How To Completely Remove A Mac App And All Of Its Settings

Here's how you can completely remove a Mac app on OS X along with all of its saved settings and preferences. Once done, you'll be left with no leftover app residue, settings whatsoever.


Whenever we delete an app from OS X, we're left under the impression that everything goes to trash with it. But that's strictly not the case. Whenever you delete an app, some of its files and settings get left behind. For example, if you delete the Mozilla Firefox browser, your cache and history files are left over in your hard drive, which in turn takes up space. And if you want to get rid of those files, then there are two routes you can take, and we'll explain each one. But first, we'll show you how to delete an app on OS X.

Removing A Mac App

There are two ways you can remove a Mac app, either from the Launchpad or directly from the Applications folder. If you're taking the Launchpad route, then you need to perform the following steps.

1. Open Launchpad.

2. Now look for the app you wish to remove. Click and hold on it till the icon starts jiggling.

3. You'll see a little 'x' icon on the corner. Click on it, and confirm your action for deleting the app.

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You might notice that there are some apps which can't be deleted by the above mentioned method. In that case, you will need to go to the Applications folder and delete an app from there. Here's how it's done.

1. Open Finder.

2. Click on the 'Applications' in the side bar.

3. Now hunt for the app you want to delete and simply drag it to the trashcan in your OS X Dock.

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Removing Settings And Preferences Of A Deleted App

1. First and foremost, open up Finder.

2. Now press the CMD + Shift + G key combination to bring up the 'Go to the folder' popup.

There are two locations where you'll find leftover files from a deleted app. Go to each one and delete all corresponding files pertaining to the deleted app.

/Library/Application Support


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Removing Settings And Preferences The Easy Way

Find the above method a little cumbersome. Don't panic, there are apps on the Mac App Store that let you achieve the same thing quickly and easily. One such offering goes by the name of 'App Cleaner,' and is an absolutely free download. You can grab the app from here.


App Cleaner even lets you reset an app to its default state, saving you the time of uninstalling it and reinstalling it all over again.

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