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How to eliminate application completely?

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Get a program like AppZapper, Cleanapp or the like ( i know theres at least one freeware if you search macfreeware.com ), or manually go through the ~/Library and /Library folders and remove whatevers leftover when you drag an app to the trash.

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Get a program like AppZapper, Cleanapp or the like ( i know theres at least one freeware if you search macfreeware.com ), or manually go through the ~/Library and /Library folders and remove whatevers leftover when you drag an app to the trash.

or just do a spotlight search and delete everything that comes up

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sometimes searching in Spotlight doesnt find EVERYTHING. i really like AppZapper.

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Of course, AppZapper will not always find everything. I believe they claim it finds everything in 90% of the cases.

 

However, a computer is not a closet. You don't have to remove everything like it is dust, nor can you in all cases. If you use AppZapper you'll be fine in most cases.

 

If you're paranoid about leaving stuff in, save your data as a backup (on CDs, DVDs, USB stick(s), or an external harddisk), format the harddisk and reinstall OS X, so you have a clean install. Then reinstall your programs and restore your data from your backup disks. Because this is a lot of work, you will probably do this only if you're suffering from "bit rot", and cleaning out caches, etc. doesn't help. Luckily, reinstalling isn't really necessary in most cases for Mac OS X, but for Windows this is recurring ritual, sometimes every six months if you install and uninstall programs often.

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I'll put my vote in for clean app. It has a dashboard widget which is pretty cool. You start dragging the app, hit F12 and then just release it onto the widget. Cleanapp starts and asks you what you want to do. Simple!

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I'll put my vote in for clean app. It has a dashboard widget which is pretty cool. You start dragging the app, hit F12 and then just release it onto the widget. Cleanapp starts and asks you what you want to do. Simple!

Ooooh. To versiontracker i do go. ( Thanks Graham! )

 

ps. Appzapper too, is wunnerful!

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I only tried AppZapper (trial version) for a brief period but I settled on CleanApp which I purchased and I'm quite happy with it so far. You just have to be careful and actually read or take a look at the files and folders that it's recommending for deletion. I've had one incidence where it's tried to delete the wrong folder for an app (in comparison to tens of successful and accurate app removals). Download trials for both and see which you one you prefer.

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Good to hear Firas!

 

I've personally really appreciated appzappers' wizard menu, which it scans your entire hard drive and lists system pref panes, apps and more that have been installed... pretty neat!

 

I'll still need to check out clean app, although I think I'm going to stick with appzapper!

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Since this thread seems to have come alive again I want to add appdelete to the list. Works just like Appzapper but the interface is a little less flashy and it's free. It does not show you what it is going to delete but it does have a useful undo and it moves into the trash in a nice neat folder so you can easily see what it just deleted and undo if necessary. http://reggie.ashworth.googlepages.com/appdelete

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Then I would like to add this "application": common sense and basic knowledge of OS X. Most files go in predictable places:

  • the application's own folder
  • a subfolder (called after the app or the creator of the app) of the Application Support folder in both /Library/ and ~/Library/
  • a .plist file or a subfolder containing .plist files in the Preferences folder in ~/Library/
  • a .prefPane file in the PreferencePanes folder in both /Library/ and ~/Library/

Often, I do a search for the application's name and a search for the manufacturer's name to find all these files (and more). The next time I clean the user caches, I remove these as well. To find hidden files and folders, I use Tinkertool.

 

Perhaps this is not so intuitive as the mentioned apps, but you learn a lot about how OS X works internally, which is good to develop the Mac geek inside yourself.

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