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I have installed Visual Studio 2017 side by side with of 2013 and 2015 (I didn't want to take risk if 2017 setup had failed).

I already had VS 2013 and 2015 on my machine. I don't need the older versions now and I really need to free up the space taken by these older versions.

Will the usual Uninstall procedure from "Programs and Features" do this task?

My concern based on previous experience is it might affect VS 2017 files.

Can anyone tell me the correct steps to uninstall VS 2013 and 2015 without touching 2017?

  • My experience has been that the easiest thing to do is to uninstall all three and then reinstall just 2017. Regrettably, I've not found a way to uninstall just the older versions without munging some functionality of the new. – DrMoishe Pippik Aug 4 '17 at 19:22
  • VS can exist side-by-side with earlier and newer of VS and can be removed without effecting each other – Ramhound Dec 17 '17 at 5:05
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According to these responses at social.msdn, yes, in theory.

In practice it also depends on how many and what components the older install had. The uninstall script can run into some nasty bumps if it at all attempts to, and possibly succeeds in closing a service used by another existing VS install. Shouldn't, though.

Take Git, for example. I don't use it- but follow the advice at this thread by removing Git components from within the old IDE before uninstalling it. In fact it's strongly recommended to remove as many addons/extensions from within the IDE to be uninstalled, as possible, first, and then remove the appropriate VS service packs. Components like Crystal Reports are nicely handled by the IDE (in this case VS2010) uninstall process.

Fun Fact: The VS2010 SP1 uninstall actually requested the mounting of the VS2010 DVD, whereas the IDE uninstall did not!

Another (Plan B) method is to flick through Apps & Features in Windows Settings and search for anything Visual Studio related beginning with "Microsoft". If, when removing Microsoft program A that you know is associated with the IDE being uninstalled, the uninstall hangs at 0% because of a TSR or service that can't be closed, then search for a similar program matching A and uninstall that. The approximate install/modification dates of the IDE are clearly indicated, but bear in mind that major Windows revision upgrades can also change the dates of some components to the date of the upgrade.

Plan B can be very time consuming and error prone, and applied only as a last resort.

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