How to Recover an Uninstalled Program

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Uninstalling a program removes it from your computer, but with Windows System Restore, it is possible to undo this action. The likelihood of successfully recovering the uninstalled program depends on how long ago it was uninstalled. Any new programs that were installed after the program you want to recover was uninstalled will also be lost if you perform the restore, so you have to decide if it is worth the tradeoff. System Restore is included in the Windows operating system, so no third-party software is required for the operation.

  • Type "Control Panel" (without the quotation marks) on the Windows 8.1 Start screen and press "Enter."

  • Select "Recovery" and then select "Open System Restore."

  • Select "Next" and then click the "Show more restore points" check box to view a list of previous restore points.

  • Select a restore point before the program you want to recover was uninstalled and then select "Scan for affected programs" to see what other programs would be affected if you perform the restore.

  • Select "Close" and then select "Next" if you agree with the changes that the system restore will make to your system.

  • Save and close any programs that are open and then select "Finish."

  • Select "Yes" to initialize the system restore process and recover the uninstalled program. A message stating that the system restore completed successfully is displayed after a reboot to confirm that the operation was a success.

Tips & Warnings

  • Create manual restore points before uninstalling programs to ensure that you are able to perform a recovery should you change your mind.
  • Even if an uninstalled program is recovered successfully, there is no guarantee that it will work correctly. Reinstalling the program may be the only solution.




  • Photo Credit Jack Hollingsworth/Digital Vision/Getty Images

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