Fully uninstall your Adobe installation with Adobe Reader and Acrobat Cleaner Tool
It’s one of the most frustrating of PC problems. An application isn’t working properly; you try to reinstall or upgrade, but there’s some error and you’re told to uninstall first; so you try to uninstall, but that fails as well, before recommending you try the very same reinstall that failed in the first place.
When an installation is corrupted like this then you could try to forcibly remove it with something like Revo Uninstaller. It’s worth checking to see whether the original developer has a manual cleanup tool available, though, as that should be more reliable. And so if you need to remove a problematic Adobe installation, say, you should turn first to the Adobe Reader and Acrobat Cleaner Tool.
As you’ll guess from the name, this small portable program aims to fully remove Adobe Reader or Adobe Acrobat, all its files, folders and Registry keys, including settings or preferences which might normally be preserved after an uninstall.
Beware, though – this only works with stand-alone installations, not anything that’s come as part of Creative Suite (or any other Adobe suite). And it’s only for Reader and Acrobat 10.x and 11.x builds.
If that’s not an issue, though, everything else about the program will be very straightforward. It starts with the very small download, for instance (651 KB). And of course there’s no need to install the Cleaner Tool itself: just unzip and run.
The program itself is just a standard wizard, with only a few steps to follow. Read and approve the EULA; decide what you want to remove; watch as the Cleaner Tool goes to work, and optionally check the log for details on everything it’s done.
Behind the scenes the Cleaner does seem to be quite smart, though. If there’s a problem detecting your Adobe installation folder, for instance, it doesn’t fail or give up, and instead asks you to point it in the right direction.
In our experience Adobe installations are really quite reliable, and so hopefully the Adobe Reader and Acrobat Cleaner Tool is something you’ll never need. If you do run into uninstall problems, though, the program is a good alternative to the regular uninstaller, and should remove your application in just a few seconds.