Uninstalling Autodesk Software? Let’s Save You Some Time!

Increasingly, especially with Autodesk Industry Collections giving users access to 20+ applications, it’s not uncommon to have two or three versions of 10 or more Autodesk® products installed on a typical workstation. And each one of those products has language packs, libraries, enablers, add-ons, etc. This can result in dozens of installed Autodesk applications.

Installing the software (an article in and of itself, for another time) and eventually uninstalling can be a big task. Even uninstalling one release year of those products, when done manually, could mean running through 30 or more uninstallation wizards.

This article will guide you through making this process much easier and faster, and with less work. Whether you are uninstalling just one Autodesk application, all applications of a release year, or every Autodesk application, this guide will help you through the process.

Typical Windows Uninstall

The simplest way to uninstall, and the way you’ve likely uninstalled programs in the past, is by using the default Windows Uninstaller. This is a quick, simple way to remove a handful of programs, but requires you to pick each application one by one, running through each applications uninstaller steps. This can be a tedious process if you are trying to remove many different software titles and versions.

You can access the Windows Uninstaller by going to Control Panel -> Programs and Features (see Figure 1). If your control panel items are set to “View By: Category” you will find “Uninstall a Program” under the Programs section. Both ways get you to the same place. From the list of applications, find the application you want to uninstall, right-click on it, and select Uninstall. Follow the applications uninstallation steps and wait for it to complete. You cannot uninstall more than one application at a time, so you may have some waiting time between each uninstallation. If you are uninstalling more than a couple, this is not an efficient method!

Figure 1

Autodesk Uninstall Tool

If you have multiple Autodesk applications to uninstall, you can use the Autodesk Uninstall Tool (see Figure 2). This is a very handy tool that lists out each Autodesk application installed on your system, including utilities, enablers, material libraries, etc.

You simply check the box next to each item you want to uninstall and then click Uninstall at the bottom. The tool will then begin an unattended uninstallation of each application. As it moves through each item, the checkbox will change to a flashing red arrow, telling you it is working on that item. As it finishes each item, it will change to a green check mark, to tell you it is successfully uninstalled, or a red X to tell you the uninstall failed.

I have found that it doesn’t always list every Autodesk app and that often several uninstalls will fail. But for a quick bulk uninstall that is easy for a user to run, this tool is great.

Figure 2

WMIC Uninstall

The most versatile way to uninstall is by using the WMI command-line Windows Management Instrumentation Command (WMIC) utility. This utility can be used for a wide variety of tasks, one of which is uninstalling applications using the CALL command. This command can be customized to uninstall any selection of applications by searching based on two types of criteria: Vendor and Name.

To select Autodesk applications, you can make a call for any applications that has the vendor “Autodesk.” Since every Autodesk application has that in common, it’s a great way to select all Autodesk apps.

Note that some Autodesk applications list the vendor as “Autodesk” and some “Autodesk, Inc.” If you search with ‘Autodesk%’ the wildcard ‘%’ will grab both variations of the vendor name. You can then use other search terms to narrow down what you want to select, like a product year in the application name.

For example, the Vendor ‘Autodesk%’ and ‘%2018%’ in the product name would find all Autodesk applications with 2018 in the name. As in the vendor name search, the ‘%’ on either side of the year is a wildcard, telling the search to find anything with 2018 in the name, regardless of any characters to the left or right of it.

I will show you the syntax for three of the most common scenarios. Uninstalling ALL Autodesk applications, All from a particular release year, or from multiple release years. You can modify these to fit your specific uninstall needs.

To get started, you need to first open CMD with elevated permissions. (You can also use PowerShell if you prefer.) To open CMD, click the Start button and type CMD. You will see the command prompt in the list of applications, right-click on it and select “Run as Administrator.” If you do not run CMD elevated (Run as Administrator), you may get an error when it begins uninstalling.

In the Command prompt, type “WMIC” and hit enter. This will start up the WMIC utility. From here, simply enter the syntax for the command you want to run and hit Enter to run it. As is the case with any utility, syntax is very important. Be sure you don’t miss any spaces, quotations etc. in your command.  I typically use the /nointeractive switch, to make each uninstall process happen unattended.

In the list of commands below, don’t include the brackets, { } at the beginning and end—they are just here to encapsulate the command. 

Uninstall All Autodesk Applications:

{ product where "vendor like 'autodesk%'" call uninstall /nointeractive }

Uninstall 2017 Autodesk Applications:

{ product where "vendor like 'autodesk%' and name like '%2017%'" call uninstall /nointeractive }

Uninstall 2017 and 2018 Autodesk Applications:

{ product where "(name like '%2017%' or name like '%2018%') and (vendor like 'autodesk%')" call uninstall /nointeractive }

Figure 3

The WMIC call can be made on your local machine, a remote machine, or a list of remote machines.  The above commands will run on your local computer.

To uninstall on a remote computer, prefix the command with {/node:computername} where ‘computername’ is the hostname of the remote computer. For example: { /node:computername product where "vendor like 'autodesk%'" call uninstall /nointeractive  }

To uninstall from a list of remote computers, create a text file and save it to your local machine. For this example, I named it ‘pc.txt’ saved at C:\removal. The text file will contain the hostnames of the computers from which to uninstall, one hostname per line. No commas or semicolons, just hostnames, each on their own line. Prefix the uninstall command with                  { /failfast:on /node:@"c:\pc.txt" }

For Example: { /failfast:on /node:@"c:\removal\pc.txt" product where "vendor like 'autodesk%'" call uninstall /nointeractive }

As each application uninstalls, you should get a return value of ‘0.’ This means it successfully uninstalled. If you are getting a return value of 1603, check to make sure that you ran CMD elevated (Run as Administrator).

Applications Fail to Uninstall

There are times when an Autodesk application becomes corrupt to the point it will not uninstall by any of the above means. This typically comes up when an application begins having issues running and requires you to reinstall it. However, trying to uninstall it fails, and when trying to reinstall, it tells you the application is already installed. There are two ways to fix this—by using the Microsoft Fix It tool or by manually deleting its folders and registry keys.  

Microsoft Fix It Uninstall

The purpose of the Microsoft Fix It utility is to “Fix problems that block programs from being installed or removed.” Basically, it searches to find the issues that are preventing the uninstall and fixing those issues, then removing the application. You can find a link to download this tool by searching the AKN (Autodesk Knowledge Network, ) for “Uninstall Using Microsoft Fix it.”

Download and Run the utility. On the first screen, click “Next.” Then select on the next screen that you are having an issue Uninstalling. From the list of applications, select the one you are trying to remove and click next. Then, select “Yes, Try Uninstall” on the next screen. It will then attempt to repair and uninstall (see Figure 4). If it fails to uninstall or the application you want was not listed, move on to manual removal.

Figure 4

Manual Removal

If all other methods of removal have failed, manually removing folders and registry keys will be necessary. If you are removing a single Autodesk application and leaving others installed, be careful to only delete folders and registry keys for that specific application, and not shared components. In some extreme cases, if shared resources are also corrupt, removing all Autodesk applications may be necessary. Before continuing, a quick warning: changes made to the Windows registry happen immediately and no backup is created automatically. Do not edit the Windows registry unless you are confident about doing so.

The first step in a manual removal is deleting the Product Code key from the registry (see Figure 5). This is what tells Windows that the application is installed and where to find its resources. Open the registry and go to HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Installer\
Products. From the list of Product Codes, you need to identify the Product Code for the application you are trying to remove. Left-click on the first Product Code in the list and on the right-hand pane of the Registry Editor you will see a list of values. Look for the value ProductName—this will tell you the name of the application for that Product Code. You can arrow down through each Product Code until you find the application you are looking for. You can also right-click on the Products key in the left-hand pane and select “find” to search for the application name.

Don’t forget to also remove Product Code keys for sub-applications if they would not uninstall as well. For example, AutoCAD 2018 also has an “AutoCAD 2018 Language Pack” that you would want to remove if you are going to reinstall AutoCAD 2018. Once the Product Code keys have been removed, clean up the remaining files/folders and registry keys for the application. The next section describes that process.

Figure 5

Cleanup after Uninstall

Regardless of the way you uninstall, it’s important to do some manual cleanup of leftover files and registry keys, especially if you are uninstalling and reinstalling because of an issue with the application. You can find an Autodesk generic guide for removing everything Autodesk, and application specific guides that will list out each folder and registry key that needs to be removed for a clean uninstall of that program.

These guides can be found on the AKN (Autodesk Knowledge Network The simplest way to find the guide you are looking for is to use the Search bar on the AKN website. Just search ‘Clean Uninstall product year’. For example, ‘Clean Uninstall Revit 2018.’

Follow the guide, deleting each folder and key it lists. When you are done, it’s always a good idea to clear the Windows Temp folder before reinstalling.

For the sake of space here, I won’t list out each folder and key for any specific application as they are readily available on the AKN.


As you can see, there are several ways to go about uninstalling the vast collection of Autodesk software you have installed. This article should help you save time and be more successful when uninstalling software.

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