Force uninstall of Visual Studio


While uninstalling Microsoft Visual Studio Ultimate 2015 Preview, it throws an error quoting "Microsoft Visual Studio Ultimate 2015 Preview has stopped working"

Message Content Include:

A problem caused the program to stop working correctly. Windows will close the program and notify you if a solution is available.

I googled and found a utility that uninstalls visual studio 2010 here but nothing exists for Visual Studio 2012, 2013 and 2015. My questions are:

Is there any generic utility that uninstalls Visual Studio by Version ?

Or Is there a way to forcefully uninstall visual studio 2012 onward without using the Program and Features menu?

4/8/2020 10:55:47 AM

Accepted Answer

I was running in to the same issue, but have just managed a full uninstall by means of trusty old CMD:

D:\vs_ultimate.exe /uninstall /force

Where D: is the location of your installation media (mounted iso, etc).

You could also pass /passive (no user input required - just progress displayed) or /quiet to the above command line.

EDIT: Adding link below to MSDN article mentioning that this forcibly removes ALL installed components.

Also, to ensure link rot doesn't invalidate this, adding brief text below from original article.

Starting with Visual Studio 2013, you can forcibly remove almost all components. A few core components – like the .NET Framework and VC runtimes – are left behind because of their ubiquity, though you can remove those separately from Programs and Features if you really want.

Warning: This will remove all components regardless of whether other products require them. This may cause other products to function incorrectly or not function at all.

Good luck!

1/3/2016 3:42:18 AM

If you don't have media, doing a dir /s vs_ultimate.exe from the root prompt will find it. Mine was in C:\ProgramData\Package Cache\{[guid]}. Once I navigated there and ran vs_ultimate.exe with the /uninstall and /force flags, the uninstaller ran

I opened the program "Command Prompt" with as administrator and search run "dir /s vs_ultimate.exe" in ProgramData folder and find path to vs_ultimate.exe file.

Then I changed my working directory to that path and ran vs_ultimate.exe /uninstall /force.

Finally its done.


Microsoft now has this:

I allowed a windows 10 update to go through that completely f****d VS2015 so I am trying this before having to resort to a rebuild. WT*. :-(


This is an odd solution, but it worked for me.

I wanted to uninstall Visual Studio 2015 and do a clean install afterwards, but when I tried to remove it through the Control Panel, it was giving me a generic error.

I fixed it by deleting the Visual Studio 2015 folder in Program Files (x86). After that, the Control Panel uninstall worked fine.


So Soumyaansh's Revo Uninstaller Pro fix worked for me :) ( After 2 days of troubleshooting other options {screams internally 😀} ).

I did run into the an issue with his method though, "Could not find a suitable SDK to target" even though I selected to install Visual Studio with custom settings and selected the SDK I wanted to install. You may need to download the Windows 10 Standalone SDK to resolved this, in order to develop UWP apps if you see this same error after reinstalling Visual Studio.

To do this

  1. Uninstall any Windows 10 SDKs that me on the system (the naming schem for them looks like Windows 10 SDK (WINDOWS_VERSION_NUMBER_HERE) -> Windows 10 SDK (14393) etc . . .). If there are no SDKs on your system go to step 2!
  2. All that's left is to download the SDKs you want by Checking out the SDK Archive for all available SDKs and you should be good to go in developing for the UWP!