You can now uninstall applications with Windows Package Manager (command line tools)


Last year, Microsoft presented a preview of Windows Package Manager, a utility that allows you to install Windows applications from a command prompt. Basically, it’s the Windows equivalent of the apt, yum, or pacman tools used by GNU/Linux distributions such as Debian, Fedora, and Arch.

But Windows Package Manager is still a work in progress. For example, a big thing that it hasn’t supported until recently? Uninstallation apps.

Anything you installed from a command line still had to be removed using the traditional Windows Add/Remove Programs dialog. But this is no longer the case from Windows Package Manager v0.2.10191 Previewwhich adds experimental support for uninstalling apps.

Since the feature is still experimental, it needs to be enabled. After installing the latest version of Windows Package Manager, you can enable uninstallation support by:

  • Type “winget settings” (without quotes) then press Enter to open the Settings file in Notepad or another text editor
  • Add the following text to the settings file, then save and close the file:
"experimentalFeatures": {
       "uninstall": true

Once done, you can use the package manager to begin the process of uninstalling almost any software on your computer by typing “winget uninstall “. But there are a few things to keep in mind.

First, the Windows package manager will launch the program uninstaller, which means you can start the process from the command line, but you’ll probably end it using an interface graphic user.

Second, the uninstall command is very picky with names. I was able to install VLC media player by typing:

winget install vlc

But to uninstall the same program, I had to type

winget uninstall "vlc media player 3.0.11 (64-bit)"

You can, however, get a full list of installed apps and their proper names by typing “winget uninstall”, which may help. But honestly, it’s probably quicker to launch the Windows Add/Remove Program utility at this point.

Nevertheless, it’s nice to see that Microsoft developers are still working on the Windows Package Manager, and hopefully one day it can become a useful tool for adding and removing programs using a keyboard .

via Windows Central and @DenelonMs

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