Exchange 2010 SP1 fails with: Setup previously failed while performing the action “Uninstall”.

While installing Microsoft Exchange 2010 SP1, the setup might fail with the following error

Setup previously failed while performing the action “Uninstall”. You can’t resume setup by performing the action “BuildToBuildUpgrade”.

The error will look like the below depending if you are using the GUI or CLI



To solve this problem you will need to edit the registry using regedit tool

Disclaimer: Using Registry Editor incorrectly can cause serious problems that may require you to reinstall your operating system. ZeroHourSleep cannot guarantee that problems resulting from the incorrect use of Registry Editor can be solved. Use Registry Editor at your own risk.

On the Exchange server you are having trouble open open regedit and browse to HKLocalMachine\Software\Microsoft\ExchangeServer\V14 and check the roles Keys, MailboxRole in my case, and delete the Action and Watermark keys.


You should be fine to roll now

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3 comments on “Exchange 2010 SP1 fails with: Setup previously failed while performing the action “Uninstall”.
  1. Mrehman says:

    thanks it helped.

  2. farewelldave says:

    thanks, this fixed my ability to uninstall the Hub Transport Role on a failed Exchange 2010 installation. The “Action” and “Watermark” entries were inside the “HubTransportRole” key for my unique issue, so I would assume that whichever role was giving you a problem uninstalling/installing that’s the key to look under.

  3. Moss says:

    solved my problem, thanks

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