How to Uninstall Desktop App with Keyboard and Mouse in Windows 8.1

Microsoft’s Windows 8.1 operating system introduced many new features designed to make life with apps easier.

The Windows Store, for example, allows users to quickly purchase and download free apps that integrate into the Windows experience, without having to go into a web browser or download from potentially unsafe sites.

Unfortunately, the Windows Store is not as robust as it should be, and today, users who need to get their work done or prefer the Desktop environment will still find it necessary to install desktop apps. After all, Desktop apps are the only way for users to get native versions of apps like the Chrome web browser or Apple’s iTunes media software.

Installing these apps is relatively easy. Getting rid of them may confuse some first time Windows 8.1 users. Here’s how to uninstall Desktop apps in Windows 8.1.

Before we begin, it’s important to note that this process will be slightly different depending on whether you’re using Windows 8.1, a free update available to users via the Windows Store, or Windows 8, a version of Windows 8. Microsoft launched it in 2012.

We will walk you through how to uninstall apps in Windows 8.1, not Windows 8. Since Windows 8.1 is available for free to all Windows 8 users, do yourself a favor and download the Windows 8.1 update from the Windows Store. To do this, open the Windows Store by tapping or clicking the Store icon on the Start Screen and searching for the title that tells you to install the update. Typically, the process takes about an hour. Please note that your computer will need to be connected to an internet connection and will need to install updates automatically. Windows 8.1 includes tons of features that will make owning a Windows desktop, laptop or tablet more interesting.

Go to by pressing the Windows button on your device’s keyboard. You can also place your mouse in the upper right corner of your screen and then click the Start button there to open the Charms Bar.

Now, tap or click on a circular icon that surrounds it at the bottom left of your screen. Looking down and clicking on it will reveal a huge list of all the apps you have installed on your device.

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Now in the application list find the application you want to uninstall using your mouse. In this case we’re only removing one Desktop app, but installing Windows Store apps works exactly the same.

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Click on the application option while the dropdown continues to show more options for that particular application. If you did this right, you will be kicked out of the Start Screen and to the Desktop. Don’t worry.

Now, with the Add or Remove Apps window open, locate the same Desktop app that you want to uninstall or remove in Windows 8.1. Click on it and then click on it on the top toolbar in the window.

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Now it’s just a waiting game. The uninstall system for the app in question will now open and ask you a series of questions about uninstalling the app. Most apps will let you change your mind at some point in this process, but there’s no way to stop them once they start uninstalling.

Removing desktop apps can save space on your device or have unintended consequences if you don’t know what that app is doing on your machine. Even in Windows 8.1 Desktop apps are the way most hardware manufacturers like Dell and HP deliver custom experiences for their devices. Sometimes these apps are trivial like bass boosters for sound. Other times, they may be necessary for the way your device works. So it’s really a good idea not to uninstall Desktop apps if you don’t know what their functionality is.

Read: Windows 8.1: A Must-Read How-To

To be clear, uninstalling a Desktop app on a Windows 8.1 tablet or touchscreen device is almost exactly the same as shown here, except users don’t right-click on the app. Instead, they tap and hold. Tablets have application bars that float and instead contain menus for installing applications. Windows 8.1 has been updated to allow it to use the best screen elements for the task at hand. Whether the right-click menu or the app bar appears for you depends entirely on your individual device and the input method you use. For example, devices like Microsoft’s own Surface tablets will show app bars when a user tries to uninstall an app by tapping it.