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Best way to remove Symantec Antivirus Corporate Edition

Created: 06 May 2009 • Updated: 21 May 2010 | 11 comments

Hello everyone.  I'm looking for guidance on the best way to completely remove version 10.x of SAV Corporate Edition from a Windows Server 2003 server and Windows XP and possibly Vista.  Is the best way simply using Add/Remove on the server and client PC's, or is removing the product manually a cleaner way that will truly get rid of all traces of the program?

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pbogu's picture

add/remove should work fine. manual cleanup will be always better. and you can call support to get CleanWipe tool which will also remove everything in the similar way as manual cleanup.

Thrasonic's picture

Thanks for the quick answer.  I do have the CleanWipe tool but wasn't sure if I should use that instead of Add/Remove or manual clean, or use it in conjunction maybe.  I guess I could do Add/Remove, then go through the manual removal steps, followed by CleanWipe to make sure.  What do you think?

Jason1222's picture

Are you upgrading versions of Symantec? OR are you completly going to a new vendor?

**CleanWipe Utility Warning**

IF you have any other Symantec Products installed on your machine(s), server(s), when you run the Cleanwipe utility, you will be wiping those as well.

**End CleanWipe Utility Warning**

If you are upgrading from 10.x to 11.x or 12.x than the installer is generally your best bet and will take care of the removal process for you.

If you are completely changing vendors, some other vendors have "available removal tools for competitor products" as do Symantec.

Add/Remove programs, depending on the number of machines can be time consuming and tedious work.

Obviously, the best choice, to completely remove everything is going to be the "clean wipe tool".  However, there are differences between SAV 10.x and SEP 11.x
The cleanwipe utility is no longer available from Symantec and there are reasons for this.  You should at a very minimum check with Symantec or Symantec Support, before using this utility to remove 10.x

Thrasonic's picture

Yes, we're going with a totally different product and getting rid of Symantec altogether.  They have SAV 10.x and are moving to VIPRE Enterprise.  Sunbelt Software does have a removal tool but I wanted to be sure to use the best tool for the job and figured it would probably come from Symantec since it's their product.  I'm confused, though.  You said the best choice to completely remove everything is to use the clean wipe tool but then you say I shouldn't use the tool before talking to Symantec support.  Is it a good tool to use if you want to remove SAV from a server and workstations or not?

Jason1222's picture

I have used Cleanwipe Tool before in my own personal environment, on both Servers and Workstations and Yes it works great.

I have no other Symantec products on any of the machines that I used the tool on.

As far as I know:

- CleanWipe Utility was introduced for SEP 11.x 
- SAV 10.x might have certain registry values and folders stored in different locations that SEP 11.x would use and the tool may jump over those and cause you problems down the line.
- Symantec has stopped providing the CleanWipe Utility, unless deemed absolutely necessary by their support. 
- Symantec offers little to no support and a disclaimer for using the tool itself.

I say you should check with support or someone who has done it, to reply in this forum about using CleanWipe with SAV 10.x as the resulting consequences, if any at all, may be dire.

Thrasonic's picture

Huh, okay.  So I shouldn't use the CleanWipe utility.  Thanks for helping me understand why.

Sandeep Cheema's picture

Sometimes it gets nasty.

Back at Symantec, I remember a case which my then colleague was handling and after all the troubleshooting with no success, Cleanwipe was recommended for the server. He called up the customer after some time to ask if the tool worked, You would like the answer:)

"It worked like a charm, just like it's name. It cleanwiped all the network adapter drivers making the server lose complete connectivity."

Cleanwipe was there before SEP as well but Nonav I feel was better at that point of time. Now, Nonav is obsolete.

I would never use it on a server unless I am completely out of ideas.

De facto when AV does something, it starts jumping up and down, waving its arms, and shouting...

"Hey!  I found a virus!  Look at me!  I'm soooo goooood!"

Peter_007's picture

In normal cases cleanewipe tool is not recommended.
But in extreme cases cleanewipe tool has to be use.

Ajit Jha's picture

 There is some of the ways to remove Symantec Corporate Edition. Now u select which will be much suitable for u:
1. Manually Uninstall:

2. Go to Start--Control panel---Add Remove programm---Select- Symantec Antiviru Server, liveupdate and Symantec System centre and click un-insytall one by one.

3. Use Cleanwipe utility.



Ajit Jha

Technical Consultant


Bijay.Swain's picture

I think best way to remove a ny software is using Add/Remove program . You will never face any problem after removing throuh Add/Remove program . If it fails then go for NOnav /Cleanswipe.

Beppe's picture

Hi folk,

CleanWipe is suitable for SEP 11, SAV 10 and SAV 9 as well. NoNAV is too old and not suggested anymore.
If the uninstallation from the control panel fails, CleanWipe should be used for non critical machines and/or after a back-up, instead, the manual uninstallation could be better for servers and critical machines.
To make CleanWipe less agressive, don't allow the MSI keys research in the registry.
It is always raccomended to ask for the latest version of CleanWipe to the Symantec Tech Support.