How a Program Is Removed in Software

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How a Program Is Removed
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When you choose to uninstall a program, Windows XP takes a look at the program and all its components, and then deletes the files from your computer in an organized manner When programs are installed, various files are used so the program can communicate with Windows XP and interact with it In some cases, files are present that help the program function with other programs on your computer Windows XP makes certain all of these files are deleted properly so that an uninstallation of one program does not damage another program or Windows XP
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How to Do Everything with Windows XP
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Sometimes, you end up with programs that really like you and do not want to leave your computer There is no uninstall option on the CD-ROM, and the program is not listed in Add/Remove Programs as an option you can uninstall Although this normally does not happen, you can still remove the program by deleting its folder This is not a recommended action, because you may experience problems by forcing an application to delete itself However, this option can be used when absolutely necessary See the upcoming How To box for step-by-step instructions Under no circumstances should you delete a program s folder if you can use the CD-ROM or Add/Remove Programs option Deleting the folder does not allow Windows XP to properly delete and clean up after the application, so this should be considered a last-resort option Also, before using this option, check your program s documentation for specific information about uninstalling the program from Windows XP
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Forcefully Remove a Program
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In the event that you cannot use Add/Remove Programs or the program s uninstall option, you can forcefully remove a program by following these steps:
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1 Open My Computer and double-click your C drive icon 2 Locate a folder called Program Files and double-click it You may need
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to click the View All Contents link as prompted
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3 Look through the folders and find the one that has the program you
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want to uninstall Typically, the name of the folder will state the program s name or the manufacturer s name
4 When you have found the folder, right-click it and click Delete to
remove it from your computer Make sure you are deleting the correct folder before completing the action
CHAPTER 4: Managing Components, Programs, Folders, and Files
If trying to install or uninstall a program has left you with a bunch of problems, Windows XP offers a System Restore feature that can help you get things sorted out See 20 for details
Downloading Programs from the Internet
The Internet contains a wealth of applications that you can download and use on your computer many of them for free For those that are not free, you can often download an evaluation version of a program to see if you like how it works on your computer before actually purchasing it There are also all kinds of utilities for Windows and games you can download as well When you choose to download an application from the Internet, you click a link on the Web site that starts the download to your computer When this happens, a dialog box, such as the one shown in Figure 4-3, appears so you can choose whether to open the application from its current location or save it to disk If you choose to open the application, the setup files are downloaded to you and setup begins If you do not, the files are all saved to a place that you specify on this window (such as your Desktop or My Documents folder) You can then start setup yourself when you are ready There is no right or wrong here, just a matter of preference
FIGURE 4-3
This dialog box appears when you begin to download a program from the Internet
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You Can Save a Downloadable Program to a Disk
If you choose to save a program to disk when you start the download, the program is downloaded to you in a compressed format This practice saves time when downloading Usually, the application will appear as a simple icon Double-click the icon to uncompress and start the installation Windows XP includes compression software so you can open and use compressed folders (see the section Using Folder Compression, later in this chapter) For specific installation steps, refer to the Web site where you downloaded the program
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