SQL 2016 Express with Visual Studio 2017 "Cannot find one or more components. Please reinstall the application" HELP!


  • I have just had my motherboard break and had to format the disk and reinstall windows and then reinstalled all my software.

    I foolishly just copied a backup of all my program files into the appropriate place and then tested which worked and which did not and then re-install the ones that were not working.  As an aside virtually all non-microsoft products just carried on working through the short cuts and almost all of the Microsoft products needed reinstalling.

    Before this disaster I had been using SQL Server 2016 Express edition with Visual Studio 2015 Community Edition with no problem.  I would be happy to continue with that setup.

    However, Visual Studio was not working and I would have reinstalled Visual Studio 2015 Community Edition as before but The website allows access to 2017,  I cannot access the old version without paying $299 for the privilege.

    So I installed the free Visual Studio 2017 community edition and that appears to be working

    I then reinstalled SQL Server 2016 Express edition which starts the install and does not think the previous instance is installed: SQLEXPRESS2016.  However, half way through the install it suddenly recognizes that there are parts of it already installed and refuses to install the rest and the installation fails.

    Similarly if I try to uninstall it.  The initial scan cannot see it and so refuses to uninstall it.

    So I cannot install it or uninstall it and need help to forcefully uninstall all files, services, registry settings, etc. for all instances.

    And yes, I have got a backup of all my data including the system data.

    I want to start over with a clean slate.

    I would like instructions on how to do this and I may need a offline installer for "Visual Studio Isolated Shell 2015" if it is not included.  See below.

    To get around this I was going to ignore the old instance and create a new instance : SQLEXPRESS. (Previously that had been used by one of the earlier versions of SQL Server Express, that I was no longer using)

    This appears to install correctly.  However when I try to run SSMS I get the error:

    "Cannot find one or more components. Please reinstall the application"

    Searching for this error for "SQL Server 2016 Express Edition" It says to delete

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SQL Server Management Studio\13.0_Config

    Not feeling confident about doing something that drastic I renamed it

    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\SQL Server Management Studio\13.0_Config_dead_version

    and if that does not work, which it did not, I need to install:

    "Visual Studio Isolated Shell 2015"

    Guess what when I try to find this it redirects me to install

    "Visual Studio 2017"

    No! that is not what I need. :<(

    Out of desperation I went back to my original installer for "Visual Studio 2015 Community Edition". However that failed with loads of errors. I am guessing that me being a cheapscape I no longer have the right privileges to download the files.

    Can someone please tell me how to forcefully uninstall all instances of SQL Server.

    I suspect going back to my installers for earlier version would not gain me anything because all my data is 2016 format and older versions even if they did install would not be able to read them

    With Thanks

    Robin Murison

    Thursday, March 30, 2017 6:46 PM

All replies

  • Hi RobinMurison,


    You can remove all SQL Server instances from your machine by using the following steps:


    1. Uninstall all SQL Server components in Control Panel -> Programs and Features.


    1. Backup the registry and operate on the following keys:


    --Delete HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Microsoft SQL Server


    --Find HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall and delete all the sub-keys referencing SQL Server.

    --Find HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services and delete all the keys referencing SQL Server.


    1. Rename all the SQL Server folders in the computer like C:\Program Files\Microsoft SQL Server and subfolders.


    You can download Microsoft Visual Studio Community 2015 from this link:


    You may need uninstalling SSMS for the error "Cannot find one or more components. Please reinstall the application". After operation all above steps, please install SQL Server 2016 Express first (it will install Visual Studio Isolated Shell 2015 itself if you install it connecting to Internet), then SSMS, then Visual Studio 2015.


    Best Regards,


    MSDN Community Support
    Please remember to click "Mark as Answer" the responses that resolved your issue, and to click "Unmark as Answer" if not. This can be beneficial to other community members reading this thread. If you have any compliments or complaints to MSDN Support, feel free to contact

    Friday, March 31, 2017 2:11 AM
  • How to install VS 2017 and SQL Server 2016 and SQL Server Management Studio 2017.2 together? Whe I try to run SSMS 2017.2 I get same error:

    "Cannot find one or more components. Please reinstall the application." When I try to reinstall it fails.

    I read suggestions about VS 2015, but didn't find any solution for VS 2017.

    Saturday, September 16, 2017 1:25 PM