Failed software installations and uninstallations can be a major headache. Last year, while I was trying to refresh my Norton installation, the uninstaller failed. This left me in no man’s land since neither could I uninstall Norton, nor could I reinstall it (due to the presence of a broken installation). In my case AppRemover came to my rescue. However, AppRemover works only with Antivirus utilities. What if something similar had happened with other applications?
I found a tiny app called Windows Installer Cleanup Utility (WICU), which appeared to be the potential solution. Ironically, the setup for Windows Installer Cleanup Utility also failed. Fortunately, I found a fix at the WinHelpOnline Blog (skip to the end of the post if WICU setup fails for you too) and managed to get it working.
The utility itself is simple and straight forward. The application lists all everything currently installed in your system. Select the application you are having trouble with and WICU would simply delete the problematic entry from the installation database. It takes care of related files as well as registry entries. This should allow you to properly re-install the broken application. It must be noted here that Windows Installer Cleanup Utility doesn’t uninstall the broken application. It just removes it from the installation database, so that you can reinstall it. Obviously WICU won’t work if the application in question doesn’t utilise the Windows Installer.
Download Windows Installer Cleanup Utility (352 KB)
Operating System: Windows all
1. Open your temporary folder by entering %temp% in the Start Menu.
2. Double click on the WICU installer (msicuu2.exe). Don’t close the error message (i.e. don’t click on OK).
3. Inside your temporary folder you should find a folder named IXP000.TMP. Copy this to your desktop (or wherever you wish).
4. Close the error message (from step 2) and open the copy of IXP000.TMP folder you created in step 3.
5. If you are on Windows 95/98/Me rename the file MsiZapA.exe to MsiZap.exe. For newer operating systems, rename MsiZapU.exe to MsiZap.exe.
6. Double click on msicuu.exe to launch the Windows Installer Cleanup Utility.