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How do I cleanup the registry after a failed Java uninstall?


This article applies to:
  • Platform(s): Windows 8, Windows 7, Vista, Windows XP

Sometimes attempts to uninstall specific versions of Java through the Windows Add/Remove program, leave behind some Java entries in the registry that are not fully removed. These left behind registry entries can cause problems in installing a new version of Java.

The following are two methods to cleanup registry entries left behind due to an incomplete uninstall process:
  • Microsoft Fix it utility (Recommended Method)
  • Manual Registry Edit

Recommended Method: Microsoft Fix it utility

Run the Microsoft Fix it utility to repair corrupted registry keys that prevents programs from being completely uninstalled or blocking new installations and updates.

Manually edit the registry (Use this only if the Fix It utility does not work)

alert iconIncorrectly editing your registry may severely damage your system. You should back up any valued data from your computer before making changes to the registry.

You can use the File->Export functionality of the registry editor to save the registry key before deleting. Then, in case you deleted the wrong registry key, you can restore the registry from your saved backup file, by using the File->Import functionality in the Windows Registry Editor.

  1. Go to Start and then Run
  2. Type in regedit in the edit field
  3. Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE/Software/Microsoft/Windows/CurrentVersion/Uninstall
  4. Under this Uninstall folder you will find many registry entries within curly brackets.
  5. Click on Edit tab and then Find
    Note: Highlight Uninstall folder before performing search for particular registry.
  6. Enter version string as value to find corresponding registry entry to be deleted.
  7. Once you find registry key, highlight that key and then Right click on it and choose Delete
  8. Confirm the delete and click Yes
Steps for finding registry keys for any version of Java 7
Follow format 7.0.xxx
where xxx can be 100, 120, 130, 140 and so on.
for example:
  • Type 7.0.100 in search field, finds registry key for Java7 update 10
  • Type 7.0.120 in search field, finds registry key for Java7 update 12
  • Type 7.0.180 in search field, finds registry key for Java7 update 18
Steps for finding registry keys for any version of Java 6
Follow format 6.0.xxx
where xxx can be 100, 120, 130, 140 and so on.
for example:
  • Type 6.0.100 in search field, finds registry key for Java6 update 10
  • Type 6.0.120 in search field, finds registry key for Java6 update 12
  • Type 6.0.180 in search field, finds registry key for Java6 update 18
Steps for finding registry keys for any version of Java 1.5
Follow format 1.5.0.xxx
where xxx can be 100, 120, 130, 140 and so on.
for example:
  • Type 1.5.0.100 in search field, finds registry key for jre1.5.0_01
  • Type 1.5.0.120 in search field, finds registry key for jre1.5.0_12
  • Type 1.5.0.180 in search field, finds registry key for jre1.5.0_18
Steps for finding registry keys for any version of Java 1.4
Follow format 1.4.2_xxx
where xxx can be 01, 12, 13, 14 and so on.
for example:
  • Type 1.4.2_01 in search field, finds registry key for jre1.4.0_01
  • Type 1.4.2_12 in search field, finds registry key for jre1.4.0_12
  • Type 1.4.2_18 in search field, finds registry key for jre1.4.0_18

RELATED INFORMATION

Registry Back up (Microsoft)
» Windows 7 Back up the registry
» Windows Vista Back up the registry
» Windows XP Back up and restore the registry


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