MacScan Uninstall

My gripe for the day is software where the authors provide no information on how to uninstall it. Sure, some Mac users subscribe to the theory that all you need to is drag the application ‘icon’ to the Trash Bin and that’s it, but I’m not one of them. I soon discovered that Mac applications not only have an install folder but tend to create ‘plist’ entries as well, and some go further than that.

MacScanHaving read a recent article at MacWorld about a new Mac-specific trojan, I thought, what harm can it do just to download MacScan and give it a go? I duly did and I proceeded with the demo, and sure enough it didn’t find any spyware or other nasties on my Mac Pro. So was I over-reacting to this trojan scare? Probably, and that’s why I decided I’d uninstall MacScan but help in knowing exactly how to remove it seemed hard to come by.

Firstly, there’s nothing in the documentation that comes with the application. There’s a ReadMe file and a short manual, but neither make mention of how to uninstall it. So I headed off to the MacScan website and tried the Support link. Searching for ‘uninstall’ and variations of it, revealed nothing. So I then read though each of the MacScan Support Knowledgebase topics, but found nothing that would help a user remove the product. In frustration I turned to my trusty AppZapper to see what it would make of MacScan. It suggested that the following should be deleted:

  • (app) /Applications/MacScan 2/
  • (pref) ~/Library/Preferences/com.securemac.plist
  • (pref) ~/Library/Preferences/MacScan Statistics.plist
  • (receipt) /Library/Receipts/MacScan Installer.pkg
  • (installer) ~/Downloads/MacScan Trial
  • (folder) /Applications/MacScan 2

The list looked reasonable, so I let AppZapper do its thing and just hope that it’s cleared out everything and that I haven’t got bits of MacScan left behind anywhere. Fortunately I hadn’t set up the MacScan scheduler otherwise I suspect there may have been more to remove.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying that MacScan is a bad product – it’s just that I didn’t really think I had a use for it and couldn’t justify the $29.99 price tag. What would be nice though would be if products like this included clear instructions for how to uninstall it, because for anyone who doesn’t have something like AppZapper installed, finding all the various bits to remove may not be so easy.

Ironic in a way that a piece of software that helps you uninstall other undesireable programs, doesn’t actually help you uninstall itself.


5 Responses

  1. Just came across your blog with a search on uninstall MacScan. I agree with you. This thing is a waste of time

  2. I found the same probelm that i could find no uninstaller

    In these cases I usually use spotlight to track down the bits and delete them!!!

  3. I dont if their website just got update or what but they do tell u to just drag the software to the trash

    but you ya its really useless to develop an antispyware for mac at the moment and hopefully always as long as mac keeps a low profile.

  4. Any update on this? MacScan now suddenly has appeared as a pop up on my screen and I can’t seem to get ride of it. It won’t close and I can’t trash it! Looks like they’ve gone from bad to worse – argh!

  5. I would suggest having a look in your ~\Library\Application Support\ folder and see if there’s anything relating to MacScan in there. Also check your ‘Login Items’ for your user account to see if there’s a MacScan task being launched at startup. If MacScan hs been more ‘subtle’ there may be a scheduled task set to run that doesn’t show up under Login Items. See if you can download a copy of Lingon (it’s free). Run that and it’ll tell you what tasks are scheduled to run on your Mac and it may help to reveal what’s causing the pop-up. When you find it, remove the scheduled task and whatever ‘helper’ app it’s pointing to that MacScan has left behind.

    Good luck.

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