Find software worth UN-installing from your PC, with ‘Should I Remove It’


Most people have a ton of software installed on their PC which are just clutter. Some are bloatware that came pre-installed on your PC or laptop, others are programs that you installed at some point and forgot about, that you may not even remember was there in the first place.

Wouldn’t it be great if you had your own, personal, consultant that would scan your PC and point out software that you could do without?

“Should I Remove It” is free software that aims to provide precisely such a service. It draws on its continually growing ‘software knowledge base’ to make recommendations on whether any particular installed piece of software is something that you should keep or remove. Despite the fact that we don’t think it does a great job, necessarily, we do think that it is a very interesting resource worth checking out.

Should I Remove It Screenshot1
This sort of thing is very easy to test: I ran it, and examined what it came up with.

The good: here’s what I like about it

  • Many of the software titles it recommended removing were indeed good candidates for removal, such as crapware programs that piggybacked on the installation process of other programs and got away with it, or software that I installed, didn’t like, and forgot about.
  • It offers some good information on each program it identifies. This info is presented on the ‘Should I Remove It’ website, though, and not some neutral, third party reference, so if they’re not quite being fair to some software title you may not know it.
  • You can initiate the uninstall right from the program interface.

The bad: here’s what is not-so-good

  • Many of the software titles it recommended removing were some of my favorite titles: uTorrent, Freemake Video Converter, EaseUS Todo Backup Free (which we found to be one of the best free disk imaging software), Revo Uninstaller, and many others like them.
  • It makes a lot out of the percentage of people who end up removing the software. I think this metric is misleading and shouldn’t hold too much weight, since people are likely to (a) remove overly technical software, such as uninstallers or disk imaging software, and (b) likely to remove what the software recommend removing in the first place.
  • It seems to be overly enthusiastic about a paid ‘PC Boosting’ software that is promoted on the site (I generally don’t believe in these things and try to avoid promoting them).
  • It seems to recommend removing software it knows nothing about. For example ‘JetToolBar’, which is a nice tabbed launcher that may have been listed because it includes the word ‘toolbar’ in the title.

The Verdict:

If you install and run this software, you will most likely find some good, value added removal recommendations. So in that sense I can see myself using it, especially as I install and test a ton of software that I eventually forget about. But I advise that you take it’s recommendations with a grain of salt.

If you are looking for a general, bloatware and crapware removing software then previously reviewed ‘PC Decrapifier‘ may be a better option. It is probably not fair to compare the two, though, as I can see myself using both.

Thoughts? Ideas? Please share them in the comments section.

Get ‘Shoud I Remove It’ here (Windows).

  • Oh the irony of a program that you need to install for it to tell you what programs you can uninstall. Programs like this should be portable as there is absolutely no need for it to be installed.

    • Samer Kurdi

      @ Carbonize: I think that its not whether the programs are installed or not that is the issue, but rather whether they have any business being there in the first place, and whether they add value or not. 😉

      • Doesn’t change the irony of installing a program that tells you what programs to uninstall. Revo Uninstaller is portable as is the FileHippo update checker so why does this program require you to install it?

  • Thanks for the post and I agree with you about not putting too much weight behind the % of users who uninstall. What I really like is that this seems to be a move in the direction of all the App Store applications for mobile devices with included reviews. The program might not be there yet, but could expand to include software users /should/ have on their computer (recommendations) and specialized or up-to-date anti-crapware uninstall tools to help clean up the garbage.

    carbonize: it does remind me of the “yo dawg, I heard you like __” xibit meme. Plus, I can see this as a useful tech support tool in portable format to help explain to users the software they have may not be helping.

    • Exactly this would be great as a portable app but then those of us who carry programs like this on our sticks tend to know what software is crap and what isn’t anyway.

  • ali bessani

    If I read your review it seems to recommend to uninstall a mix of programs that
    a) are really not very good
    b) excellent
    c) it doesn’t know
    Pretty random list if you ask me….