Information about the ability to uninstall Office updates

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SUMMARY

Until the release of the security update for Microsoft Word 2002 that is described in the Microsoft Knowledge Base article 895589, you could not remove Microsoft Office updates by using the Add or Remove Programs item in Control Panel. The only method to remove Office updates was to remove the Office product, and then reinstall the product. With the release of the security update for Microsoft Word 2002 that is described in article 895589, Microsoft introduced the ability to remove certain Office updates by using the Add or Remove Programs tool.

INTRODUCTION

This article contains more information about the following topics that are related to the removal of Office updates:
  • The requirements to remove Office updates by using the Add or Remove Programs tool.
  • How to determine whether an Office update can be removed by using the Add or Remove Programs tool.
  • Known issue that may occur when you try to remove Office updates.
  • How to remove an update by using a Microsoft Windows Installer command.
Note Some Office updates cannot be removed. Some examples include the following:
  • Service packs
  • Office server product updates
  • Some updates to Office shared components. In this case, the Microsoft Knowledge Base article that describes the update notes that the update cannot be removed.

MORE INFORMATION

The requirements to remove Office updates by using the Add or Remove Programs tool

The computer that is running Microsoft Office must meet the following prerequisites to use the Add or Remove Programs tool to remove Office updates:
  • Microsoft Windows Installer version 3.0 or version 3.1 must be installed before you install the removable Office update.

    Notes
    • Microsoft Windows Installer version 3.1 is preferred.

      For more information about how to obtain Windows Installer 3.1 (v2), click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
      893803 Windows Installer 3.1 v2 (3.1.4000.2435) is available
    • Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) already includes Microsoft Windows Installer 3.0.3790.2180. Additionally, the 2007 Microsoft Office suites require Windows XP SP2.
    • Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 1 (SP1) already includes Microsoft Windows Installer 3.1.4000.1830.
    • Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 already includes Microsoft Windows Installer 4.00.6001.0
  • The computer must be running Windows Vista, Windows XP SP2, Windows Server 2008, or Windows Server 2003 SP1.

    Note When you install either of these service packs, the Add or Remove Programs tool is updated to display Windows Installer updates under the product name.
  • Removing an Office XP update requires the original installation source to be available. Removing an Office 2003 update requires the original installation source to be available if the Local Installation Source feature in Office 2003 Setup is not used. For more information about the Local Install Source feature in Office 2003, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
    830168 Frequently asked questions about the Local Install Source feature in Office 2003

How to determine whether an Office update can be removed by using the Add or Remove Programs tool

The security update for Word 2002 that is described in the Microsoft Knowledge Base article 895589 was the first Office update that included the ability to remove the update. Security update 895589 was released on July 12, 2005. Office updates that were released after July 12, 2005 also include the option to remove the update, unless otherwise noted in the release documentation.

Windows XP and Windows Server 2003

To determine whether an Office update can be removed by using the Add or Remove Programs tool, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, click Run, type appwiz.cpl in the Open box, and then click OK.
  2. In the left column, click Change or Remove Programs.
  3. Click to select the Show Updates check box.
  4. In the Currently installed programs and updates list, click the update that you want to remove.

    If the Remove button is available, you can remove the Office update.
Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008

To determine whether you can use the Add or Remove Programs tool to remove an Office update, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, type appwiz.cpl in the Start Search box, and then press ENTER.
  2. Under Tasks, click View installed updates.
  3. Locate and select the update in the list.
  4. If the update can be removed, the Uninstall option will be available in the toolbar.

Known issue that may occur when you try to remove Office updates

The computer meets the prerequisites, but you cannot remove an update.

This issue may occur if the computer did not meet the prerequisites at the time that the update was installed. The computer must be running Windows Installer version 3.0 or version 3.1 before you install the removable update.

How to remove an update by using a Windows Installer command

There are some cases in which you do not have the option to remove an update when you use the Add or Remove Programs tool. This issue occurs even though the following conditions are true:
  • The update was released after July 12, 2005.
  • The update includes the ability to remove the update.
If this issue occurs, you can remove the update by using Windows Installer 3.1. The Windows Installer 3.1 redistributable system component will install on the following operating systems:
  • Microsoft Windows 2000 Service Pack 3 (SP3) and Microsoft Windows 2000 Service Pack 4 (SP4)
  • Windows XP original release version, Windows XP Service Pack 1 (SP1), and Windows XP SP2
  • Windows Server 2003 original release version

    Note Windows Server 2003 SP1 already includes Windows Installer 3.1.
For more information about how to obtain Windows Installer 3.1 (v2), click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
893803 Windows Installer 3.1 v2 (3.1.4000.2435) is available

Command syntax

With Windows Installer 3.1, you can remove an update by typing a command in the Run dialog box. For example, to remove an update, click Start, click Run, type the following command in the Open box, and then click OK:
msiexec /package {product_code} /uninstall "full_path_to_.msp_file" /qb
Notes
  • When you try to remove an Office update, you may be prompted for your Office source CD-ROM.
  • The following explains the placeholders for this command:
    • The product_code placeholder represents the product code GUID that is associated with the Office product that you installed an update for.

      For more information about how to determine the product code GUID in Microsoft Office 2003, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
      832672 Description of numbering scheme for product code GUIDs in Office 2003
      For more information about how to determine the product code GUID in Microsoft Office XP, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
      302663 Description of the numbering scheme for product code GUIDs for Office XP programs
    • The full_path_to_.msp_file placeholder represents the full path of the update package (.msp file).
  • The following explains the parameters for this command:

    The /qb switch. If you use the /qb switch, you are prompted if an update is not removable. If you use the /passive switch, you are not prompted if an update is not removable. If you use the /qb switch and if an update is not removable, you receive the following message:
    Uninstallation of the patch package is not supported.
For example, to remove an update where the product code is "{0C9840E7-7F0B-C648-10F0-4641926FE463}", and the path of the .msp file is "C:\Update\file name.msp", you would type the following in the Run dialog box:
msiexec /package {0C9840E7-7F0B-C648-10F0-4641926FE463} /uninstall "c:\update\file name.msp" /qb
To obtain the full path of the .msp file, follow these steps:
  1. Locate the .exe file that you used to install the Office update. If you do not have the file saved to the hard disk drive, download and then save the Office update to a folder on the computer.
  2. Use a file extraction utility, such as WinZip, to extract the files from the .exe update file.

    One of the files that is extracted should be a .msp file. This is the file that you must point to when you run the command to remove the Office update.
Note Instead of the full path of the .msp file, you can also specify the patch GUID. For example, to remove an update where the product code is "{0C9840E7-7F0B-C648-10F0-4641926FE463}", and the patch GUID is "{EB8C947C-78B2-85A0-644D-86CEEF8E07C0}", you would type the following in the Run dialog box:
msiexec /package {0C9840E7-7F0B-C648-10F0-4641926FE463} /uninstall {EB8C947C-78B2-85A0-644D-86CEEF8E07C0} /qb
The third-party products that this article discusses are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, about the performance or reliability of these products.

REFERENCES

For more information about how to remove Office updates that are installed by using Windows Installer version 3.0 or version 3.1, visit the following Microsoft Developer Network (MSDN) Web site:
http://msdn2.microsoft.com/en-us/library/aa372104.aspx

Properties

Article ID: 903771 - Last Review: September 12, 2011 - Revision: 7.0
APPLIES TO
  • Microsoft Office Small Business Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office Basic Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office Access 2003
  • Microsoft Office InfoPath 2003
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  • Microsoft Office XP Small Business Edition
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  • Microsoft Access 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Excel 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft FrontPage 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Outlook 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Word 2002
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  • Microsoft Office Professional Edition 2003
  • Microsoft Office Home and Business 2010
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  • Microsoft Excel 2010
  • Microsoft Word 2010
  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2010
  • Microsoft Publisher 2010
  • Microsoft Visio Professional 2010
  • Microsoft Visio Standard 2010
  • Microsoft Outlook 2010
  • Microsoft OneNote 2010
Keywords: 
kbuninstall kbsetup kbupdateissue kbwindowsinstaller kbhowto KB903771

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