Michael Griswold's SCCM Tips and Tricks

Things I have learned and want to share

Manual removal of the SCCM client

Manual removal of the SCCM client

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As much as I love it, it may occasionally be necessary to remove the System Center Configuration Manager client.  I recently had a customer who could not get a machine to upgrade from 2007 to 2012 and after attempting many things we did a manual clean down of the client then the 2012 client installed just fine.  If you need to remove the client you can do so fairly easily by running ccmsetup.exe /uninstall.  Ccmsetup should exist on all clients, usually under the windows folder.  In the event that the command line doesn’t work here is a list of things I usually check and remove to manually clean-up all the traces of the client so I can try a fresh install.


1. SMS Agent Host Service

2. CCMSetup service (if present)

3. \windows\ccm directory

4. \windows\ccmsetup directory

5. \windows\ccmcache directory

6. \windows\smscfg.ini

7. \windows\sms*.mif (if present)

8. HKLM\software\Microsoft\ccm registry keys

9. HKLM\software\Microsoft\CCMSETUP registry keys

10. HKLM\software\Microsoft\SMS registry keys

11. root\cimv2\sms WMI namespace

12 root\ccm WMI namespace

* Updated 9/30 to add WMI info

  • This is awesome.. Very useful post in unusual times of SCCM client removal.. Thanks a lot. Will share the post on my blog with credits to you..


  • Helped a lot. Very good info..

  • We are having one heck of a time with certain systems that the ConfigMgr Client 2007 install would not complete. Albeit reads a successful installation the "Actions" tab only showed 2 Actions...."Machine and User Policy Retrieval & Eval Cycle".

  • Typically if you only have those two actions it means your client physically installed just fine but it can't find a Management Point (MP) to communicate successfully with. Check your boundaries and location logs to see if it is a lack of knowing where to go, or if it knows but is failing due to something else like an authentication failure or such.

  • Not finding the MP could also be a result of old GPO. check the locationServices.log and the del keys HKLM\Software\Microsoft\SMS\Mobile Client

  • Thanks that worked perfect...

  • Sigh, despite using this, I'm still running into situations in my environment where, every now and then, a client goes through the entire installation process, only to fail near the very end, and I'm having little to no luck with the installer logs.

    Still, this is good info.

  • Hi! Just a thought.... What about WMI??? Do you delete something from there aswell? Wouldn't WMI classes and instances make a mess if you delete everything else manually...?

  • Freddy - Good call. I missed WMI. We leave a few other inventory things in other places, but I updated the article to point out the main 2 namespaces to clean up.

  • Hi,
    This is a great blog and very helpful. It can be annoying when a SCCM client stops working. I was able to manual delete the SCCM 2012 SP1 client following your instruction.

    However with SCCM 2012 R2 client the reinstall with ccmsetup doesn't work. Can it be that with R2 clients more leftovers need deletion?

  • Hi Edy,
    I'm not aware of any major changes with R2 that would cause it to behave differently. You might try pushing and checking the boxes to force the uninstall/install, or do it manually and use the /forceinstall behavior and see if that helps. Beyond that it would take looking at the logs to try and determine the cause of failure and I can't do that via blog comments so you would need to open a support case to get further assistance.

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