Macromedia Flash Player is a popular utility used by programmers today to develop interactive websites. Flash Player is embedded in web pages with the help of ActiveX controls. These controls enable programmers to include those features and functionalities in your Internet Explorer Web pages that are not included in it by default. Flash.ocx is the ActiveX file used by Flash Player 6 and swflash.ocx is the ActiveX file used by earlier versions.
Why do I need to uninstall Flash Player?
Although useful, you might want to uninstall your current Flash Player for the following reasons:
- You keep receiving the error message:
“The flash component flash.ocx is missing”
- You want to upgrade your current Flash Player and want to perform a clean install.
- You want to fix problems with your current Flash Player.
Many users have reported that they were able to resolve the error by renaming the most recent Flash.ocx file. So, it is worth giving the following steps a try before you uninstall and reinstall Flash Player.
- Open Windows Explorer.
- Navigate to C:\Windows\System32\Macromed\Flash and locate and select flash*.ocx file
Note: ‘flash*.ocx’ is a variable and stands for the version of flash.ocx file installed on your computer. For instance, if you use Flash 9, then flash*.ocx will be flash9.ocx. In case more than one versions of flash.ocx are listed, select the latest one)
- Click on the file’s icon, press Ctrl+C and then press Ctrl+V.
- Rename the new file to Flash.
- Close all running applications and restart Windows.
- Run the program that reported flash.ocx error to check if the issue is resolved.
In case you still are receiving the error, proceed with uninstallation of Flash Player. The information shared below guides you on how to uninstall Flash Player from your Windows computer.
How to uninstall Flash Player 9 and 10
Uninstalling Flash Player 9 or Flash Player 10 is fairly easy. You can uninstall the newer versions of Flash Player using the built-in Windows uninstaller, Add or Remove Programs.
Use the following steps to uninstall Flash Player 9 or Flash Player 10.
- Click Start>Control Panel>Add or Remove Programs.
- Locate and select Flash Player in the Currently installed programs list.
- Click Uninstall/Remove.
- If prompted, restart Windows.
What to do when you are unable to remove Flash Player using Add or Remove Programs
If you are unable to uninstall via conventional method, that is, via Add or Remove Programs, then perform the following step to remove Flash player.
- Download the Adobe Flash Player uninstaller.
- Save the uninstaller exe file on your desktop.
- Close all running applications.
Note: You must close all running applications, especially those that use Adobe Flash Player before running the Adobe Flash Player uninstaller. Popular applications that use Adobe Flash Player include – your Web Browser, Instant Messaging clients, Files with .swf file extension, and .exe files that play rich media content. To close your Instant Messaging client, click the system tray and if you find icons for Instant Messaging (IM) clients, such as Yahoo! Messenger or AOL Instant Messenger then click on the icon and select Exit.
- Double-click the Adobe Flash Player uninstaller.
- Click Yes when you see the message “Do you want to allow the following program to make changes to this computer?”
- Restart Windows after the uninstallation process is complete.
- Open the About Adobe Flash Player page to check if Flash Payer was completely removed or not.
If the page tells you that Flash Player couldn’t be found or a broken image, such as a question mark appears in place of Version Information box, then it means the Flash Player was successfully uninstalled.
What you must do after uninstalling Flash Player
After the uninstallation is complete, you can download the most recent version of Flash player and install it on your system without any errors. However, before you reinstall, we recommend that you use a registry cleaner tool such as PCHealthBoost to scan the registry for any orphan files left behind by Flash Player and remove them. By doing this, you ensure a clean uninstall and are more likely to have an error-free installation of the new version of Flash Player.
Flash Player is commonly embedded in websites using ActiveX controls to make them interactive. If you are frequented by Flash.ocx errors or you are unable to upgrade to a newer Flash Player version, then you will have to uninstall the current version. You can remove Flash Player either manually or by downloading the Flash Player Removal tool.