How to Uninstall Optional Windows 10 Features (like Internet Explorer and MS Paint)

Windows 10 has come a long way since its release back in 2015, but it still ships with some legacy apps (or “features”) for backwards compatibility. They are optional and can be easily removed. While removing these features is not really going to free up a ton of space, it will make the app lists and menus less cluttered. If you would like to delete one or more of these features, read on for the steps.

Type “optional” in the Windows search box and open the “Optional features” window. Select the app you’d like to remove and click Uninstall. You will need to restart your PC to complete the action. You can uninstall everything on the list, and Windows will continue to work just fine. Personally, I nuked the following:

  • Internet Explorer 11
  • Windows Media Player
  • WordPad
  • Microsoft Paint
  • Windows Fax and Scan
  • Microsoft Quick Assist
  • Math Recognizer

🔍 Click images to enlarge them.

It’s easy to reinstall these apps if you need them in future. In the same window, click the “+ Add a feature” button, select apps from the list, and click Install.

There’s another place in Windows that allows you to disable (or enable) some features. Type “windows features” in the search box and open the app shown below. Remove the tick mark next to the stuff you don’t need and click OK. Reboot your PC to complete the changes. I disabled the below features.

  • Microsoft XPS Document Writer
  • SMB 1.0/CIFS File Sharing Support
  • Windows PowerShell 2.0
  • Media Features (which is the same as uninstalling Windows Media Player in the above section)

As above, you can re-enable them in future if there’s a need.


What are your go-to actions to unclutter Windows? Share with us in the comments below.

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