinstall it. I’m not sure how you can prevent this sort of thing with the way Windows is now updated. The only way I can think of to prevent this sort of thing is to have a program which continually monitors what is installed, and uninstall whatever you removed that then got reinstalled. Even if such a program exists, it is always possible that a Windows update would either block or disable that program, or simply install the missing apps a different way.

          If you have Windows 10 Pro or higher (i.e. anything other than Windows 10 Home), then I suggest you edit the Group Policy (search on Edit Group Policy) and dig around in there to see if there is a setting which will force the kind of behavior you want Windows to have. In my experience, setting something through Group Policy will make it stick a lot better than if you set it the normal way in Windows. The example I am thinking of is Sleep settings. I tried to disable sleep via the power options, but it kept going back to “Sleep after 8 hours of inactivity”. However, if I disable sleep in the Group Policy, it stays disabled.

          Group "L" (Linux Mint)
          with Windows 10 running on a separate hard drive
          1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #220596

          @artistann errrm the power shell methods about the best for removing the UWP apps followed by uninstalling from settings the real trick is keeping them from creeping back and the unwanted “Junk” that M$ insists on sneaking on to your machine. I use WinAero Tweaker it works for me there’s all sorts of goodies in there from the aesthetically pleasing tweaks for Win10 to low down under the hood tweaking, for Windows update blocking and even removing the pesky arrows from shortcuts in a user friendly format (GUI). Works well and is well supported by Sergei Tschenko? (bet I spelt that wrong) and its free and minimally invasive on your system.
          https://winaero.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/Winaero-Tweaker-0.10-Disable-Ads.pngBlocking page.
          As @mrjimphelps says the Apps in the Win10 image are “staged” just waiting for the connection to the net and they update upon install, WinAero Tweaker stops them, not only reinstalling after removal but the random “crud” that M$ insists you have on a regular basis.
          There’s loads of other stuff in that Utility as well you may find to your liking hope that helps out a little 🙂

          2 users thanked author for this post.
    • #220561

      Remove-AppxPackage only removes the apps on the current account.
      * If you want to remove them from all accounts, use Remove-AppxPackage -allusers
      * If you want to remove them from the provisioned account (which then prevents any future user accounts from having the apps installed), use Remove-AppxProvisionedPackage -online

      BE CAREFUL here, because using AppxProvisionedPackage makes it impossible to get the apps back if you also remove Store. Normally, with AppxPackage, you can run a script to re-install all the apps. AppxProvisionedPackage removes them in a way that this command does not work (and instead will error out). If you do use AppxProvisionedPackage, I strongly suggest using the one referenced here (https://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/4689-uninstall-apps-windows-10-a.html#option4) which will remove everything except Store; you can use Store to re-install the apps even if they’re removed with AppxProvisionedPackage.

      4 users thanked author for this post.
    • #220769

      “If you have Windows 10 Pro or higher (i.e. anything other than Windows 10 Home), then I suggest. . .”  –MrJimPhelps

      I apologize for forgetting to mention that I have Windows 10 Home on my PC.

      “I strongly suggest using the one referenced here https://www.tenforums.com/tutorials/4689-uninstall-apps-windows-10-a.html#option4 ”  –zero2dash

      This is the same tenforum.com tutorial where I was advised to use script option #3 to uninstall specific apps for myself and future users.  I’m letting the administrator who wrote and maintains the tutorial  know that it does not work for new users.  There are a few of the Windows Apps that I want to hang onto, plus a larger group whose functions I don’t have a clue about, otherwise I would try the option #4 you recommend that eliminates all provisioned apps except Store.

      MS has apparently changed the definition of uninstall and even computer gurus, like tenforum’s administrator, seem to have adopted it.  The dictionary definition still says :  If you uninstall a computer program, you remove it permanently from your computer.

      If I may be permitted a moment of sour grapes, I find it ironic that MS has made silly apps like Candy Crush and Priceline un-uninstallable, while it is so careless about its user profile system files that it let/made my Pictures and Videos folders disappear into thin air while I was changing their location!  I am taking Woody’s advice to leave the registry alone–for the time being–in the hope that the next Win features update will notice they are missing and restore them.

      Re BobbyB’s suggestion that I try WinAero Tweaker:  friend Tkachenko  put up a registry entry in January 2016 that stopped Win 10 from periodically installing new apps https://winaero.com/blog/fix-windows-10-installs-apps-like-candy-crush-soda-saga-automatically/.  From the comments posted, this admirable tweak apparently ceased working at some point, probably in the wake of some Win quality update or other.

      I know there are users who swear by WinAero Tweaker, it’s just that not everything in the bundle appeals to me personally, and being fussy, that’s enough for me to take a pass.  I have decided to: live with the apppackages sitting on my C drive; thank the computer gods that my SSD is 256 GB rather than 120; and stay hopeful that MS’s junk apps won’t eventually fill it up.  😉

      By the way, the new user I created–the one with all the flashing kiddy game tiles on its start menu–is a second administrator account that is just going to sit there in case of emergency.   Ergo there’s no need for me to worry about cleaning it up.
      Why a second admin account on a one-woman device?   You can probably guess, but I’d love to tell you!  You see, I just finished moving to a new computer.   My Bitdefender Security program installed a version update on my old PC last week, including a terrif’ feature called something like “secure profile” (which it activated without asking my permission).  Immediately thereafter, on the very day I planned to start moving my files off that computer, I logged in and received this message:  “The User Profile Service service failed the logon.  User profile cannot be loaded.”  I googled it, and the repair sounded treacherous! Thankfully, over the life of the PC, I had kept a second administrator account and was able to use it to get in and get my data off the hard drive.  For the second time in one post, I have to acknowledge that the big IT manager in the sky looks after me.

      May all who have proffered their advice, and those who have kindly read THIS FAR, be similarly blessed.

      Ann

    • #220825

      While it may be disconcerting to see the apps be installed for a new user you have to understand the way Windows is designed to work. Each user has settings, apps, and programs unique to that user. When a new user is created a default user profile is the template for the user. Windows does not pay attention to how other users are configured. It is up to the administrator creating the user, in this case YOU, to configure the new user as needed. So, as was explained above to affect all future users you must configure the provisioned apps the way you want.

      As far as some apps not being able to be uninstalled I believe that Microsoft has made some deal with the third party vendor. Either Microsoft is getting paid or Microsoft believes that the third party app is popular enough to get people’s attention. You’d think that would not really influence Microsoft but who knows.

      --Joe

    • #220851

      As I think I’ve mentioned before – to avoid the install of Candy Crush, Bubble Witch, March of Empires, Disney’s Magic Kingdoms, etc. make sure your PC/laptop is not connected to the Internet when installing Windows 10 (up to version 1803, at least).

      I also turn off and remove all of the live tiles before connecting to the Internet as well. Not sure if this needs to be done but as I have no use (or liking) for the tiles I do it anyway.

      All of the other unwanted (to me) things like Microsoft Store, People, My Office, XBox, Skype, etc. I remove with the Tools option of CCleaner. Cortana can’t be removed (but can be ‘neutralized’ with something like ShutUp10 which turns Cortana into a ‘normal’ search function) and the ‘Connect’ and ‘Mixed Reality Portal’ icons remain on the Start Menu even though they’ve been removed according to CCleaner – I just ignore them.

      None of the abovementioned ‘bloat’  makes an appearance/comes back, even after running Windows Update several times. So far, anyway.

      Gigabyte B560M D2V Motherboard, Intel i5 11400 CPU, 16GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce GTX 1650 Graphics Card, 1x Samsung 870 EVO 250GB SSD, 1x Samsung 860 EVO 250GB SSD, Windows 10 Professional 22H2 64bit.

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