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I need to uninstall and reinstall a program* on my Windows 10 device, so I was trying to do so from the Control Panel > Programs > Programs and Features menu.

When I selected it and clicked Uninstall, I got the following message (even though the program was not already uninstalled):

An error occurred while trying to uninstall Android Studio. It may have already been uninstalled.

Would you like to remove Android Studio from the Programs and Features list?

For some reason I (foolishly) thought this prompt would uninstall the program like I wanted, which was not the case. Instead, it has removed the program from the list, but the program still exists and runs from the taskbar and Start menu as if nothing changed. So now I've worsened my issue, because I can't figure out how to uninstall a program without it being in the Programs and Features list.

If anyone could help me resolve my self-inflicted problem, I would deeply appreciate it.


*If it matters, the program is Android Studio.

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    Have you simply tried to reinstall Android Studio and then uninstall it properly?
    – Ramhound
    Aug 30, 2021 at 20:55

3 Answers 3

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Find the program that you removed from Programs and Features.

Restart the computer, install the program. This will reset the uninstall components.

Restart again and now uninstall the program.

This method will work in the majority of cases.

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  • This ended up giving me the same error as in the main post, but did fix the removal of the program from the Programs and Features list, so I will accept this tomorrow if a better answer doesn't come along. See my answer for more details.
    – Drake P
    Aug 31, 2021 at 6:33
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If you look in the program's install directory, there might be an recognizable uninstaller component (e.g., "uninstall.exe"). Clicking on that would probably do the trick.

Also, the Windows 10 Settings app has a section that has functions duplicating those in the Control Panel Programs & Features. It's at Settings > Apps > Apps & Features, and clicking on a program name may result in an "Uninstall" button appearing.

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I ended up trying several different things, and got it kinda uninstalled I think? I tried:

  1. John's suggestion to reinstall it to add it to the Programs and Features and then uninstall it. This did add it back to the Programs and Features list which would've solved my issues under normal circumstances, but unfortunately I was still getting the same error.
  2. Per this guide, try Microsoft Program Install and Uninstall Utility. This helped nothing, as the program didn't show up in the list and I had no Product Code.
  3. Per the same guide, try Geek Uninstaller Utility. This maybe worked? The app was pinned to my taskbar and still worked afterwards which is a bad sign, but also it was not present in the Start Menu or Programs and Features list anymore. I still have the C:/Program Files/Android directory too which is strange. I manually deleted that folder before reinstalling.

Update: I had to again uninstall Android Studio a few months later, and Geek Uninstaller Utility didn't work that time. Fortunately, this answer worked for me.

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