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Installing and uninstalling programs can be easy and quick when it’s just a one-off, but what about when you need to perform this action in bulk? It can be a hassle and a time consuming process, so we’re going to teach you how to do it in a flash.

There’s nothing inherently wrong with installing programs in turn from the developer’s website or using the native Windows uninstaller to remove them. Actually, it’s sometimes better for single instances to do it like that. But it’s not efficient en masse.

Installing In Bulk

Installing a single program might take a couple of minutes out of your day, but imagine how much time you’re burning when doing that multiple times over. The problem is that you have to sit at the desk, manually clicking through the prompts and downloading the necessary files.

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This could happen when you get a new system, wipe your current one or are setting up a network of devices. There’s really no need to go through the repetitiveness thanks to an excellent program called Ninite.

Ninite is a mass installer Ninite - Easily Install All Your Favorite Free Apps In One Go Ninite - Easily Install All Your Favorite Free Apps In One Go Read More  that’s easy to use and works like a charm. You simply select the programs you want to install, download one executable and Ninite will do the rest.

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Downloading And Using Ninite

First of all, head to the Ninite website. You’ll be presented with a list of some of the most popular programs on the web – browsers, messengers, image editors 10 Free Photo Editor Tools To Make The Most Of Your Shots 10 Free Photo Editor Tools To Make The Most Of Your Shots Whatever happened to all the snapshots you've taken in the past? If you've got plans and ideas, here are some great Windows and some cross platform tools to process them with. Read More , storage utilities and more. It obviously can’t cover everything under the sun, but chances are it’ll have nearly everything you need.

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Tick the programs you want and click the bright green Get Installer button. A unique exe will be compiled and all you have to do is run it. That’s literally it. You don’t have to press anything else. Go off, make a cup of tea, and everything will be installed without your input.

One great thing about Ninite is that it automatically detects the bit version of your operating system 4 Easy Ways to Know If You're on a 64-Bit Version of Windows 4 Easy Ways to Know If You're on a 64-Bit Version of Windows Are you using a processor that supports a 64-bit operating system and are you running a 64-bit operating system? The average off-and-on PC user probably doesn't know the answers to these questions, although they should.... Read More , meaning compatibility isn’t a worry. It’ll also decline any bloatware A Simple Checklist To Safely Installing Free Software Without All The Junk A Simple Checklist To Safely Installing Free Software Without All The Junk Picture this - you've just found this awesome free software that you are stoked about because of all that it can do for you, but when you install it, you discover that it is packed... Read More  the installer might want to attach, like toolbars, meaning you get exactly what you ask for.

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Ninite is purely an installer, so it won’t clog up your system. You can keep the executable on your system, though – simply run it again and all the programs will be updated if necessary. And because all the files are automatically updated by bots, you can be safe in the knowledge it’s the latest version.

Uninstalling In Bulk

On the opposite end of the scale, you might want to remove a load of programs 6 Ways to Free Up Space on Your Windows Computer 6 Ways to Free Up Space on Your Windows Computer Clutter can be a big downer on productivity. Over time, files get lost, programs go unused, and suddenly, your once spacious hard drive is packed with useless things and you have to clean it up.... Read More all at once. The Windows uninstaller is serviceable, but it isn’t excellent. It can sometimes leave folders and bits of data left over; occasionally it might run into a bug that stops it uninstalling something altogether.

There are lots of different programs available that’ll all help you uninstall in bulk, but we’ll mainly take a look at two of the most popular.

Absolute Uninstaller

Absolute Uninstaller (our review) Absolute Uninstaller: Don't Settle For The Default, A Better Solution For Software Removal [Windows] Absolute Uninstaller: Don't Settle For The Default, A Better Solution For Software Removal [Windows] When was the last time you wanted to uninstall something from your computer? Was it easy to do? Could you find the program to uninstall in the Windows default uninstall tool? Could you even find... Read More is a tool to remove programs without a trace.

Navigate to the Absolute Uninstaller website and download the free program that is still regularly updated. When you run the program it’ll compile a list of everything that you’ve got installed on your system.

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Although you can remove individual programs, that’s not what we’re here for. Hit the Batch Uninstall button and checkboxes will appear next to every program. Mark everything you want removed and press the Uninstall Checked Program… button when you’re ready.

Absolute Uninstaller can do more than that, however. Although you might know which specific programs you want gone, you also have the ability to sort them by those recently installed, rarely used and large in file size. If you’re looking to clear hard drive space or spring clean then those functions will come in very handy.

IObit Uninstaller

Pop over to the official website for IObit Uninstaller and download the free and wonderfully small file. On launch it’ll show everything installed, including the size, install date and version.

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One of the first things you’ll notice about the uninstaller is how slick it looks, but that doesn’t mean it’s skimped on features. To remove in bulk, tick Batch Uninstall and checkboxes will appear in the program list. Tick those to bin and click the glowing green Uninstall button when it’s time to go.

Like Absolute, IObit also lets you sort by programs recently installed, large in size and infrequently used. The program was recently updated with some powerful new options IObit Uninstaller 3.1 Now Available With Powerful New Options IObit Uninstaller 3.1 Now Available With Powerful New Options Read More , too. If you play games on your computer, for example, then you might be surprised just how much space they take up – and if you don’t play them anymore, it’s probably best to take them off your drive.

There’s No Need To Pay

Absolute and IObit not only work well, but they’re also entirely free. You’ll find many more uninstallers on the market, but you might be surprised to hear that some of them cost.

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This is usually because they offer more advanced features than just the ability to bulk uninstall. While that serves a purpose for some, if all you’re looking to do is remove lots of programs at once then there’s definitely no need to pay 14 Free & Open Source Alternatives For Paid Software 14 Free & Open Source Alternatives For Paid Software Don't waste money on software for personal use! Not only do free alternatives exist, they most likely offer all the features you need and may be easier and safer to use. Read More for that to happen.

Do you think we missed Revo Uninstaller? Yes, we have previously recommended it as one of the best third party uninstallers 3 Best Third-Party Uninstallers & Why You Need Them 3 Best Third-Party Uninstallers & Why You Need Them To uninstall a Windows program, you can’t just hit 'Delete’ -- you need to run the software’s uninstaller. Unfortunately, the 'Uninstall a program’ option in the Windows Control Panel does not always completely remove it... Read More . Unfortunately, mass uninstall is a premium feature.

Removing Preinstalled Windows 8 & Windows 10 Apps

This one is just for those running Windows 8 or Windows 10. You might have noticed that the operating system comes with a lot of apps preinstalled. And if you’ve upgraded to 8.1 then that list has grown even more.

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That’s fine if you make use of them, but some users might consider them bloatware How To Remove Ads From Native Windows 8 Apps How To Remove Ads From Native Windows 8 Apps In-app adverts have become a bit of a problem for Windows 8 users, particularly for those native Microsoft apps that you’ve already paid for. With third party apps you get the option of upgrading to... Read More  and want them gone. That’s where a handy and free utility called Windows 8 App Remover comes in. You can bulk uninstall all the Windows apps like Bing Finance, Reading List and Zune Music.

Launch the utility, select the apps it’s time to nuke and then hit Remove Apps. You can Select All, but that’s not recommended – it’ll remove some apps like Communication that can be difficult to get back if needs be. Once the process has begun it won’t take long before the apps have been removed from your system entirely.

It’s Time To Bulk Up

The chances are, once you’ve discovered the ability to install and uninstall in bulk, then you won’t go back to the standard method. It’s just so quick and simple to do it all at once. System admins will find the ability to deploy the same set of programs to multiple computers a joy, while trigger-happy installers will love the ability to swiftly ditch some useless downloads.

Not sure which programs you should remove Know What Software To Uninstall With Should I Remove It? Know What Software To Uninstall With Should I Remove It? Here at MakeUseOf, we've put out many articles reviewing and highlighting software that allows you to completely and cleanly uninstall applications from your system. One issue many of you run into is not knowing which... Read More ? There’s an app called ‘Should I Remove It?‘ for that!

Do you use a bulk installer or uninstaller and if so which program do you recommend?

Image Credits: Forex Money for Exchange in Currency Bank by epSos .de, licensed under CC BY 2.0

  1. Anonymous
    November 5, 2016 at 12:56 am

    Operating systems such as GNU/Linux come with a built-in package manager, which can do batch operations like these out of the box.

  2. Paul Andrew Anderson
    August 10, 2015 at 6:49 pm

    As others have mentioned, it does not actually batch uninstall anything; it simply lines up the programs you want to uninstall, but you still have to set in front of the computer the entire time and click the same "Windows Uninstall" pop-up windows that are typical of manual uninstall. If you are fast with a mouse you could probably do them, one at a time, just as fast. This program actually took longer for me because I kept getting up and doing other things, and it would basically freeze waiting for me to click the next uninstall "Yes" buttons. Now, I understand the conflicts that could arise from attempting to make multiple changes to the registry, but if that is the case then why this program? Well, when you install it, at the end it asks if you want other Glary programs installed, and I deselected everything. But I must assume that the motive for the free program is information farming; hence, the potential spam or bloat ware. But I guess it is not any better or worse than using Revo Uninstaller or Ccleaner.

  3. Jeong-hun Sin
    May 29, 2015 at 3:03 am

    Do not install IObit Uninstaller. I tried it, and it was a classic example of crappy software. It did: 0) Crappy heavily-skinned slow bloated user interface. 1) Add its context menu item in Explorer. 2) Add its button in the "Uninstall or change a program" window. 3) Running a "Live Update" service which starts "automatically" and running all the time. Who the freaking heck wants to automatically run an updater for an application uninstaller all the time? All I wanted was to uninstall applications sequentially (batch), which Microsoft should have provided with Windows, and IOrbit Uninstaller messed my system without my permission. Now I uninstalled it and trying the Absolute Uninstaller.

  4. JC
    March 12, 2015 at 4:31 pm

    IObit comes bundled with crapware which can't be opted out of. It also installs several hooks into the underlying operating system. All in all it causes more problems than it solves.

    • Jeong-hun Sin
      May 29, 2015 at 3:16 am

      How ironic. I installed it to uninstall unnecessary stuffs at once, and bam, I got even worse craps.

  5. m0fugga
    January 14, 2015 at 4:34 pm

    I don't appreciate the spamware IObit's uninstaller shoves down your throat without asking. I'm running this to get rid of factory and user installed crap in the first place. I don't need the publisher of the uninstaller putting more crap on for me to remove. Also, all it really does is sequentially run the different installers. You still have to click Yes, No, Next, etc. Not much help really.

    I tried Absolute Uninstaller first in batch mode but it only uninstalled the first couple of programs and then bailed. Don't know what the deal with that one was.

    • Jeong-hun Sin
      May 29, 2015 at 3:12 am

      I tried to uninstall 4 items in batch mode with Absolute Uninstaller and it did so as I expected.

  6. grumpadmin
    January 1, 2015 at 5:56 pm

    We have switched to Linux mostly, but there is one application we need that only runs on Windows and for that we have a Windows partition. To save space, we have 70 applications to uninstall on 15 laptops. Is there an uninstaller that does not require me to sit and babysit each and every uninstaller?

    IOBit batches it for me, but I have to confirm nearly every uninstall.

    I find it difficult to believe I was ever OK with using Windows. It's embarrassing, looking back on it.

  7. David Brown
    December 16, 2014 at 6:43 pm

    What is a good program to bulk down load windows updates for windows 7 ? anyone use one

    • Peter
      April 17, 2015 at 12:11 pm

      WSUS Offline

  8. jerfrank
    November 25, 2014 at 7:01 am

    sometimes, i installed some program, i cannot uninstall it.

    • Tina
      November 28, 2014 at 9:30 am

      If you cannot uninstall a program through Windows, you should try a third-party uninstaller like Revo Uninstaller.

  9. Bill
    October 30, 2014 at 12:59 pm

    None of this would be necessary if Windows had a sane packaging system, yet another reason not to use it.

    As for paying - sheesh

    • Joe
      November 1, 2014 at 12:08 am

      I agree with you, Bill. It'd be good for this to be a built-in Windows tool and I don't see a reason why it can't be. Windows 10, perhaps?

  10. Kai M.
    October 29, 2014 at 8:27 pm

    Nice article! Thanks for the tips. I prefer Revo Uninstaller http://http://www.revouninstaller.com/ to IOBit's version though as it is a portable app that doesn't have to be installed and can be run off a flash drive or from your desktop.

    • Tina
      November 14, 2014 at 9:47 am

      Kai, as mentioned in the article, we deliberately didn't include Revo Unisntaller because bulk uninstalling is a premium feature. The tools mentioned in the article are all free.

  11. hazem elsaiegh
    October 29, 2014 at 2:09 pm

    great post

  12. likefunbutnot
    October 29, 2014 at 1:23 pm

    I'm a big fan of PC Decrapifier. I primarily use it for malware removal, but it's useful when someone brings me some or other crappy consumer laptop as well.

    • Joe
      November 1, 2014 at 12:07 am

      Thanks for the recommendation, likefunbutnot! I hate when systems come pre-installed with junk programs that most people likely don't wont/will never use. It's like buying a new house and finding that someone has put some dodgy furniture in there before you arrive.

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