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    Difficulties uninstalling/reinstalling Colemak (missing uninstall.exe)

    • Started by skmcdor
    • 4 Replies:
    • Reputation: 0
    • Registered: 06-Jun-2021
    • Posts: 2

    Hi,
    I recently got a new (Windows) laptop and decided to install Colemak as part of setting it up, as I've been using the layout for several years on my previous computer.
    However, I was tired and made a few mistakes when trying to install it. The first was that I forgot to extract the files and ran setup.exe from within the .zip file. (Not entirely sure if that was what caused the issues, though.) Then, when going to settings to select the Colemak layout, it didn't show up (I probably should have just restarted my computer first...) so I thought maybe it didn't install right and I should uninstall it and try again. But the folder (downloaded from https://colemak.com/Windows) did not have uninstall.exe in it, despite the instructions saying to run uninstall.exe to uninstall it. So I went into the System32 folder and deleted the Colemak2.dll file, and restarted my computer. And then when I ran setup.exe again it said that it could not install it because the DLL file "already exists on this machine in the system directory".
    I think what I need to do from here is put the DLL file back, but the Colemak folder contains several folders that each contain a Colemak2.dll file, and I'm not entirely sure which one is the right one. My guess is that the "amd64" folder has the correct DLL for my computer, since my computer has an AMD processor and a 64-bit OS, but I want to be sure before I mess with the DLLs again.
    So, my questions are: What is going on with uninstall.exe being missing? What do I need to do to uninstall Colemak without the uninstall.exe? And is the Colemak2.dll file in the "amd64" folder the correct DLL for my computer?

    Thanks.

    Last edited by skmcdor (06-Jun-2021 22:45:34)
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    • Shai
    • Administrator
    • Reputation: 26
    • Registered: 11-Dec-2005
    • Posts: 410

    The easiest way is to use System Restore, and restore your system to an earlier date.

    If that's not an option, I've written a script that should hopefully fix it.

    Try running PowerShell as an administrator, and then paste the following code:

    [System.Reflection.Assembly]::Load("System.EnterpriseServices, Version=2.0.0.0, Culture=neutral, PublicKeyToken=b03f5f7f11d50a3a")
    $publish = New-Object System.EnterpriseServices.Internal.Publish
    $publish.GacRemove('Colemak2.dll')
    $publish.GacRemove('C:\Windows\System32\Colemak2.dll')
    $publish.GacRemove('C:\Windows\SysWOW64\Colemak2.dll')
    if (Test-Path 'C:\Windows\System32\Colemak2.dll') {
    Remove-Item 'C:\Windows\System32\Colemak2.dll'
    }
    if (Test-Path 'C:\Windows\SysWOW64\Colemak2.dll') {
    Remove-Item 'C:\Windows\SysWOW64\Colemak2.dll'
    }

    If that doesn't work, try cleaning the registry first by creating a file (e.g. colemak_cleanup.reg), and then running it and then rebooting.

    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
    
    [-HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Installer\UpgradeCodes\996E6C14CED75BF4C85D351129A710B2]
    
    [-HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Installer\UserData\S-1-5-21-3206044441-2106535309-3877874486-1001\Components]
    
    [-HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Installer\UserData\S-1-5-21-3206044441-2106535309-3877874486-1001\Products]
    
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\SharedDLLs]
    "C:\\Windows\\system32\\Colemak2.dll"=-
    
    [-HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\{D73971CA-7176-4A20-8113-6B9ADADBCE5D}]
    
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\WOW6432Node\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\SharedDlls]
    "C:\\Windows\\system32\\Colemak2.dll"=-

    There's no uninstall.exe anymore, I've updated the documentation.

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    • Reputation: 0
    • Registered: 06-Jun-2021
    • Posts: 2

    Thank you for the help. I went into the "SysWOW64" folder, deleted the Colemak2.dll file from there, and ran setup.exe again, and this time it successfully installed. And after restarting my computer I was able to switch to the Colemak layout :).

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    • Reputation: 169
    • From: Viken, Norway
    • Registered: 13-Dec-2006
    • Posts: 5,125

    Oh man, deleting a .dll file like that is certainly not the way to uninstall a program. But I guess you know that by now...

    I'd recommend using a portable solution like the EPKL program, since that won't mess up your OS. But I can't quite say that with a whole heart since I do use a MSKLC install as well for using the Windows Sublayer for Linux, since EPKL (or any low-level keyboard hook program) doesn't work so nicely there in my experience.

    Last edited by DreymaR (07-Jun-2021 10:16:25)

    *** Learn Colemak in 2–5 steps with Tarmak! ***
    *** Check out my Big Bag of Keyboard Tricks for Win/Linux/TMK... ***

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    • Reputation: 108
    • From: UK
    • Registered: 14-Apr-2014
    • Posts: 897

    I can't help thinking that in general, the standard way of installing layouts in the various OSs are all a bit old-fashioned and cumbersome. In an ideal world you'd need nothing more than a text definition file you could add to your user account.

    Using Colemak Mod-DH with some additional ergonomic keyboard mods.

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