How To Solve Problems Installing McAfee

A woman called me because she had purchased a copy of McAfee Antivirus and she couldn’t get it to install. She already had AVG installed, so I told her to uninstall that first. She couldn’t get it to uninstall. She brought her laptop down to me. It was a Windows 7 laptop.

I went to the Programs and Features option in the Control Panel and tried to uninstall AVG. It only gave me the option to repair or add features. No uninstall option was available. Online, I went to find an Uninstaller.

AVG software remover

I used a program called AVG Clear. I ran it in safe mode and got rid of AVG, but the McAfee program would still not install.


So I did some research and tried to uninstall McAfee first. I assumed some components installed and were interfering with the setup. So, I went looking for an Uninstaller from McAfee.

McAfee Removal Tool (MCPR) – McAfee Removal Tool (MCPR)

Safe mode is recommended. Run it and click on Next.


Accept the License. Click Agree, then Next.


Type in the security code. It is case sensitive. Then Next.


Let it run. When finished, click on Restart. If it says it couldn’t remove some files, restart the system and run it a second time.


When you get the “Are you sure you want to restart now?” prompt, click on Yes.

My mistake– I did not run it in safe mode. It said it couldn’t remove all the files. I rebooted the system and ran it a second time. It finished successfully and recommended a restart. Afterward, McAfee installed without a hitch.

4 thoughts on “How To Solve Problems Installing McAfee”

  1. Hi Terry,

    I have had many experiences with several anti-virus programs and the necessity to uninstall them.
    To date I regularly search for an uninstall tool that does not leave hidden ‘dregs’ in the registry which requires manual removal.
    The ‘freebies’ especially continue to activate annoying ‘pop-ups’ in the right-hand bottom corner of the monitor screen.
    McAfee is a good example to show that when a client downloaded Adobe Reader, didn’t notice the small check-box next to the McAfee name.
    The choice of users should be indicated with a large notification on many seemingly honest programs that XYZ Free is available by ticking the box, not embedded ‘hi-jacker programs’ that users didn’t ask for or want.
    Emsisoft Anti-Virus, anti-Malware, anti-Pups, anti Ransomware is an all-in-one program without the need for sneaky ‘extras’, ready to open with the tick placed in a small, checked box.

    1. Terry Hollett

      Emsisoft Anti-Virus is a paid-for version with a 30-day trial. Most of the pop-ups from the free version are just trying to encourage you to buy the full version. The bundled software with Adobe, you must mean “McAfee Security Scan Plus”. It scans but can’t actually fix anything. You have to pay for the full version to do that. Be careful when you install things. Watch the screens carefully. And. any free antivirus is better than none at all. Keep in mind, it’s another layer of protection and not a 100% guarantee.

  2. The force uninstall in the Geek Uninstaller will uninstall any anti virus program that I have encountered. I really cannot see the need of running a paid or free version of any anti virus, in fact one might do more harm, by trying to run other anti virus programs in W10, other than the preinstalled Windows Defender.

  3. Terry,
    I am fully aware and correct that McAfee installed it’s free anti-virus program with an Adobe download, why do you think that it took my precious time to search and destroy all the hidden dregs in the registry of my client’s computer.
    I am also aware of the trial, note ‘trial’, not free version of Emsisoft which includes anti-virus, anti-malware, anti-pups, anti-ransomware, and, a free Emergency Kit to remove a virus if a client has turned off protection to allow an unacceptable program to be downloaded if Emsisoft had previously ‘red-flagged’ the program.
    In 35 years of computer experience with qualifications my comments are based on problems I solved for clients for free, donations offered on occasions.

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