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When I install and uninstall a program there always seems to be stuff leftover that the uninstall didn't remove.(files,registry keys) Is there an easy way to log everything that was installed so it can be cleanly and compleatly removed at a later time? Are there any open source projects that can take a snapshot of your system before and after an install?

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migrated from stackoverflow.com Jul 24 '09 at 12:08

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Doesn't system recovery do something similar? –  NomeN Jul 24 '09 at 12:01

5 Answers 5

You could use a virtual machine to take a snapshot and then compare the output, though this is admittedly a very heavy-handed method.

Here is a tool that seems to monitor registry changes and might be what you are looking for.

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Sandboxie will do this for you.

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Superuser says: "This site is currently in private beta testing." Why should the question belong there? –  Rinat Abdullin Jul 24 '09 at 12:08

I think the quick answer is no.

Even if you took a snapshot before and after, and reset things to how they were, you would encounter some other process that modified or created a file while the install took place.

If you want to clean up your registry, there are tons of registry-cleaning tools out there that fix problems and remove orphaned entries.

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I don't know any programs like you described but CCleaner can clean the things you described (files, registry etc.).

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I've been using Revo Uninstaller for over a year to clean out the junk (registry keys, empty folder), and it works great in Advanced mode. Totally free.

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