How to Completely Remove All Traces of Office 2010 From Your System

I’ve just made it through a pretty nasty problem with Office. I had been running the beta version, and had updated it to the RTM version available on MSDN. Yesterday I got a message saying that it was going to expire in 2 days. I tried changing my product key, but it wouldn’t accept my (legitimate) key. I did notice one odd thing that the version numbers were mismatched at various areas of the system – both 14.0.0460 and 14.0.0463 were showing. As it turns out, that had nothing to do with it, as this is expected behaviour, but I decided to do a full uninstall and reinstall.

After reinstalling, every one of my Office applications wanted to run through configuration every time they started. This problem, as it turns out is not new, and there are unfortunately many possible causes, and as many solutions. I tried many of them. I did have the registry permissions problem with HKEY_CLASSES, and walked through the solution outlined here. It helped me with OneNote and Outlook, but Word and Excel were still problems. Uninstalling and reinstalling (multiple times) didn’t help at all.

Luckily,(for me) a colleague had some really nasty problems last year that required him completely removing Office 2007 from his computer. After speaking with Microsoft support,he received a utility that was to do the job, and it worked well.  I thought I’d give it a whirl. Unfortunately, it only wiped 2007 not 2010, but luckily, it’s a vbs file and therefore editable.

After removing all 2007 and 2010 applications from control panel, I ran the 2007 utility, which found and removed lots of stuff. I copied the file and then edited it to be relevant for Office 2010. I then ran it, and it did its magic, with a few errors related to the removal of unrelated temp files. A reboot, a reinstall, and I’m up and running again. Nice – I wasn’t looking forward to the idea of repaving my system.

I”ve included both of these removal utilities here.  No warranties are expressed or implied, they may help or hurt,  they may make your system catch on fire, and if they do, don’t blame me. All I can say is that they worked really well for me.

Required SQL Server Versions and Patch Levels for SharePoint 2010

Microsoft has been very clear about the requirements for installing SharePoint 2010. The biggest thing in this release is that it’s 64 bit only, not just on the Operating System side, but also in the SQL Server requirements. In addition, it’s also quite fussy about which versions it supports.

On the operating system side, a complete list can be found here. On the SQL Server side, it’s generally thought that it supports only SQL Server 2008 and above. However, this isn’t true – it supports SQL Server 2005 – provided that it’s 64 bit mode. However, the devil is in the details. It’s very specific about the patch level that you’re running. Glenn Berry has a list of the supported versions, with patch levels, and the SQL script for determining your precise version levels. There are only 3, so I’ll repeat them below:

  • SQL Server 2005 SP3 CU3 (Build 4220) or greater
  • SQL Server 2008 SP1 CU2 (Build 2714) or greater
  • SQL Server 2008 R2

The kicker is that neither the SP3 level of 2005, nor the SP1 level of 2008 will cut it,and you will have a failure if you do not conform to these versions. This failure will not appear until you run the SharePoint Products configuration wizard,which is pretty much past the point of commitment. In addition, the stsam.exe –o preupgradecheck command on a 2007 farm does not appear to detect this deficiency (at least it hasn’t yet in my experience).

Do yourself a favour, and patch up your SQL servers before you start your install/upgrade. The most recent cumulative update packages, as of this writing are:

I’ve used CU7 for 2008 on my installs thus far, and can attest that it works. I’m still waiting, hopefully not long now, for 2008 R2…

Not Supported Error While Doing A Clean Install of SharePoint 2010 RTM

I ran into an odd error today while installing the RTM of SharePoint 2010 on a clean server farm. I had built everything up from scratch on current versions, including SQL Server. I had applied SP1 and run all Windows updates. When I got to the point of actually running the Products and Technologies Configuration Wizard, I received an error stating that my SQL Server was running an unsupported version of SQL, version 2007.100.2531.0. Yes, it was 64 bit, as was everything else. I thought that was rather odd, and thought I’d try to find something newer.

Cumulative Update 6 for SQL Server 2008 is available so I thought I’d try applying that. Lo and behold it worked, and I continue to install away.

I just hope that it’ll be just as happy with SQL Server 2008 R2….