Submit Hint Search The Forums LinksStatsPollsHeadlinesRSS
14,000 hints and counting!

Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer Install
If you are trying to uninstall an application that cannot be uninstalled by dropping it to the trash, and it was installed using Apple's Installer, you might try the following:
  1. Double-click the installer file to begin a new installation.
  2. Pick File » Show Files from the menu.
  3. Check out the list of files it will install, and then delete them in the Finder.
[robg adds: I've used this technique before and it works quite well for finding all the bits of a more-complex installation.]
    •    
  • Currently 2.80 / 5
  You rated: 1 / 5 (10 votes cast)
 
[30,813 views]  

Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer | 12 comments | Create New Account
Click here to return to the 'Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer' hint
The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer
Authored by: brett_x on Dec 21, '07 08:38:21AM

It should probably be noted that you should NEVER use this tip for system updates unless you want to render your OS useless.
Of course, in general, you should always be careful deleting files you don't know much about. They may be there for other purposes for the files. Sometimes installers update files, so removing them will cause unintended consequences.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer
Authored by: alblue on Dec 21, '07 08:55:49AM

Also you can use 'lsbom' in the terminal.

/Library/Receipts shows what's been installed; if you install Foo.pkg, you'll find something like /Library/Receipts/Foo.pkg/Contents/Archive.bom; to find out what it contains, do lsbom /Library/Receipts/Foo.pkg/Contents/Archive.bom.

Alex



[ Reply to This | # ]
Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer
Authored by: rhowell on Dec 21, '07 09:36:36AM

I often save this bill of materials to a text file (copy-and-paste) to assist in future removal.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer
Authored by: asmeurer on Dec 21, '07 10:08:17AM

I don't remember, but doesn't Pacifist do uninstalls? I know it at least will show installed files in a clean interface.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer
Authored by: Jaharmi on Dec 21, '07 10:14:09AM

The BOM won't indicate what files or folders were added, created, moved, or deleted by scripts. It also won't show what else has been done through scripts in the package — for example, I've seen installers which create users and groups.

The BOM will only list what files and folders were directly bundled together into the package. Therefore, using this tip, you can only see what was intended to be installed as part of the package, minus whatever actions were taken by any of the scripts in that package.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer
Authored by: eagle on Dec 21, '07 10:14:55AM

This is my biggest complaint about the OS X installer.app. The NeXT version had an uninstall function, but the OS X version does not.

As with other commenters, I use lsbom on the archive in the receipt.



[ Reply to This | # ]
FTFU
Authored by: ScooterComputer on Dec 21, '07 10:48:58AM

The Installer technology in Mac OS X is outdated and unacceptable in 2007. Not having an Uninstall feature is but one of its faults.

How about a Pre/Post script sandboxing API? There is simply NO reason that an installer script should have the full control over a system that a user holds, not by default.

How about a System-maintained Install history? TimeMachine is great, but a rather "dumb" technology. Context is key!

Unfortunately, Apple doesn't care about fixing this. Complaints about the Installer.app and its lack of feature-set have existed since 10.0, with no substantial changes. The fact that Windows provides, at least rudimentarly, a more robust solution is sad. Even Apple's pre-OS X installer tech was more full-featured.



[ Reply to This | # ]
FTFU
Authored by: Peganthyrus on Dec 21, '07 11:03:39PM

IMHO the whole idea of having to "install" a program before I can use it feels impossibly quaint, after so many well-behaved apps that just let me drag a single app icon, or maybe a directory, out of the .dmg!

I groan every time a program requires me to run an installer, and if I don't feel it has good reason to need this, I'm as likely as not to just toss the installer unused. If you're not doing something really low-level, then you shouldn't be giving me an installer in the first place.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer
Authored by: Fairly on Dec 21, '07 02:58:34PM

This shows you what file are "installed". It doesn't show you what files are created. By the application that is. And bets are even further off if there's any malfeasance involved. And don't forget it doesn't have to be malice - it can just be stupidity. This is an incomplete band-aid remedy for a complex issue.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Desinstaller3 does this
Authored by: billclinton on Dec 21, '07 06:43:30PM

Desinstaller3 is what you want to do this task.



[ Reply to This | # ]
Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer
Authored by: semaja2 on Dec 22, '07 05:02:39PM

Apples new guidelines for Leopard is to deploy all applications via a Apple Installer, which has upset many devs just as much as users.

In my applications i deploy them just as a simple zipped up application, which if not placed in the Applications folder will ask a 1 off question if you want to copy it to the Applications folder.

DMGs are also crap for deployment because it wastes bandwidth and devs time for nothing, because most apps are a single file and it could of just been in a nice archive



[ Reply to This | # ]
Uninstall programs installed with the Apple Installer
Authored by: clusty on Jan 09, '11 06:23:25PM

this leaves the empty recipe, thus every time you see a console that is running some variant of pkg-util, it will nag you (like uninstalling xcode).

The only way i found to uninstall everything was: http://www.hexorcist.com/wordpress/2010/12/26/uninstalling-osx-pkg-files/



[ Reply to This | # ]