One of the most common issues Windows users face while trying to install or uninstall an application on any version of the Windows Operating System is one where the installation or uninstallation fails, and the user affected by the problem sees an error message that states:
“The feature you are trying to use is on a network resource that is unavailable“
The error message advises the user to simply click on OK to retry the installation – which, in most cases, yields the same results – or manually type in an alternate path to the folder that contains the installation/uninstallation package. While the error message itself states that the feature that the installation/uninstallation package is trying to access is in a location that is, for some reason, unavailable to the installation/uninstallation process, the root of this problem is not always as simple as that.
This issue can be caused by anything from the Windows Installer service simply not running for some reason to corrupt or otherwise unrecognizable registry values belonging to the program you are trying to install or uninstall. Thankfully, though, this issue can be resolved and you can even resolve it on your own. The following are some of the most effective solutions that you can use to try and fix this problem:
Solution 1: Make sure that the Windows Installer service is running
If the Windows Installer service is not running on your computer, there’s a chance any installations and/or uninstallations you attempt will fail. If you are experiencing this problem, making sure that the Windows Installer service is running is a good place to start in your journey to getting rid of it. To make sure that the Windows Installer service is running, you need to:
- Press the Windows Logo key + R to open a Run dialog.
- Type services.msc into the Run dialog and press Enter.
- In the Services manager, scroll down the list of services you have on your computer and locate and right-click on the Windows Installer service.
- Click on Properties in the resulting context menu.
- Open the dropdown menu located directly in front of Startup type and click on Automatic to select it.
- If the service’s Service status says Stopped, click on Start. If the service’s Service status says Started, skip this step.
- Click on Apply and then on OK.
- Close the Services manager.
- Restart your computer.
When the computer boots up, try installing or uninstalling the program you were facing this issue with before and see whether the process ends up being successful.
Solution 2: Download a different copy of the installer or download one to a different location
You might be experiencing this issue because the installer you are using to try and install or uninstall the affected program is somehow damaged or corrupted, or the directory you have downloaded it to is having problems communicating with the rest of your computer. If that’s the case, simply downloading a different copy of the installer and/or downloading one to a different location on your computer and using it to install or uninstall the affected program should be enough to get the job done.
Solution 3: Run the Program Install and Uninstall Troubleshooter
The folks at Microsoft know that Windows users sometimes face an array of different problems while trying to install and uninstall programs on basically every version of the Windows Operating System, this problem included. That being the case, Microsoft has developed and released a troubleshooter for Windows that has been expressly designed for the sole purpose of fixing the most common issues that have been known to bother Windows users while they install or uninstall programs on their computers. To run this troubleshooter, referred to as the Program Install and Uninstall Troubleshooter, you need to:
- Click here or here to download the Program Install and Uninstall Troubleshooter.
- Wait for the troubleshooter to be downloaded.
- Navigate to where you downloaded the troubleshooter and double-click on it to run it.
- Follow the onscreen instructions and go through the troubleshooter all the way to the very end.
- The troubleshooter will try to detect and repair issues such as corrupted registry values and damaged registry keys and other problems that prevent new programs from being installed and/or old ones from being uninstalled. Allow the troubleshooter to do what it has been designed to do.
Once you’ve successfully run the Program Install and Uninstall Troubleshooter, restart your computer and check to see whether or not the issue persists when the computer boots up.
Solution 4: Delete a specific registry key
- Press the Windows Logo key + R to open a Run dialog.
- Type regedit into the Run dialog and press Enter to open the Registry Editor.
- In the left pane of the Registry Editor, navigate to the following directory:
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > SOFTWARE > Classes > Installer
- In the right pane of the Registry Editor, double-click on the Products sub-key under the Installer key to expand it, and then one by one, click on each of the sub-keys under the Products key to have their contents displayed in the right pane of the Registry Editor. You need to check out the Product Name registry string (REG_SZ) for each of the sub-keys under the Products key as their Value data will contain the name of the program that specific registry key is for. You need to keep going until you find the sub-key belonging to the program you are having problems installing or uninstalling.
- Once you find the sub-key belonging to the affected program, right-click on the sub-key and click on Delete.
- Click on Yes in the resulting popup to confirm the action.
- Once the sub-key belonging to the program that spits out the “The feature you are trying to use is on a network resource that is unavailable” error message whenever you are trying to install or uninstall it has been deleted, close the Registry Editor and restart the computer.
When the computer boots up, be sure to run the installer package for the installation/uninstallation of the affected program in order to check whether or not the issue has actually been resolved.