Most programs come with their own uninstallers, but sometimes these don't do a very thorough job, leaving behind temporary files, unused registry entries, and other detritus. These remnants take up space on your PC, and can cause conflicts if you want to install a newer version of the same software at a later date. That's where Revo Uninstaller Free comes in.
Type: Software uninstaller
Developer: VS Revo Group
Operating system: Windows
Revo Uninstaller scans your PC for installed programs and lets you remove every trace of them – including the bits that would normally be left behind.
The free version of Revo Uninstaller has several limitations compared to the premium edition (there's no way to uninstall multiple programs at once, for example, and it can't monitor system changes in real time) but that's to be expected – the free versions of Iobit Uninstaller and Wise Program Uninstaller don't offer those tools either.
If you just need to remove one particularly stubborn program, you might like to try installing the free trial of Revo Uninstaller Pro and using the powerful Force Uninstall option.
When you select the option to download Revo Uninstaller Free, you'll be taken to a page offering you a trial of Revo Uninstaller Pro. You don't need to click this; the free version of the software will begin downloading automatically (the file is called revosetup.exe). It's a bit sneaky.
Once it's started, Revo Uninstaller Free looks like most other free uninstallers – just select a program from the list and click 'Uninstall' to remove it. Revo Uninstaller will create a System Restore Point before it begins, which is reassuring. The program's uninstaller will run as normal, after which you'll be offered three scanning options to look for mucky footprints left by the departed software – safe, moderate and advanced. You can hold your mouse over each of these for a description, but it's not too informative – safe mode performs an additional scan, moderate does an extended scan, and advanced offers a deep and thorough scan.
Whichever option you pick, once it's complete you'll see a list of found registry entries to delete, followed by leftover files and folders – all of which can be removed with a quick click.
This is all pretty logical, but Revo Uninstaller Free also offers a strange Hunter mode, which puts a crosshair on your desktop. Move this over a program's icon to uninstall it, stop it, or disable it at startup. It's really rather strange - performing the same tasks from a list seems much more logical.
Revo Uninstaller Free also includes links to Windows' own system maintenance tools (including defrag and task scheduler), tools for removing temporary browser and Microsoft Office files, and the conspiratorially named 'Evidence Remover' (a file shredder).
Revo Uninstaller Free is a perfectly good software uninstaller (though the Pro edition is vastly superior), but its extra tools are a strange bunch.