So you have apps on your Mac “taking up space”. You just aren’t using them, or if you are like me, you can’t remember why you installed them in the first place. OS X makes uninstalling easy, you just drag the icon of your unwanted orphan from the Applications folder to the “Trash basket” on your desktop. All done – mission accomplished, or is it? Sometimes when diagnosing a problem with an application, it is sometimes faster just to delete the offending program, and simply reinstall it. In doing this, I have often found that when opening the freshly reinstalled program, it has the same configuration settings as it did in its previous incarnation. The OS X uninstaller sometimes misses things like plists (property lists), scripts, and other portions of programs. Curses, now you have to find the “left-overs” and then remove them manually, or you can use the FREE program, AppCleaner.
AppCleaner for the Mac uninstalls widgets, plug-ins, and other program “bits and pieces”. Also, AppCleaner has a new SmartDelete feature, thus, it can notice new apps in the trash (providing AppCleaner is open, and with apps you haven’t thrown away yet) and offer to delete their leftover files as well.
Though not as simple as the native uninstall process in OS X, it is still pretty simple:
Open AppCleaner, and you will be presented with this window:
Just as in OS X, but instead of dragging the icon of your unwanted program to “Trash”, drag the icon inside the AppCleaner window. After doing this, AppCleaner begins working, and updates its original window:
AppCleaner now displays all the components it is going to uninstall, and where they are located. Note that in this example, it even found the “zip” file from the original download. Should you wish to keep any of the components, just uncheck that particular item. Once you are happy with your choices, click the Delete button.
AppCleaner: Simple, functional, and FREE. A hard combination to beat. You can download it here.