How to Delete Mac Application Software

Published by Derrick Jennings

Apple Mac computers are noted for their good design and for their ease-of-use. These are some of the properties that we associate with quality.

Delete an application program from a mac.

Unfortunately, when the time comes to remove and delete an application from the Mac good design is nowhere to be found.

If you’re familiar with Microsoft Windows then you will know that there is a utility that makes it possible to view all of the installed applications and to remove any that are no longer required. This is an example of good design and it makes this aspect of Windows software easy-to-use.

Apple’s OS X (Mac OS) does not have a similar utility. A user must manually locate and then delete all of an application’s data. This is an example of really poor design. It places a significant burden on the user who has no easy way to identify the individual components of an application or a standard way in which to locate them. Failure to remove all of the extraneous application components could affect a Mac’s performance.

So where should you look?

The main program will probably be located in the Applications Folder. This is a good place to start as it is where most user installed Mac software lives. After that you can try searching the locations that are listed below for anything that is related to the deleted application. Be very careful when deciding what to remove from these folders as you could break an unrelated application.

  • /Library/Application Support
  • /Library/LaunchAgents
  • /Library/LaunchDaemons
  • /Library/PreferencePanes
  • /Library/Preferences
  • /Library/StartupItems
  • ~/Library/Application Support
  • ~/Library/LaunchAgents
  • ~/Library/LaunchDaemons
  • ~/Library/PreferencePanes
  • ~/Library/Preferences
  • ~/Library/StartupItems
  • /System/Library/LaunchAgents
  • /System/Library/LaunchDaemons
  • /System/Library/StartupItems

OS X (Mac OS) has been available in it’s various forms for more than a decade and Apple should take steps to addressed the shortcomings in the management of this aspect of an application’s lifecycle.

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