How to Easily Remove Bloatware from Windows 10

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Bloatware is truly awful. Manufacturers fill your shiny new laptop, phone, or tablet with pre-installed applications to put an extra dollar in their pocket, leaving you a bundle of oft-useless programs taking up space. If it is annoying on laptops with large storage drives, it is downright infuriating finding out your 32GB phone storage is 25% full at purchase.

It is wrong, and we’ve seen some pretty appalling examples of bloatware this year; Lenovo’s SuperFish debacle springs to mind. Unfortunately, Microsoft is no saint, either. If you’ve upgraded to Windows 10 you may have noted a number of new applications appearing on your system, seemingly without your permission. Let’s look at how to ease the pressure on that awful bloating.

A Brief Uninstall Guide

 

While Windows 10 does come with a reasonably large amount of bloatware, it is also relatively easy to get rid of it. Microsoft has provided us two options: using the traditional uninstall, or by using the PowerShell. First we’ll look at the traditional.

Bloatware doesn’t feature within the System > Apps & Features list you would normally use to uninstall a program. Why would it? Microsoft, and other manufacturers who deliver products with bloatware stand to profit from your using them, so making it easy to uninstall isn’t in their best interest.

The Traditional

 

You can right-click the application, and select uninstall from the context menu. This appears to work for several apps included in the Windows 10 installation package, such as Money, News, Sports, and a few others clogging up your Start menu.

Microsoft has made it simple to remove the more cosmetic items attached to Windows 10, but you’ll quickly find that not all apps are considered equal. Indeed, those apps Microsoft considers part of the core Windows 10 experience will require you to use the PowerShell to hide, or remove.

Others, such as Cortana simply cannot be 100% removed from your system, despite your best efforts. Or rather, you can remove Cortana, but your Start menu search function will cease to work.

Using the PowerShell

 

The PowerShell is an important part of the Windows command line. It forms a command and scripting language enabling you greater control over your Windows installation through task automation, configuration management, and administrative tools. In this case, we can use the PowerShell to either hide, or remove the apps installed with Windows 10.

First, open the PowerShell command line. Type PowerShell into your Start menu search bar. The best match should be Windows PowerShell. Right-click and select Run as Adminstrator. This ensures you have control over the entire system.

Next, we need to decide what you want to remove. The PowerShell can remove any packages ranging from the Zune Music Player, to Bing Health and Fitness, to the Microsoft Windows Calculator. Not everyone will want to remove each feature, but we'll list a large proportion of them in a moment.

Hiding the Apps

 

Entering the following code into the PowerShell will hide each application you enter.

Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.ZuneMusic” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.Music.Preview” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.XboxGameCallableUI” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.XboxIdentityProvider” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.BingTravel” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.BingHealthAndFitness” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.BingFoodAndDrink” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.People” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.BingFinance” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.3DBuilder” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.WindowsCalculator” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.BingNews” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.XboxApp” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.BingSports” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.WindowsCamera” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.Getstarted” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.Office.OneNote” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.WindowsMaps” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.MicrosoftSolitaireCollection” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.MicrosoftOfficeHub” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.BingWeather” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.BioEnrollment” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.WindowsStore” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.Windows.Photos” | Remove-AppxPackage
Get-AppxPackage -name “Microsoft.WindowsPhone” | Remove-AppxPackage

Hiding has the obvious advantage of obscuring irritating bloatware from your view without actually deleting it from the system, meaning you can relocate it at any time.

Deleting the Apps

 

If you truly want to remove everything from your system using the PowerShell, we’ll use a different command: DISM. DISM stands for Deployment Imaging Service and Management. The DISM command is relatively powerful and can be used to service a Windows system in many different ways. In this case, we’ll use it to remove the additional apps from your system.

This one works a little differently. First, we’ll check to see the entire bloatware spectrum by using this command:

DISM /Online /Get-ProvisionedAppxPackages | select-string Packagename

You should now see a complete list of installed apps. We can now use the package names in the list to begin removing them. To remove them, use the following code:

DISM /Online /Remove-ProvisionedAppxPackage /PackageName:PACKAGENAME

Where PACKAGENAME is taken from the list we previously generated. In the below image, you will see the example of removing the Microsoft Zune Video package. Once the operation completes successfully, you’ll need to restart your machine for the code to take full effect.

What Does This Do?

 

While the Windows 10 bloatware doesn’t actually take up much physical space, it is more about exercising control over your own system. Many consider the default apps included in the installation to be “garbage,” while others cannot see the point of removing them.

However you feel, you now have the tools to remove each piece of bloatware yourself. Happy obliterating.


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