The windows installer seems not to feel like uninstalling Office 2010 Professional Plus. Instead, it keeps going into a reboot. Even after starting the process with msiexec /norestart -x.

Is it true, REBOOT=ReallySuppress is a really-don't-reboot option for msiexec? And if so, is there a really-really-don't-reboot option, or, even better, a really-really-really-don't-reboot option? Can anybody tell the name of the strongest reboot disabling option, so I can uninstall Office, please?

  • REBOOT=ReallyTimesInfinitySuppress? It feels like the MSI and Office are bickering 1st graders.
    – fire.eagle
    May 25 '12 at 14:55
  • I believe what is really wrong here is that the office package contains a custom action that is rebooting the system in a non-standard way. It is likely visible towards the end of the InstallExecuteSequence table. Ideally this would be fixed during application packaging before deploying the product, but it can be fixed after deployment by using a minor upgrade patch to remove the custom action before uninstalling. This is not that easy, but the only valid option professionally that is using standard Microsoft technologies and will remain reliable. Don't use any of the hacks here. Jun 21 '14 at 9:17
  • Related: stackoverflow.com/questions/7558882/…. @SteinÅsmul might recording a log file with /L*V pin down what's prompting the reboot in custom installer action? (ref1, ref2). Jun 23 '15 at 21:49

The strongest "don't reboot" option in Windows is to temporarily remove the "Shut down the system" and "Force shutdown from a remote system" privileges from "Administrators" and "Users", using secpol.msc. In this way, it will be enforced by Windows, regardless of how the particular installer or MSI package is written.

Note: User privilege changes apply only when you log in.

Note: You may have to remove the Users group as well, since interactive logons automatically belong to this group.

Note: In some cases, it might be better to use the "Token" tab in Process Hacker to directly remove these privileges (SeShutdownPrivilege and SeRemoteShutdownPrivilege) from the program, instead of doing it system-wide.

  • Thank you, it sounds great. I've opened secpol but can't find the user privilege settings. Where exactly are they?
    – wnrph
    May 25 '12 at 10:45
  • They are under Local Policies - User Rights Assignment.
    – user1686
    May 25 '12 at 10:51
  • 1
    Administrators that can't shut down the system? That sounds.. weird, and dangerous.
    – Bob
    May 25 '12 at 10:51
  • 1
    @grawity Thanks. I cleared the whole list. After logging off and on again, I no longer see the shutdown option in the start menu. However, Windows Installer still keeps rebooting.
    – wnrph
    May 25 '12 at 11:01
  • 1
    The ProcessHacker method worked. Thank you very much! (although it still doesn't uninstall--now it's something else. It just won't uninstall)
    – wnrph
    May 25 '12 at 11:16

REBOOT=ReallySuppress is the best I know of, but if you're having trouble uninstalling Office 2010 you might want to follow the advice over here:

We recommend that you follow the provided methods in this article in order. However, if you have previously tried one of the methods to remove Office and it has failed, you can jump to another method quickly from this list:

Method 1: Uninstall Microsoft Office 2010 suites from Control Panel
Method 2: Uninstall Microsoft Office 2010 suites with Microsoft Fix it
Method 3: Uninstall Microsoft Office 2010 suites with the Program Install and Uninstall troubleshooter
Method 4: Remove Microsoft Office 2010 suites manually

  • I am a deployment specialist. This is the right advice. Period. No rudeness, I just want to stress this since people do the craziest things when faced with these kinds of problems. I believe what is really wrong in this office package is that it may contain a custom action that is rebooting the system in a non-standard way. See my comment above to the original question. Custom actions must be inspected. They can contain "anything" and are often black box (impossible to inspect if they are compiled). At the very least look at the name of it - it may be called "reboot system" or similar. Jun 21 '14 at 20:42
  • Windows itself might need to be updated to really suppress all reboots of all kinds with a special "temporary call" that can be enabled for a few minutes whilst a package deployment is done? Hacking privileges is a scary thing. Apr 3 '19 at 14:01

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