Is there a way to uninstall (not hide) the default games in 64-bitWindows 7 HPE?


A

Ant

I want to regain free disk space since I don't play them.

Thank you in advance. :)
--
"... Let's go pour these (peas from a can) onto an anthill I've found."
--Strong Bad (Witness the Cheatar! episode)
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Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
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J

Jeff Layman

I want to regain free disk space since I don't play them.

Thank you in advance. :)
The games (from Microsoft) installed by default with Windows 7 take up
negligible disk space.

I have many games installed by HP on my laptop which I'm not interested
in, but have never bothered to uninstall. If I needed to, it is pretty
straightforward via Control Panel | Programs and Features | HP Games.
Your setup should be similar, depending on who supplied your computer,
and who supplied the games.
 
R

Roy Smith

I want to regain free disk space since I don't play them.

Thank you in advance. :)

Sure just click on Start - Control Panel - Programs and Features, then
on the left side click on the line that says "Turn Windows features on
or off". In the next window that opens just clear the check in the box
next to Games and click OK.


--

Roy Smith
Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit
Thunderbird 5.0
Wednesday, August 10, 2011 8:31:48 AM
 
A

Ant

The games (from Microsoft) installed by default with Windows 7 take up
negligible disk space.

I have many games installed by HP on my laptop which I'm not interested
in, but have never bothered to uninstall. If I needed to, it is pretty
straightforward via Control Panel | Programs and Features | HP Games.
Your setup should be similar, depending on who supplied your computer,
and who supplied the games.
Mine isn't an OEM since it is a business PC (Dell Studios XPS). I just
want to toss out stuff I will never use like Windows' default games.
--
"Is this stuff any good for ants?" "No, it kills them." --unknown
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
A

Ant

Sure just click on Start - Control Panel - Programs and Features, then
on the left side click on the line that says "Turn Windows features on
or off". In the next window that opens just clear the check in the box
next to Games and click OK.
Doesn't this only HIDE the games? I want to UNINSTALL the games from my
HDD and Start Menu.
--
"You're kissing an ant hill." --Mike Nelson
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 
J

Jeff Layman

Mine isn't an OEM since it is a business PC (Dell Studios XPS). I just
want to toss out stuff I will never use like Windows' default games.
I'm not sure that you could uninstall them. But it might be possible to
delete C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games. You might have to take control
of the folder first, though. That would just leave some entries in the
registry, and perhaps something in the startup folder(s), that might
also need to be deleted.

It would be a good idea to do a disk image first, just in case...
 
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Z

Zaphod Beeblebrox

Ant said:
Doesn't this only HIDE the games? I want to UNINSTALL the games from
my HDD and Start Menu.
I can't say for sure for all of the features, but at least for some of
them it will actually uninstall unneeded files. Quick enough to try,
and who cares if the games are still there anyway? It's not like they
take up enough space to matter...

--
Zaphod

Arthur: All my life I've had this strange feeling that there's
something big and sinister going on in the world.
Slartibartfast: No, that's perfectly normal paranoia. Everyone in the
universe gets that.
 
J

Jeff Layman

I can't say for sure for all of the features, but at least for some of
them it will actually uninstall unneeded files. Quick enough to try,
and who cares if the games are still there anyway? It's not like they
take up enough space to matter...
I thought that, too. Out of interest I checked the size of C:\Program
Files\Microsoft Games. Somewhat more than I anticipated - 142Mb.
 
Z

Zaphod Beeblebrox

Jeff Layman said:
I thought that, too. Out of interest I checked the size of
C:\Program Files\Microsoft Games. Somewhat more than I
anticipated - 142Mb.
Perhaps a bit more that I'd have expected, but this is Windows 7 after
all - last time I actually checked would have been Windows XP. For
some perspective, that is still a *very* small percentage of drive
space - remember, 2 terabyte drives have been available since the
launch of Windows 7, so even 1 terabyte drives were likely pretty
common (in desktops, anyway). That 142MB is less than 0.02% of a 1
terabyte drive. Even a typical laptop has better than a 250GB drive,
so still less than 0.1% of the drive...
 
G

Gene E. Bloch

Doesn't this only HIDE the games? I want to UNINSTALL the games from my
HDD and Start Menu.
Of course it removes the links from the start menu. But I agree with the
other people that it's a waster of time to worry about the small amount
of memory used.

Don't delete any files until *after* you uninstall, however. It can
create inconsistencies...
 
D

Dominique

Ant <[email protected]> écrivait (e-mail address removed):

Mine isn't an OEM since it is a business PC (Dell Studios XPS). I just
want to toss out stuff I will never use like Windows' default games.
Yours's a Dell?

Then IT IS AN OEM!

(OEM = Original Equipment Manufacturer)

Create a backup of your system, then uninstall the games from the Control
Panel and then delete the games folder.

If the system works for a while as you like after a while, all is good; if
not, restore your last backup.

HTH
 
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P

Paul

Ant said:
Doesn't this only HIDE the games? I want to UNINSTALL the games from my
HDD and Start Menu.
Windows 7 uses a "store" concept. That means, there is this huge
directory, with copies of *everything* in it. (Even the files to
run "Ultimate", are stored in there on your "Premium" laptop.)
To make those files *work", all the OS has to do, is connect
hard links to the files. The files have long long names, to suit
someone at Microsoft's idea of fun. A shorter name is used, when
the file is linked into the real OS folder.

The store uses hard links. A typical file being used by the OS,
has four hard links (I got the counts, by mounting C: in Linux
and studying C: there). If you were to uninstall the games
directory, all that would happen, is the hard link count would
drop back from four to one. The "data" for the game would
still be in the store. It would not be erased. That is because
Windows likes to store all versions, even when not in usage.

The single hard link in the store to that data, allows Microsoft
to deliver updates to it. If a new version of the game is created,
it is quite possible the old file and link will just sit there.
It's hard to convince Windows 7 to clean that up. (A cleanup can be
done after a Service Pack, but it isn't a generic "vacuuming"
operation, and is very specific about what gets removed.
A complete "Hoovering" is not provided.)

So if I had to venture a guess, if you remove the games
directory, yes, the file system will shrink - by the amount
of metadata space required to store the hard link pointers,
which would be tiny. None of the data is removed. The hard
links, in the OS directories would be removed. And the single
remaining link, to that version of game and the clusters used
to hold the file data, would still be there.

If you wish to do the experiment, of "how much did I save",
try the following

1) Have Windows do a complete backup. This creates a .vhd file.
I have a copy of the Windows 7 C: loaded into a Linux
virtual machine in VirtualPC, and I did that using that .vhd
backup file. But even without wishing to use the .vhd, the
space it takes represents both data and metadata used to
represent C:. Only "used" sectors are copied to the .vhd, which
is why it is an accurate representation of file system size.

2) Uninstall Games using Windows Components.

3) Now, if you want to keep the .vhd from (1), move it to
another disk. That is to prevent overwrite. (I learned that
the hard way.) There should be a .vhd for the boot partition,
and a .vhd for C:. My C: .vhd is about 26GB.

Do another complete backup. Compare the new .vhd files created
in this run, against the size of the old ones.

I used the complete backup method, after every step of the
SP1 upgrade, for the purpose of measuring true file system
size. So I've done this kinda crap before.

Have fun :)

Paul
 
J

J. P. Gilliver (John)

Zaphod Beeblebrox said:
I can't say for sure for all of the features, but at least for some of
them it will actually uninstall unneeded files. Quick enough to try,
and who cares if the games are still there anyway? It's not like they
take up enough space to matter...
I remember reading/hearing someone from Microsoft saying that the games,
at least patience (solitaire) and minesweeper, which have been there
since Windows 3.1 if not before, are at least in part there to encourage
mouse practice and familiarity - but if they'd put something in called
"mouse training aid" or similar, no-one would ever use them.
 
J

J. P. Gilliver (John)

In message <[email protected]>, Paul <[email protected]>
writes:
[]
and studying C: there). If you were to uninstall the games
directory, all that would happen, is the hard link count would
[]
What do you mean by "uninstall the games directory" - delete it? To me,
uninstall is something I can only do with software. However, usages
change, and I'm glad to yield to a new usage, once I know what it is.
 
G

Gene E. Bloch

I remember reading/hearing someone from Microsoft saying that the games,
at least patience (solitaire) and minesweeper, which have been there
since Windows 3.1 if not before, are at least in part there to encourage
mouse practice and familiarity - but if they'd put something in called
"mouse training aid" or similar, no-one would ever use them.
I have also heard that, and it's credible. Especially the last part :)
 
K

Ken Blake

I remember reading/hearing someone from Microsoft saying that the games,
at least patience (solitaire) and minesweeper, which have been there
since Windows 3.1 if not before, are at least in part there to encourage
mouse practice and familiarity - but if they'd put something in called
"mouse training aid" or similar, no-one would ever use them.

I don't know about Minesweeper, but my understanding is that what you
say about Solitaire is correct. It was there to teach people how to
click, double-click, and drag-and-drop.

And Solitaire started with Windows 3.0, but Minesweeper started with
the Windows Entertainment pack. It didn't become part of Windows until
3.1.
 
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D

Dave \Crash\ Dummy

Ken said:
I don't know about Minesweeper, but my understanding is that what you
say about Solitaire is correct. It was there to teach people how to
click, double-click, and drag-and-drop.

And Solitaire started with Windows 3.0, but Minesweeper started with
the Windows Entertainment pack. It didn't become part of Windows
until 3.1.
Well, "Mouse Training" is the only game I have enabled, and I use it almost
daily because I still haven't figured out how to use the mouse after 20+
years. I don't know what all those antemouse years I played Solitaire
with playing cards were for.
 
P

Paul

J. P. Gilliver (John) said:
and studying C: there). If you were to uninstall the games
directory, all that would happen, is the hard link count would
[]
What do you mean by "uninstall the games directory" - delete it? To me,
uninstall is something I can only do with software. However, usages
change, and I'm glad to yield to a new usage, once I know what it is.[/QUOTE]

If you go to Add/Remove, and look at Windows components, there
were options in previous OSes, to add or remove features. For
example, on my current WinXP Pro machine, I have the option of
installing IIS if I want (web server).

The difference, as I see it on Windows 7, is the store concept,
where even software you're not licensed to use, is kept
and maintained in the store. There have been various discussions
about "space saving", and the difference in this case, is the
extensive usage of hard links. Data clusters in the file system,
don't get "deleted", unless the reference count to them, drops
to zero. A file from the store, has one hard link if it isn't being
used. A typical file that is in usage, has four hard links. That
means, you can find a file name pointing to that data, in four
different directories. To store the file, only takes one unit
of data storage, as the four file pointers are pointing to the
same data. So there aren't four copies, only one set of data
and four file names - if you overwrite the data, all four
files appear to change at the same time - thats what the
hard link gets you.

(Experimenting with hard links) <[email protected]>
http://al.howardknight.net/msgid.cgi?STYPE=msgid&MSGI=<[email protected]>

So what I'm saying is, by all means, do the experiment, go to
Windows Components and "remove" some software you dislike. But
by doing so, don't expect Windows 7 to yield you a big space
saving. Because the *tendency* is for Windows 7 to hold onto
stuff to the bitter end. Since the Windows Components also
allows you to "reinstall" stuff, the original files can't
really be gone. And that tells me, that the stuff must still
be there in the store.

When I looked at the store, I could find files with "Ultimate"
in their name, and they had one hard link to them. On my
"Premium" laptop, that tells me they aren't being used. But
if I were to purchase an Anytime Upgrade, I would be licensed
to use the features, and then, additional hard links would be
added, to link those files into the real, operational OS folders.
The actual number of files involved (to get Ultimate), isn't
that large, so there isn't that much of a penalty for having
all versions of the OS, in the store.

These are things I've determined by experimentation, not by
reading them in a book, which is why I encourage others
to have a look for themselves and see how it works. There
have already been complaints from IT professionals, about
the ability to keep Windows 7 trim and svelte, and it would
mainly be from people who run virtual machines. And that's
where I got the idea, that the design intent is to hold
onto things. There didn't seem to be any attempt by Microsoft,
to offer tools that could remove files where there was
no longer a dependency. And that leads to a (relatively slow)
growth of the space needed to store C:, as new security updates
and the like, come in. A Service Pack, does contain info on
stuff that can be removed, but doesn't check dependencies on
everything, only the Service Pack related files (i.e. precomputed
removal of some sort - not a generic cleanup).

I did my experiments, because I wanted to see what kind of
impact SP1 has. And it wasn't that big a deal.

Making .vhd files is necessary, because Windows 7 didn't include
reworking Explorer, to show users how much space was really being used.
(Hard links can easily get double counted, if you just use Explorer.)
And making a .vhd, the size of the .vhd is an accurate representation
of how much space is needed on C:.

As an example, in that archived post above, I found these four files.

Program Files (x86)/Reference Assemblies/Microsoft/Framework/v3.0/System.Workflow.Runtime.dll
Windows/assembly/GAC_MSIL/System.Workflow.Runtime/3.0.0.0__31bf3856ad364e35/System.Workflow.Runtime.dll
Windows/winsxs/x86_wwf-system.workflow.runtime_31bf3856ad364e35_6.1.7600.16385_none_64f133bd015a8f4f/System.Workflow.Runtime.dll
Windows/winsxs/msil_system.workflow.runtime_31bf3856ad364e35_6.1.7600.16385_none_d7f57c8120b07553/System.Workflow.Runtime.dll

Those four files, point to the same set of data clusters. The first
link, is the one used by the OS. The two at the bottom, are
in the store.

If I went to Explorer, to the folder holding that file, and did
properties, I'd get the same "size" for each file. If I added
those numbers together, I'd get "4*size", which is 3 times
larger than it should be (since there is only one set of data
clusters for the four "files"). So when people blithely select
"Properties" on a folder in Windows 7, they're going to get
the wrong answer (as long as there is at least one hard linked
file in the folder). I see arguments all the time about "my blahblah
folder is 6GB", when in fact you simply can't use Explorer
properties and get an accurate answer, with out a *great*
deal of care. And "hard links", without modifying the displayed
info in Explorer, is what leads to that inaccuracy and lack of
ability to add numbers together and get a number equal to the
file system size.

And that's why I use .vhd, to measure changes. It's clumsy, but
I don't have to do any arithmetic or accounting to get info. If
you want to know how much impact a change has made to C:, do a
backup, then check the size of the resulting .vhd file. As the
example hard linked file above, only takes "1*size" in a .vhd
(plus the metadata for the four file pointers). The .vhd only
stores just enough info to accurately reproduce the file system.

Paul
 
J

J. P. Gilliver (John)

[QUOTE="Paul said:
and studying C: there). If you were to uninstall the games
directory, all that would happen, is the hard link count would
[]
What do you mean by "uninstall the games directory" - delete it? To
me, uninstall is something I can only do with software. However,
usages change, and I'm glad to yield to a new usage, once I know what
it is.[/QUOTE]

If you go to Add/Remove, and look at Windows components, there
were options in previous OSes, to add or remove features. For
example, on my current WinXP Pro machine, I have the option of
installing IIS if I want (web server).[/QUOTE]

That is, indeed, what I understand by the word "uninstall" - something
you do to _software_. It was your use of it with the word "directory"
that threw me, since to me a directory is a rather firmer concept than
software. Of course, it is possible - maybe even likely, though knowing
Microsoft I wouldn't be surprised either way - that all the games
software that comes with Windows _is_ actually in the same directory,
and _uninstalling_ it might lead to _deleting_ that directory.
The difference, as I see it on Windows 7, is the store concept,
where even software you're not licensed to use, is kept
and maintained in the store. There have been various discussions
about "space saving", and the difference in this case, is the
extensive usage of hard links. Data clusters in the file system,
[good description of links deleted. Sounds like they've finally got
round to implementing links in the form Unix (and I presume now Linux)
has had them for decades, and which they made a stab at around the time
Windows first came out with "shortcuts".

[For those wishing to really see sizes, isn't the "free space" shown for
each disc letter easier than .vhd-ing?]
 
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A

Ant

Yours's a Dell?

Then IT IS AN OEM!

(OEM = Original Equipment Manufacturer)
Uh, it didn't come with preinstalled softwares. It was set up by IT
department at work.

Create a backup of your system, then uninstall the games from the Control
Panel and then delete the games folder.
I don't see any the preinstalled default games (e.g., Solitaire) in
Windows 7's installed programs list.
--
"Ant colonies are remarkably similar to cities. No one choreographs the
action, not even the queen ant, but ant behavior is controlled by swarm
logic--put 10,000 dumb ants together, and they become smart. They will
calculate the shortest routes to food supplies sniffing out pheromone
signals from other ants and Johnson says people do the same thing in
cities using low-level interactions of people on the street." --Alex
Cukan, "Stories of modern science," United Press International, October
8, 2001
/\___/\ Ant @ http://antfarm.ma.cx (Personal Web Site)
/ /\ /\ \ Ant's Quality Foraged Links: http://aqfl.net
| |o o| |
\ _ / If crediting, then use Ant nickname and AQFL URL/link.
( ) If e-mailing, then axe ANT from its address if needed.
Ant is currently not listening to any songs on this computer.
 

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