I had a temporary need to use MS SQL server, so I installed Microsoft SQL Server 2016 CTP3.3 on my Windows 7 machine because it was easily available. It installed successfully, and I was able to get my work done with it. However, I no longer need it anymore. When I try to uninstall it using the Windows 7 Programs and Features control panel, I get the following error:

The operating system on this computer or its service pack level does not meet the minimum requirements for SQL Server 2016 CTP3.3. To determine the minimum required operating system supported for this SQL Sever release, see Hardware and Software Requirements for installing SQL Server 2016 CTP3.3 at

Error Message Text:

The operating system on this computer or its service pack level does not meet the minimum requirements for SQL Server 2016 CTP3.3. To determine the minimum required operating system supported for this SQL Sever release, see Hardware and Software Requirements for installing SQL Server 2016 CTP3.3 at:

http://go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkID=398123

Checking the link (which redirects to ms143506), it appears SQL Server 2016 does not support Windows 7, only Windows 8 and above.

You read that right, the installer appears to only check to see if OS is supported on uninstall, but happily allowed installation on an unsupported OS. This seems to prevent the software from being removed at all.

How can I work around this problem and successfully remove SQL Server 2016 CTP3.3 from my Windows 7 computer?

up vote 3 down vote accepted

I figured it out. Apparently the MS SQL Server installer also has a remove/uninstall function that separate from the one that gets invoked from the Programs and Features control panel. Luckily I saved the installer file.

What I did:

  1. Launch the installer (SSMS-Full-Setup.exe in my case).
  2. If you've previously installed it, a Remove button should be available. Click it.
  3. It will spend quite a bit of time loading plugins and other components. Wait for it. It will begin the uninstall automatically once it's ready.
  4. You should see this screen when it completes:
  5. It will not uninstall a few of its dependencies (such as .Net, Visual C++, Visual Studio, and some other SQL server things).

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