Which software is safe to remove from a ThinkPad?


So Lenovo is known for installing a lot of software on their computers, and unfortunately I have some of this on mine.
This is a list of what I might want to remove from my computer. My question is, is it safe?

I want to keep the neat function of scrolling by tapping the touchpad with two fingers and dragging.

  • Adobe AIR
  • Create Recovery Media
  • Dolby Advanced Audio v2
  • Lenovo Auto Scroll Utility
  • Lenovo Bluetooth with Enhanced Data Rate Software
  • Lenovo Power Management Driver
  • Lenovo Registration
  • Lenovo SimpleTap
  • Lenovo System Update
  • Lenovo User Guide
  • Lenovo Warranty Information
  • Lenovo Welcome
  • Message Center Plus
  • Microsoft Silverlight
  • Nitro Pro 7
  • Power Manager
  • RapidBoot HDD Accelerator
  • RapidBoot Shield
  • SugarSync Manager
  • ThinkPad UltraNav Driver
  • ThinkVantage Active Protection System
  • ThinkVantage Communications Utility
  • VIP Access
  • Windows Live Essentials

The last one is a bit clunky because the name on the computer is in Swedish, but it's called "Visa på skärmen", which translates to "Show on the screen", I'm assuming it has something to do with the light level and sound level being showed on the screen.

Best Answer

"Safe" is a relative term. As long as you're not removing components of Windows (and none of these seem to be that), the operating system will still function without any of these things. However, removing drivers may degrade the performance or capability of some pieces of your hardware.

I want to keep the neat function of scrolling by tapping the touchpad with two fingers and dragging.

So don't remove the Auto Scroll Utility or UltraNav driver or SimpleTap.

For things like "Dolby Advanced Audio v2", you can remove it, but you may have less features for your sound card (e.g. no Dolby enhancement or surround sound).

I'd think the crapware names should be fairly obvious, but here they are (out of that list):

Adobe AIR, Lenovo Registration, Lenovo User Guide, Lenovo Warranty Information, Lenovo Welcome, Message Center Plus, Nitro Pro 7, RapidBoot*, SugarSync Manager, VIP Access, and Windows Live Essentials.

The remaining bits actually provide hardware functionality. The obvious thing to do here is to keep them if you don't know if you need them, but if you know for a fact that you'll never ever ever use that piece of hardware, it's safe to remove.

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