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Chocolatey Uninstall Extension


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This package was approved by moderator gep13 on 7/12/2016.

This package provides helper functions installed as a Chocolatey extension. These functions may be used in Chocolatey install/uninstall scripts by declaring this package a dependency in your package's nuspec.

  <dependency id="chocolatey-uninstall.extension" />


Get-UninstallRegistryKey -- retrieve registry keys for use during uninstall of Chocolatey packages

  1. To use, add the following to chocolateyUninstall.ps1, setting $softwareName to the name as seen in Control Panel's "Programs and Features"

$softwareName = "Example Name"
[array]$key = Get-UninstallRegistryKey -SoftwareName $softwareName

  1. The found registry key's properties are accessible by dot notation. For example, $key.UninstallString

To install Chocolatey Uninstall Extension, run the following command from the command line or from PowerShell:

C:\> choco install chocolatey-uninstall.extension --version 1.1.0

To upgrade Chocolatey Uninstall Extension, run the following command from the command line or from PowerShell:

C:\> choco upgrade chocolatey-uninstall.extension --version 1.1.0


  • extensions\Get-UninstallRegistryKey.psm1 Show
    function Get-UninstallRegistryKey {
    Retrieve registry key(s) for system-installed applications from an 
    exact or wildcard search.
    This function will attempt to retrieve a matching registry key for an
    already installed application, usually to be used with a 
    chocolateyUninstall.ps1 automation script.
    The function also prevents `Get-ItemProperty` from failing when 
    handling wrongly encoded registry keys.
    .PARAMETER SoftwareName
    Part or all of the Display Name as you see it in Programs and Features.
    It should be enough to be unique.
    If the display name contains a version number, such as "Launchy (2.5)", 
    it is recommended you use a fuzzy search `"Launchy (*)"` (the wildcard `*`)
    so if Launchy auto-updates or is updated outside of chocolatey, the 
    uninstall script will not fail.
    Take care not to abuse fuzzy/glob pattern searches. Be conscientious of
    programs that may have shared or common root words to prevent overmatching.
    "SketchUp*" would match two keys with software names "SketchUp 2016" and 
    "SketchUp Viewer" that are different programs released by the same company.
    This function searches registry objects and returns PSCustomObject of the
    matched key's properties.
    Retrieve properties with dot notation, for example: $key.UninstallString
    This helper reduces the number of lines one would have to write to 
    retrieve registry keys to 1 line. It also prevents Get-ItemProperty from
    failing when handling wrongly encoded registry keys.
    Using this function in a package requires adding the extension as a
    dependency. Add the following to the nuspec:
      <dependency id="chocolatey-uninstall.extension" />
    [array]$key = Get-UninstallRegistryKey -SoftwareName "VLC media player"
    Exact match: software name in Programs and Features is "VLC media player"
    [array]$key = Get-UninstallRegistryKey -SoftwareName "Gpg4win (*)"
    Version match: software name is "Gpg4Win (2.3.0)"
    [array]$key = Get-UninstallRegistryKey -SoftwareName "SketchUp [0-9]*"
    Version match: software name is "SketchUp 2016"
    Note that the similar software name "SketchUp Viewer" would not be matched.
        [Parameter(Mandatory=$true, Position=0, ValueFromPipeline=$true)]
        [string] $softwareName,
        [Parameter(ValueFromRemainingArguments = $true)][Object[]] $ignoredArguments
      Write-Debug "Running 'Get-UninstallRegistryKey' for `'$env:ChocolateyPackageName`' with SoftwareName:`'$softwareName`'";
      $ErrorActionPreference = 'Stop'
      $local_key       = 'HKCU:\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\*'
      $machine_key     = 'HKLM:\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\*'
      $machine_key6432 = 'HKLM:\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\*'
      Write-Verbose "Retrieving all uninstall registry keys"
      [array]$keys = Get-ChildItem -Path @($machine_key6432, $machine_key, $local_key) `
                                   -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue
      Write-Debug "Registry uninstall keys on system: $($keys.Count)"
      Write-Debug "Error handling check: `'Get-ItemProperty`' fails if a registry key is encoded incorrectly."
      [int]$maxAttempts = $keys.Count
      for ([int]$attempt = 1; $attempt -le $maxAttempts; $attempt++) {
        [bool]$success = $FALSE
        try {
          [array]$foundKey = Get-ItemProperty -Path $keys.PsPath `
                                              -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue `
                             | Where-Object { $_.DisplayName -like $softwareName }
          $success = $TRUE
        } catch {
          Write-Debug "Found bad key."
          foreach ($key in $keys){ try{ Get-ItemProperty $key.PsPath > $null }catch{ $badKey = $key.PsPath }}
          Write-Verbose "Skipping bad key: $badKey"
          [array]$keys = $keys | Where-Object { $badKey -NotContains $_.PsPath }
        if ($success) { break; }
        if ($attempt -eq 10) {
          Write-Warning "Found more than 10 bad registry keys. Run command again with `'--verbose --debug`' for more info."
          Write-Debug "Each key searched should correspond to an installed program. It is very unlikely to have more than a few programs with incorrectly encoded keys, if any at all. This may be indicative of one or more corrupted registry branches."
      Write-Debug "Found $($foundKey.Count) uninstall registry key(s) with SoftwareName:`'$softwareName`'";
      return $foundKey

Virus Scan Results

In cases where actual malware is found, the packages are subject to removal. Software sometimes has false positives. Moderators do not necessarily validate the safety of the underlying software, only that a package retrieves software from the official distribution point and/or validate embedded software against official distribution point (where distribution rights allow redistribution).

Chocolatey Pro provides runtime protection from possible malware.


This package has no dependencies.

Package Maintainer(s)

Software Author(s)

  • dtgm
  • ferventcoder


© 2016 Chocolatey Core Team Package Contributors


Release Notes


Bug fixes
  • Not building array properly; fails if more than one bad key
  • Not reporting correct key
  • Try to remove all bad keys found.
  • (reporting) add warning if more than 10 bad keys are found
  • (reporting) no registry keys matched SoftwareName

Version History

Version Downloads Last updated Status
Chocolatey Uninstall Extension 1.1.0 26057 Saturday, June 25, 2016 approved

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