Although Apple makes an effort to ensure that all of its pre-installed Mac apps are great, not every app is going to be your go-to utility on macOS. Take iMovie, Photos, or GarageBand as examples: the first is nice, easy-to-use software for editing videos; the second will help you manage photos; and GarageBand is a fantastic app for recording music.
Still, if you didn’t purchase your Mac for creating music or editing movies (or perhaps you prefer Final Cut Pro for that purpose), then chances are these great apps will just sit there on the computer untouched, and so it only makes sense to remove them.
There is a good reason for not keeping these apps, too, because if you have limited storage – let's say a 128GB flash drive – then uninstalling GarageBand will save you quite a lot of space, up to 1GB. Now, just imagine how many Photoshop files you could store in that free disk space!
Of course, you won't feel such a burden if your Mac comes with 1TB or more of storage, but add in iMovie and Photos to the pot and you'll find yourself freeing up to 5GB of space just by removing the pre-installed software.
There are two ways to remove any pre-installed app.
Uninstall GarageBand Manually
One of the features that makes macOS so user friendly is the ease of installing and removing apps. There are some gigantic applications that still require users to go through an installation process similar to the ones we see on PC, but that's not something Mac users will experience frequently. To uninstall GarageBand, follow the steps below:
- Launch Finder and click on the Applications folder.
- Select GarageBand and drag the item to the Trash, or press Command + Delete to send it to Trash.
- Enter the admin password if prompted to confirm the removal.
- Right-click on the Trash can and select “Empty Trash”.
The above steps should be enough to clear the way for other (more important) files, but versions prior to (OS X) macOS 10.9 Mavericks may require additional steps to get rid of any associated files…
- Launch Finder and select “Go to Folder” from the Go menu, or press the Command + Shift + G keys and type the following path in the prompt:
- Select and delete all files in that directory.
- Once again, empty the trash.
Uninstall GarageBand with Mac Optimization Software
Uninstallers such as AppCleaner and AppZapper are usually among the favorite app removal utilities. Unfortunately, their permissions seem to be limited to third party applications, which makes them useless for removing pre-installed apps under macOS Sierra and High Sierra. It is possible that earlier versions of macOS are more open with these apps, but in our testing AppCleaner didn't have enough permissions to remove GarageBand.
Mac optimizations apps such as CleanMyMac include an uninstaller feature, which fortunately does allow users to easily remove any unwanted apps, along with any associated files. To remove GarageBand and free up roughly 700MB of space (as seen in our testing, but it may differ on your machine) you should do the following:
- Launch CleanMyMac (or any other Mac optimization app).
- Click on the Uninstaller utility.
- Select GarageBand from the listed apps. This will automatically select binaries, preferences and supporting files.
- Click on the “Uninstall” button.
Let the utility run its course and in just a few seconds your Mac will have more free space than before.
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