Add/remove not showing the programs list

By harshbedi ·
hi everybody...Recently when i tried to uninstall a software from add/remove i found that the name of that software had been moved from there even though i am using that software...Moreover there was no uninstall tab when i selected a program(in the depleted ms windows in the list) to just showed me the details of that program and the amount of space occupied by it...Can anybody please help me in solving this weird problem??

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System Restore

by ctrservices In reply to Add/remove not showing th ...

A newly installed program could corrupted part of the Registry. Try doing a System Restore (Start--Help and Support--"undo changes to your computer with System Restore"--follow the wizard and pick a restore date prior to when you think the problem started).

If a restore doesn't work (or is turned off), restart the PC, tap the F8 until you see a menu, choose Safe Mode, and scan with a spyware checker (like Spybot). If you don't have an updated checker already installed, you can try to install one, but you may have to reinstall the OS if it doesn't set up properly. If the scanner reports anything, delete all and rescan (also in Safe Mode) to confirm that no other infections are found.

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weird. yes, do scan for viruii and spyware

by sgt_shultz In reply to System Restore

what program exactly? any others giving this problem. does safe mode show same thing? (not sure you can get into add/remove in safe mode). have you tried reinstalling the program then seeing if you could uninstall it? to answer your question i have never seen or heard of this problem. i have seen Windows installer get messed up and show no programs or only a few in add/remove. but never one with a blank name.

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Here are the steps that have worked for me...

by CaptBilly1Eye In reply to Add/remove not showing th ...

adding to the good suggestions already made...

I've run into several similar situations where programs were missing from the Add/Remove Programs list or where there was a huge blank space between the ones listed. Sometimes, it was a bad installer from some software that was recently added and uninstalling that program resolved the issue (later a registry tweak to the offending programs installation record provided the ultimate fix).
In other situations, performing a XP System Restore corrected it (Start - All Programs - Accessories - System Tools - System Restore).
While in many cases using Add/Remove Manager or X-Setup Pro were the cure.

Add/Remove Manager is a free tool that was designed for easily removing listings in Add/Remove Programs that remain after an un-install. But I've found it helps in this situation as well. In that it will often have blanks listed that can be removed to get rid of the huge blank area. Be aware that it does not uninstall programs, it just removes the listing.

X-Setup Pro is shareware with a free trial version. It is a feature-filled tweaking tool for XP that has a handy tool you can use to investigate Add/Remove listings (In Classic mode under System-Software Installation). Warning - Use extreme caution when using system tweaks. It's always a good idea to have a valid backup and a XP System Restore Point before making changes recommended by so-called 'tweakers.'

and in still other cases, it was a trojan virus.
Here is a free on-line scan offered by BitDefender: .
And another by TrendMicro: .

I would also use this tool: RootKitRevealer (
and/or AVG's free RootKit detector and Remover: (

If you determine that there is indeed a virus involved and which one it is,
I recommend you go here: .
TrendMicro has always been my favorite source for virus information and removal.

My second choice would be BitDefender. Here's a link to their extensive library of free removal tools:

Please let me know what ultimately resolves the issue.
Good Luck

<edited for blasted typos>

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problem is still there

by harshbedi In reply to Here are the steps that h ...

thanx for ur helpful advices but the problem has not been resolved completely...i did the system restore and the problem was gone..But when i rebooted my computer and checked the add/remove,the list was gone...i checked for the viruses(by NOD32) and spywares(by spyware doctor)and both of them showed no infections....i dont want to format my comp as i have to reinstall all the softwares which is a painstaking task...

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A few questions...

by CaptBilly1Eye In reply to problem is still there

Did you try Add/Remove Manager and X-Setup Pro?
If so, what do they show?

I know it is a pain, but if you want to make sure there is no virus involved, I recommend you follow my previous directions. The tools you mentioned are not thorough enough.

Beyond that, you mentioned 'the list is gone.' Is it completely empty? How long are you waiting for the Add/Remove window to load the program list?
On my system, it takes up to several minutes for the list to populate after the window first opens and I have a very fast system. The time it takes depends on how many programs you have installed and the speed of your system.

To thoroughly check for spyware/adware/malware, here are excellent tools:


Spybot Search & Destroy:


X-Cleaner Micro:

If all else fails, you may need to perform a Repair Reinstall of XP. This would not effect the programs currently installed if done properly. You would however need to reinstall all the Windows Updates afterward and all current System Restore points will be removed.
For step-by-step instructions to do a Repair Install, go here, scroll through the list and click on How To Run a Repair Install.

Good Luck.

[It is greatly appreciated if you tag all useful responses as 'Helpful' by opening those posts and clicking the 'Mark Helpful' button at the bottom. That way, people with a similar situation in the future will be able to quickly see what ultimately helped. Thanks.]

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by harshbedi In reply to A few questions...

thanx billy...ur advice really helped me in solving this weird problem.....first i had a thorough scan with ur given tools and found that there were some spywares which were still affecting the computer..after that i restored my comp...and now with ur help it is working absolutely fine...thanx once again...

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No Problemo...

by CaptBilly1Eye In reply to thanx

I'm glad I could help.

Now that you finally get everything cleaned up and running smooth, here are great tools to help you avoid getting that garbage again:



and to quickly clean out the places where their installers usually hide before you shut down or reboot - ATF-Cleaner:

Thanks for the Thumbs Up.

- Billy

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download and install Windows Installer

by sgt_shultz In reply to problem is still there

...'redistributable' get it from
reinstalling the latest windows installer may do the trick. else i'd research this problem at this is a known and documented issue and you will see many steps to resolve there, most involve reinstalling the windows installer

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Just Checking...

by CaptBilly1Eye In reply to Add/remove not showing th ...

Were you able to resolve your issue?
If so, what was the fix?

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