84,488,480 programs installed

Should I remove Microsoft Help Viewer?

What percent of users and experts removed it?
5% remove it95% keep it
Overall Sentiment
What do people think about it?
(click star to rate)
How common is it?
Global Rank #861
United States Rank #1,097
Reach 0.7930%
Lifespan of installation (until removal)
< 12.25 days
361.26 days >
Average installed length: 189.82 days


2.1.30324 1.22%
2.1.30304 0.01%
2.1.30219 0.02%
2.1.21005 96.34%
2.1.20827 1.48%
2.1.20617 0.93%
2.1.20430 0.01%

Other programs by Microsoft

Microsoft Help Viewer 2.1


Microsoft Help Viewer 2.1 is a software program developed by Microsoft. The most common release is 2.1.21005, with over 98% of all installations currently using this version. It adds registry entry for the current user which will allow the program to automatically start each time it is rebooted. The primary executable is named HlpViewer.exe. The setup package generally installs about 5 files and is usually about 11.19 MB (11,735,884 bytes). Relative to the overall usage of users who have this installed on their PCs, most are running Windows 10 and Windows 7 (SP1). While about 43% of users of Microsoft Help Viewer come from the United States, it is also popular in United Kingdom and Germany.

Program detailsProgram details

Help link: go.microsoft.com/fwlink/?LinkId=133405
Installation folder: C:\Program Files\Microsoft Help Viewer\v2.1\
Uninstaller: msiexec.exe /X{AAF6AA87-0135-32E3-A8F4-3C0E5AFFF7B2}
(The Windows Installer is used for the installation, maintenance, and removal.)
Estimated size: 11.19 MB

Program filesFiles installed by Microsoft Help Viewer 2.1

Program executable:HlpViewer.exe
Name:Microsoft Help Viewer
Path:C:\Program Files\Microsoft Help Viewer\v2.1\HlpViewer.exe
Additional files:
  • HlpCtntMgr.exe - Microsoft Help Viewer
  • HlpViewer.exe
  • Microsoft.VisualStudio.Help.dll
  • Microsoft.VisualStudio.Help.Runtime.dll

Program behaviorsBehaviors exhibited

Startup File (User Run)
  • HlpCtntMgr.exe is loaded in the current user (HKCU) registry as an auto-starting executable named 'VSHelpUpdate_VisualStudio12' and executes as C:\Program Files\Microsoft Help Viewer\v2.1\HlpCtntMgr.exe /operation restart /catalogName VisualStudio12 /restart UpdateCommand /locale zh-CN.

How do I remove Microsoft Help Viewer?

You can uninstall Microsoft Help Viewer from your computer by using the Add/Remove Program feature in the Window's Control Panel.
  1. On the Start menu (for Windows 8, right-click the screen's bottom-left corner), click Control Panel, and then, under Programs, do one of the following:
    • Windows Vista/7/8/10: Click Uninstall a Program.
    • Windows XP: Click Add or Remove Programs.
  2. When you find the program Microsoft Help Viewer 2.1, click it, and then do one of the following:
    • Windows Vista/7/8/10: Click Uninstall.
    • Windows XP: Click the Remove or Change/Remove tab (to the right of the program).
  3. Follow the prompts. A progress bar shows you how long it will take to remove Microsoft Help Viewer.

Win 10 62%
Win XP 0%
Auto-starting? Yes
(Found in the run registry)
Uninstall it 5%
Keep it 95%

Windows OS versionsWindows

Which Windows OS versions does it run on?
Windows 10 61.61%
Windows 7 38.38%
Windows XP 0.01%
Which OS releases does it run on?
Windows 8.1 Pro 15.71%
Windows 8.1 14.79%
Windows 7 Home Premium 12.81%
Windows 7 Professional 11.66%
Windows 7 Ultimate 10.78%
Windows 10 Home 8.21%

Distribution by countryGeography

42.88% of installs come from the United States
Which countries install it?
  United States 42.88%
  United Kingdom 4.94%
  Germany 3.64%
  France 3.43%
  Canada 3.06%
  Italy 2.86%
  Netherlands 2.31%
  Brazil 2.02%
  India 1.97%
  Australia 1.61%
  Turkey 1.28%
  Sweden 1.27%
  Korea 1.16%
  Belgium 1.14%

OEM distributionPC manufacturers

What PC manufacturers (OEMs) have it installed?
Hewlett-Packard 22.28%
Dell 20.78%
ASUS 16.43%
Acer 11.26%
Lenovo 9.51%
Toshiba 5.50%
Samsung 3.53%
MSI 1.73%
Alienware 1.55%
Intel 1.47%
Apple 0.82%
Common models
ASUS All Series 11.11%
HP Pavilion g6 Notebook P... 4.23%
HP Pavilion dv6 Notebook ... 3.74%
HP Pavilion 15 Notebook P... 3.28%
Dell Inspiron 3521 2.17%
LENOVO 20217 2.09%

About Microsoft

Microsoft Corporation develops, manufactures, licenses and supports a variety of products and services related to computing.
Publisher URL: www.microsoft.com

comments1 comment

user comment
user comment
A_Support Officerover a year ago
This is the default Help Viewer for Visual Studio 2012 and newer. If you also use SQL Server 2012, I suggest adding the help content for SQL products to Help Viewer 2.1, and making a shortcut available on your desktop or taskbar. This way you only use one version of help Viewer and need only that one copy of the help content on you computer to save space.