If you're a super user you'd probably have 100s of programs installed on some PC that you use. Now when going through the "Add or Remove Programs" list in Windows XP, or the "Programs and Features" table in Vista, you still cannot:

  1. categorize and tag programs to "sort" them out and see which you really need
  2. view approx installed filesize to see which is taking up space
  3. see recently installed programs, or sort by installed date

So its quite a peeve to manage installed programs, are there any apps that can help?

CCleaner helps a bit -- loading the list of installed programs instantly, instead of waiting minutes for the Windows Control Panel to "populate" their list. It also lets you "remove" entries for corrupted installations.

  • AFAIK you can do 2 and 3 in add/remove programs in xp and vista. – hasen Aug 22 '09 at 13:21
  • No, only 2 .. though it has "Date Last Used" – Robin Rodricks Aug 22 '09 at 13:22
  • 2 is not really true, at least on XP, for many programs (ok, games), it will tell you the size taken by the installer program only (so, something around a few mb), or give no size at all. – Gnoupi Aug 22 '09 at 15:13

RevoUninstaller helps a bit and,
There is also UpdateNotifier for programs that work with it.


It is easy to categorize programs in the Windows start menu, you wouldn't need any software for that. If you'd like to categorize icons on your desktop, have a look at Stardock Fences. I don't know whether it is still free - it used to be free while still in Beta.

I also like 8Start Launcher, a graphical application management and launch utility.

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Edit: read Robert C. Cartaino's comment on Fences and decide for yourself if you want to put up with this.

  • love this program.. super find! FYI its still free – rzlines Aug 22 '09 at 14:05
  • NOTE - As of Sep, 2009, Fences started bundling a content distributed app called Impulse (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Impulse_%28content_delivery%29). I find it unconscionable that any legitimate software company would install such a piece of software without your knowlege or permission. – Robert Cartaino Sep 4 '09 at 14:56
  • well, i have never used Fences (as it requires dotnet :) but thanks for the heads up, shame that a reputed company such as Stardock is resorting to such atrocities. – Molly7244 Sep 4 '09 at 15:38

Free Uninstaller is what you are looking out for

It provides a vastly improved interface which highlights system entries in blue and invalid entries in red. You can lookup more information about any software or its manufacturer from the web (Google, Yahoo and Live Search are supported). Other features include the ability to uninstall multiple programs together, to delete invalid entries, to backup registry, to export list of installed, to sort installed softwares according to various parameters.

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You should also take a look at this post, it will help you decide which one suits you best

  • Could you tone down that last bit? It's probably stuck on a heading. – random Aug 22 '09 at 13:35
  • oh well i thought that it would get lost and its an important part of the post so i put it as a header – rzlines Aug 22 '09 at 13:37
  • 1
    I wanted more than a fancy "un"installer. – Robin Rodricks Aug 22 '09 at 13:38
  • it is much more than a fancy uninstaller, it has features that you wanted – rzlines Aug 22 '09 at 13:49

Not exactly the features you asked for, but:

Safarp is a lite and fast replacement for Add/Remove programs. While it doesn't have the features you asked for, it's lightning fast so that alone should be a big plus in making it easier to look for unwanted programs and uninstall them. It also has a search bar.

Also, FileHippo has an application that checks for updates for (certain) installed programs, so in a sense it's a manager for installed programs.

2. view approx installed filesize to see which is taking up space

I agree with @Gnoupi's comment above, I wouldn't take the space usage quoted in Add/Remove Programs as being anywhere near close. For this I would use something like Spacemonger, WinDirStat or Treesize to quickly visualise the usage.


I agree with the recommendation of RevoUninstaller, but want to make mention of WinDirStat as another tool to help address your second point. WinDirStat is an excellent utility to view disk space usage. It's both free and can be portable for use from USB drives.

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