How to Uninstall Applications on a Mac

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How to Uninstall Applications on a Mac

Have you ever wondered how to remove a program from your Mac? If you’ve previously used a Windows device, you may be used to removing a software via the Control Panel. Unfortunately, no such option exists on macOS. On a Mac, uninstalling a software is a little simpler, but it’s not as evident.

The simplest option is to simply remove the software or app from the Applications folder. However, the software often leaves some traces behind. Look through the alternatives below to discover how to remove programs on a Mac in a variety of ways.

Uninstalling vs. Deleting Apps on a Mac

On macOS, uninstalling a program generally entails removing it from the Applications folder. If you’re coming from a Windows PC, this may seem unusual, but removing a program on macOS won’t damage anything. So, whether you want to “uninstall” or “remove” an app, you must follow the identical steps outlined below.

Option 1. Move Apps to the Trash

The easiest approach to remove a software or app from your Mac is to drag it to the Trash. You must remove an app from the Applications folder in Finder; you cannot uninstall an app by dragging its icon from the Dock to the Trash. Then, Control-click on the Trash icon on the Dock and choose Empty Trash to permanently remove the program. If you are unable to clear the Trash, first ensure that the program is not operating in the background.

This approach deletes all of the program’s files from the Applications folder, which may include items other than the app itself. Control-click a program and choose Show Package Contents to see its contents. While most software will remove fully using this approach, some may leave behind library or other associated files. Instead, use the following way to remove everything from a specific app.

macOS handles software files in two distinct ways. Aside from the program itself, there are accompanying files scattered across the file system. These may be in the Library folder or in a separate connected folder in a different location. To thoroughly remove a software, you must also delete any related (junk) files. This will allow you to free up storage space on your Mac while also making your system perform more smoothly.

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Option 2. Use AppCleaner to Fully Delete Apps

AppCleaner is a free program that allows you to erase all files related with an app. When you launch AppCleaner, you’ll see a blank space where you may drop any app you wish to remove. AppCleaner may also be used to remove undesirable programs that came with your Mac, such as iMovie, GarageBand, Pages, and others.

The finest feature of AppCleaner is the transparency it provides throughout the uninstalling process. When you click on the name of a program, a list of all its connected files appears. The software will automatically identify relevant files for deletion.

You may also configure AppCleaner to destroy any linked Library files when you uninstall an app. To do so, go to the SmartDelete tab in AppCleaner’s Preferences pane. Then, flip the switch to the ON position. When you transfer an app to the Trash, a prompt will appear asking whether you want to move any related files to the Trash as well. Simply uncheck the things you don’t want to erase and click the Remove button.

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Certain firms’ applications come with their own installers when you download them. These programs install their own assistance and update tools, making it far more difficult to entirely delete them afterwards.

Option 3. Use Dedicated App Uninstallers

Adobe, in particular, overcomplicates the procedure. Even if you uninstall an Adobe application, the assistant utility and menu bar app will continue to stay put. Even utilizing an app like AppCleaner won’t help in these situations.

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The only method to remove such programs is to use their own uninstaller. To begin, use Spotlight (or Finder search) and look for the program name followed by “uninstaller.” If you come across one, open it and begin the removal procedure. In this instance, Adobe Creative Cloud can assist you in deleting certain programs.

If you can’t locate it on your Mac, try Google. Some applications will allow you to delete them by downloading an app-specific uninstaller.

The Library folder contains application resources. These are the files that a program needs to run correctly. Unless you use Program Cleaner, when you remove an app on your Mac, the linked or connected files in the Library folder normally remain.

Playing with Library files might be hazardous. If you remove a file that is critical to macOS, you may experience crashes and data loss. However, if you know what you’re doing and simply want to remove particular files connected to an app, proceed as follows:

Terminal is a great tool for taking control of your situation. Instead of installing and relying on a third-party program, you may do the task with a single command. Even if you’re new to Terminal, you can remove a program with a single command. Simply launch Terminal from the Applications > Utilities menu and enter the following command:

  1. By default, the Library folder is hidden. To reveal it, launch Finder and hold down the Option key while clicking the Go button in the menu bar. Select Library from the dropdown menu.
  2. Now, press the Search option and type in the name of the program or file you’re searching for. To limit the search to the Library folder, click the Library icon.
  3. When you identify a similar file, pick it and delete it. You’ll delete the file from your system after emptying the Trash.
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Option 5. Uninstall Mac Apps Using the Terminal

Then, drag the program icon to the Terminal window, which will automatically input the app’s path. As follows (the third slash before Applications is standard):

sudo uninstall file://

Enter your password, then press Enter, and Terminal will delete the software for you. If you have any difficulties, try the following command instead:

sudo uninstall file:///Applications/vlc.app

Before clicking Enter, add a single space to the end of the command and drag the program into Terminal to enter the path.

sudo rm -rf 

as an example When using the sudo rm -rf command, use extreme care. Incorrectly inserting a route might result in data loss.

sudo rm -rf /Applications/vlc.app

You now know how to remove programs on a Mac in every possible method. Normally, removing an app means that the program and all of its data are fully deleted from your Mac. However, if any data remains, you may erase it from your Mac using any of the ways listed above.

Uninstalling an App on Your Mac Is Easy

Now you know how to uninstall apps on a Mac in every way imaginable. Usually, deleting an app will result in the app and all its data being completely removed from your Mac. But in the rare case that some data does remain, you can use any of the methods above to remove it from your Mac.

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