How do I uninstall Sygate Enforcement Agent without uninstall password?
February 12, 2007 3:06 PM   Subscribe

How do I uninstall Sygate Enforcement Agent without uninstall password?

Was just given an old laptop w/ WXPSP2 installed on it. It also has an app called Sygate Enforcement Agent installed in the Add/Remove programs control panel. Attempting to remove this, even with administrator rights, brings up a window asking for a password. I assume this is some sort of corporate policy app, but any ideas on how to remove it, short of something drastic like formatting the drive -- I don't have a way to find out what the password is.

posted by arathorn to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
Sygate Enforcement Agent is part of their Enterprise Protection product. The password would have been set up by the network administrator at the time of installation. Unless you can get in touch with that person and get the password, I don't know that you can do much short of a reformat.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:16 PM on February 12, 2007

Also, I'm sure you tried the obvious: "Sygate" "sygate" "password", etc., right?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 3:19 PM on February 12, 2007

Also, if this is an ex-corporate laptop, the fact that it's still got policy apps installed on it probably means that it wasn't wiped and reinstalled before it left the corporation, which in turn means that it's probably still running a volume-licenced copy of XP, which in turn means that whoever gave it to you for use outside the corporation has breached the terms of the corporate Windows EULA. Your best course is to check back with the person who gave it to you.

If it were mine, I'd be wiping the whole thing and installing Ubuntu, but that's possibly too drastic for you.
posted by flabdablet at 4:27 PM on February 12, 2007

I am not familiar with this specific program or what it does to Windows, but:

It may not be necessary to uninstall the application. It may be easier to simply deactivate it; but before you try that, you should attempt to uninstall the program while in safe mode. McCaffee privacy service, amongst others, will not allow itself to be removed w/o password in normal mode, but will go meekly when windows is in safe mode, in my experience.

If safe mode uninstall does not work, render the program inactive using the following steps (these instructions assume you are using Windows XP):
1) While in safe mode, click Start => Run and type msconfig.
2) In the config tool, click the "Startup" Tab and find and un-check any items that seem to be associated with the Sygate program or its home folders.
3) Click the "Services" tab and check the "hide all Microsoft Services" box. Then find and uncheck any items that seem to be associated with the Sygate program or its home folders.
4) Restart the computer in normal mode.

With any luck, this will disable the program without uninstalling it. Good luck!
posted by BigLankyBastard at 6:46 AM on February 13, 2007

This one's tricky, but doable. The first step is to right-click on "My Computer" and choose Manage. In the left hand pane, expand "Services and Applications", then expand "Services. Find the Sygate service in the list and double-click on it. Change the Startup Type to "Disabled", click OK and reboot. The service should now not be running and you should be good. However, sometimes these kinds of things are setup so you can't change the startup type, in which case:

At the top of the dialog that pops up when you double-click the service, on the General tab, you'll see "Service Name: " followed by the "short name" of the service. Remember that name.

Now Start -> Run and type in regedit in the box. On the left hand side again, expand "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE", expand System, then CurrentControlSet, then Services. Underneath that, you should see the short name from the step above. Click on it once. On the right hand side, you'll see a list of values. Double-click on the one labeled "Start". In the box labeled "Value Data", put the number 4 and click OK. Now, reboot.

What you've done is back doored the service and set it to Disabled. If those didn't work, report back and we'll see where we can get you. Uninstalling it is most likely not an option for you without the password. You can pull out your axe and hack away at the registry, but unless you know exactly what you're doing, that's not a good idea. :)
posted by Spoonman at 6:55 AM on February 13, 2007

Spoonman's advice may also work, but PLEASE be careful directly changing the registry, and bear in mind that the program may be running more than one "service."
posted by BigLankyBastard at 6:58 AM on February 13, 2007

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