Uninstall apps and find app leftovers with this free Mac utility
Dragging apps to the Trash on the Apple Mac leaves many files behind and they use disk space and might even cause problems. App Cleaner & Uninstaller cleans and uninstalls apps more thoroughly.
This is a free/cheap app from the Mac App Store and it performs several functions, all related to removing apps that you no longer need on your Mac. It finds the files associated with an app you want to remove and deletes them.
It is a myth that simply dragging an app from the Applications folder to the Trash removes it completely. There may be files, settings and services elsewhere on the disk and these are not removed by dragging to the Trash.
Some apps come with uninstaller utilities, but sometimes they are hard to find. Here are some examples of uninstallers within apps and they should be used whenever possible.
For apps that do not have their own uninstaller, a third party utility like App Cleaner & Uninstaller should be used. (Also see the similarly named AppCleaner.)
Give permission, find more files
When it is installed, it asks for permission to access your home folder and the Applications folder.
You should also go to the Preferences and give it access to the system folders too. This enables it to find more files and services associated with apps.
There are three tabs and the first one is Applications. Selecting it lists all the apps that are installed.
Selecting an app lists all the files and this includes files outside of the applications folder. It finds plist files and receipts, saved application states, helper tools, caches and more. It does quite a thorough job of finding all the files.
Upgrade to the Pro version for £3.99 and it can uninstall everything. In the free version uninstalling an app is a two-step process and you can only select and remove the associated files. Afterwards you must open Finder and manually click and drag the app to the Trash.
View and remove extensions
Extensions consists of launch agents, login items, installation files, screensavers and iOS installations. You can view them and enable or disable items. Most of the features here are only for Pro users.
You will probably be surprised by the number of items in this section and they all add to the workload on the Mac, slowing it down. The more you can disable or remove, the better the Mac will run.
If you really don’t want the Pro version, the file locations are displayed and you could open Finder and manually remove the items.
Remove left-over files
All the apps you uninstalled before using a utility like App Cleaner & Uninstaller will have left behind files and folders. The Remains tab lists them, and it works in the free version of the app.
You can browse the list of uninstalled apps and select them to see a list of the files left behind. These can be selected and then removed.
App Cleaner & Uninstaller has some excellent features for uninstalling apps and cleaning up the files they leave behind. There is enough in the free version of the app to make it worthwhile installing, but to use all the features you need the Pro version.
App: App Cleaner & Uninstaller
Price: Free / UK £4.99, US $3.99
Website: nektony.com (https://nektony.com)
Verdict: A useful free tool that’s even more useful when you unlock the Pro features.
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