How to Completely Uninstall iTunes (Mac)

Posted May 30, 2009 at 10:57pm by iClarified | Please help us and submit a translation by clicking here | 200784 views

These are instructions on how to do a clean and complete uninstall of iTunes from Mac OS X. This will remove all traces of iTunes from your computer.

Make sure you have quit iTunes before beginning this tutorial.

Step One
Click to launch a new Finder window from your Dock.


Step Two
Select Applications from the list of PLACES on the left side of your Finder window. Locate the iTunes application icon then drag it into the Trash Bin on your dock.


Step Three
With the Finder window selected choose Utilities from the Go menu.


Step Four
Double click to launch Activity Monitor from the Utilities folder.


Step Five
In the process list locate and select iTunes Helper.


Click the Quit Process button.


When asked if you really want to quit the process, click the Quit button.


Step Six
Select System Preferences from the Apple menu at the top left of the screen.


Step Seven
Select Accounts from the System Preferences window.


Step Eight
Select the Login Items tab from the Accounts preference window


Step Nine
Select the iTunesHelper entry then click the "-" button to remove it from the list




Step Ten
Select Restart from the Apple menu at the top left of your screen to reboot your computer.


Step Eleven
Once your computer has restarted hold down the Control key and click the Trash icon in the dock. Select Empty Trash from the popup menu that appears.



If asked whether you want to remove the items in the Trash permanently, click the OK button.


Step Twelve
Click to launch a new Finder window from the dock.


Select Go to Folder... from the Go menu at the top of the screen.


Type in ~/Library/ and click the Go button.


Locate the iTunes folder and then drag it to the Trash.


Step Thirteen
Select Go to Folder... from the Go menu at the top of the screen.


Type in ~/Library/Preferences/ and click the Go button.


Locate the preference files that have names beginning with com.apple.iTunes and drag them to the Trash. The file names should be com.apple.iTunes.eq.plist, com.apple.iTunes.plist, and com.apple.iTunesHelper.plist.


Step Fourteen
Select Go to Folder... from the Go menu at the top of the screen.


Type in /Library/ and click the Go button.


Locate the iTunes folder and then drag it to the Trash.


Step Fifteen
Select Go to Folder... from the Go menu at the top of the screen.


Type in ~/Library/Preferences/ByHost/ and click the Go button.


Locate the preference files that have names beginning with com.apple.iTunes and drag them to the Trash.


Step Sixteen
Hold down the Control key and click the Trash icon in the dock. Select Empty Trash from the popup menu that appears.



If asked whether you want to remove the items in the Trash permanently, click the OK button.

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Paul - February 17, 2014 at 9:08pm
This doesn't work
Mirek666 - November 11, 2013 at 4:02pm
I can do only Step One. When trying to complete Step Two, I get the following message: "iTunes" can't be modified or deleted because it's required by OS X. Any idea what to do?
PJ - October 4, 2013 at 9:25pm
If I do all this, does that mean I've lost forever EVERYTHING that I've put in iTunes? all my music and videos that are in there? There is no available backup for iTunes music and videos?
Vincka - October 17, 2013 at 1:05pm
no, PJ, if you have a time machine doing your backups you can open a previous library. one that was saved before iTunes 11 was installed. but read the instructions on the second link (see Albe Sure's comment) and that will tell you how to save your library if you need to.
Topcat - February 19, 2013 at 11:34am
I complete steps 1 thru 100, twice, uploaded downloaded, checked my TCP/IP connection. This phase in my Apple experience is like trying to delete that one file in windows that just wont go away. Itunes still WILL NOT recognize my iphone Ipod Ipad or Itouch. They all work on my wife's Mac and Windows XP so its not the cable. On the Macbrook Pro they DO SHOW UP on Finder and I am able to use the iPods as a harddrive so its not the USB port. Has anyone figured out how to fix this problem?
Vincka - February 17, 2013 at 8:40am
I did all this. A couple of times. But still when I launch iTunes i get the message: 'the file "itunes Library.itl" cannot be read becasue it was created by a newer version of itunes. Would you like to download iTunes now?' I don't know, what am I sposed to do? Delete the library? How do I do that? Does my music then have to be reinstalled? I have a lot of podcasts I want to keep. Or do I go back in my time machine to a previous version of the library?
vincka - February 20, 2013 at 12:08am
I fixed my own problem, in case anyone is interested. I deleted the new .itl file, and then restored the iTunes library from the time machine, from before the installation of iTunes 11. One of my problems, which sounds like it might be the same as yours, Rakshi? is that I wasn't actually downloading the old version of iTunes, but was restoring it from the Time Machine. When I actually followed the link listed in the instructions, above, and downloaded and re-installed iTunes 7 the only problem left was the .itl file. Maybe this helps?
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