How to uninstall Safari on macOS

Clean up Safari browser the right way 

If you’ve ever dragged an application to the Trash in order to remove it from your Mac, you’ve been doing it wrong. Why is that? Well, the thing is that apps are more than just their application icon. When you drag an app to the Trash, you leave behind tons of leftover files, which end up wasting space on your Mac. This goes for Safari application as well. So, how are you supposed to completely remove Safari from your Mac? 
By uninstalling it, of course!

for OS X El Capitan and macOS Sierra

So, how to uninstall Safari on Mac?

Safari is a system app, which gives it a privileged status compared to other browsers. On older macOS versions, it was possible to remove it for good. As for the newer systems, sorry to tell you this, but the farthest you can get is resetting Safari and clearing all the info from it.

Why Safari cannot be removed completely

You might be wondering, why so? There is a pretty logical reason for that. Since the release of El Capitan 10.11, Apple introduced System Integrity Protection. It’s a security feature that mostly has your best interests in mind: there is nothing you as a user can accidentally do to damage system files in any way. You cannot possibly delete, disable, uninstall, or corrupt anything critical in the whole OS. 

On new macOS versions, you can’t completely uninstall Safari. The binary file of the app will remain, even if you remove every associated file and history.

Still, it’s possible to deep-clean some parts of Safari with an app like CleanMyMac X. You can reset Safari browser with an uninstaller tool in CleanMyMac X. It’s a Mac cleaning app that has a reset option for apps, and it will wipe clean all your plugins, history, and cache.

Completely uninstall Safari browser on Mac OS X 10.10 or earlier

For older versions: How to uninstall Safari on OS X Yosemite and earlier

Warning: Before we begin, you should know that by removing Safari, you may also be removing critical files that are necessary for Mac system processes and apps, which rely on Safari to run correctly. By removing the Safari browser via the steps in this guide, we are in no way responsible for what happens to your Mac when Safari is removed. We understand that you want the application gone, but we must make sure to warn you that it may affect your system and other apps on your Mac negatively, and we are in no way responsible. Just a warning!

The full tutorial on how to completely uninstall Safari on OS X Yosemite, Mavericks and earlier

A quick way to completely remove Safari from OS X 10.10 

Uninstalling apps with CleanMyMac is incredibly easy. It has an Uninstaller module that gets rid of all the little leftovers that ragging an app to the Trash misses. To uninstall Safari and all of its parts with CleanMyMac X, follow these steps:

  1. Download and install CleanMyMac X (it’s free to download).
  2. Launch the app.
  3. In the top menu, choose CleanMyMac X > Preferences.
  4. Click on Ignore list, then choose Uninstaller on the left.
  5. Uncheck Ignore system applications.
  6. Go back to CleanMyMac X and open the Uninstaller tab.
  7. Find Safari on the list.
  8. Click on Complete Uninstallation at the top.
  9. Click Remove button.

And Safari is gone! CleanMyMac X has been beautifully designed to clean out applications and a whole lot more with just a few clicks. It can clean up not just applications but gigabytes of useless junk on your Mac. CleanMyMac X will save you tons of cleaning time and help you speed up your Mac. So, why wait? Download CleanMyMac X for free and get cleaning!


As mentioned, on new macOS versions, you cannot completely uninstall Safari. But you can still follow other steps to reset Safari in newer macOS versions, and we provide them further in the article.

How to uninstall Safari from OS X 10.10 and earlier (manually)

Let’s start by saying (again) that you have to find all the extra files that come with Safari. We can’t just drag Safari to the Trash for two reasons:

  1. Number one, it doesn’t get rid of all the little leftover files;
  2. Number two, “‘Safari’ can’t be modified or deleted because it’s required by OS X,” pops up when you try to delete it.
How to remove all the files for Safari manually

So, let’s put this into perspective for a second. If you were to remove all the files for Safari manually, you’d have to remove all these types of files (note: look for Safari in the name of the file):

  • Binaries, which are located in…
  • Dock Icon, which is located in…
  • Application Support Files, which are located in…
    /Users/YourName/Library/Application Support/
  • Plugins, which are located in…
    /Users/YourName/Library/Address Book Plug-Ins/
  • Caches, which are located in…
  • Library, which is located in…
  • Preferences, which are located in…
  • Saved States, which are located in…
    /Users/YourName/Library/Saved Application State/
  • Crashes, which are located in…
    /Users/YourName/Library/Application Support/CrashReporter/

So again, if you need to completely remove Safari from Mac, you need to delete all these kinds of files. Know that some files may not exist, for instance, if Safari has never crashed on you, it may have no crash files. Also, be sure to look for “Safari” in the file name in the folders mentioned above.

Please be careful when deleting system files. You never know how it will affect your Mac if you remove the wrong ones (or the right ones, for that matter!). However, you can always use an easier way to remove all these files without searching for all the specifics, and that’s by using CleanMyMac. It finds all the leftover pieces you’re likely to leave on your Mac when you delete the apps by dragging them to the Trash.

How to delete Safari data (reset Safari browser) on newer systems

Resetting Safari is deleting all of the information from the browser, leaving it pristine like the first snow. Whatever history, data, extensions, or else you had in Safari browser, after resetting, it will all be wiped out irreversibly, so think twice if you have anything important stored in there.

  1. Download and install CleanMyMac X (click here to download it).
  2. Launch the app.
  3. In the top menu, choose CleanMyMac X > Preferences.
  4. Click on the Ignore List, then choose Uninstaller on the left.
  5. Uncheck Ignore system applications.
  6. Go back to CleanMyMac and open the Uninstaller tab.
  7. Find Safari on the list.
  8. Control-click on Safari (just press Control when clicking on the icon) and choose “Select ‘Safari’ for Reset.”
  9. Click Reset button.

Resetting Safari sometimes fixes bugs and resolves conflicts with other software.

How to remove Safari data from macOS 10.15 Catalina

The previous macOS Catalina has brought major changes to the operating system we all love. With the good old iTunes app being replaced by Music, Podcasts, Apple TV, and other novelties, the release brought a lot of great enhancements to macOS. Safari has been updated, too. 

New OS requirements don’t make it possible to remove Safari on Mac with CleanMyMac X. But that doesn’t mean that you can’t optimize your Mac’s storage and remove Safari-related files. So, to remove those, open CleanMyMac X, go to the menu, and select Preferences. Here move to Ignore List and uncheck Ignore system application.

Then, you can go to CleanMyMac X’s Uninstaller module and click the down-arrow to see Safari files. Check the items to delete them from your Mac and click Reset.

How to set the default browser to other than Safari

Although you can’t completely uninstall Safari, you may safely ignore it. Just set your default browser to something different. 

Open System Preferences > General.
Look for the Default browser setting.

We hope this guide has helped you. We’re sorry if it didn’t (because you’re running macOS Catalina and just found out that you’ll have to deal with Safari on your Mac forever). Don’t forget to retrieve important info from your browser before uninstalling or resetting it, and have a nice day. Cheers.

Laptop with CleanMyMac
CleanMyMac X

Your Mac. As good as new.