XP: Should I uninstall or upgrade Microsoft Java Virtual Machine (JVM)?

Posted September 6, 2004 by MickeyMouse in Windows

Even though they both try to do the same things, java from Sun and java from Microsoft are very different things. Here is how to run them or uninstall them.

Java is everywhere. The most confusing thing about java is that both Sun and Microsoft have released virtual machines for XP. Honestly, both of them work well for most stuff. Most believe, however, that Sun’s version is much more secure and stable.

A lot of people believe that everybody should switch over to Sun’s java completely. That is probably true; however, I have seen a lot of problems from people trying to uninstall the microsoft version of java. Therefore, I will describe how to uninstall microsoft’s version and how to just “turn it off” but leave it installed.

Here’s where to download the latest Sun version of java:

Here’s how to turn the Microsoft Java Virtual Machine off:

    1. Open an IE window and click on the Tools menu
    2. Click on Internet Options
    3. Click on the Advanced tab
    4. Scroll down to Java(Sun) and make sure the checkmark beside Use Java 2 v1.42_04 for
    is selected. If you don’t have this section, then you don’t have the Sun version of java installed.
    5. Scroll down to Microsoft VM section and uncheck everything there. If you don’t have this section, then you don’t have Microsoft’s version of java installed.
    6. Click OK (and you may or may not be asked to reboot here depending on what your prior selections were).
    7. Open your Control Panel
    8. Click the Java Plug-In icon (in the classic view)
    9. Select the Browser tab
    10. Click the checkmarks for all the browsers that you have in your system.
    11. Click Apply
    12. You will probably need to reboot once again.

    Here’s how to remove your Microsoft Java Virtual Machine:

    Note: I would strongly recommend just turning it off. Why uninstall it? Anyway, here’s the directions in case you have a problem that isn’t fixed by just disabling it. After you do this, you will need to install the java from sun.

      1. Click the Start menu
      2. Click Run.
      3. Enter the following command into the textbox:
      RunDll32 advpack.dll,LaunchINFSection java.inf,UnInstall

      4. Click Yes to confirm
      5. Reboot.
      6. After the reboot you’ll need to delete the following:
      (note: %systemroot% is c:\windows on most systems)


      \%systemroot%\java folder

      Registry Keys:

      The HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\AdvancedOptions\JAVA_VM

    Reboot, reinstall java, and you should be done.

    Disclaimer: If you are not comfortable editing the registry and system files, don’t try to uninstall Microsoft’s virtual machine. If you do, please create a restore point first!

    The Conversation

    Follow the reactions below and share your own thoughts.