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Removing old Software

I was just checking to see what people are using for removing old versions of software. I basically inherited a bunch of systems and some have really old versions of the software installed. I could write a script for this for each application, but that would get tedious. Any other suggestions?

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SOLVED Posted: by Chris_Hafner

Boy, that really depends on a bit. First, I try to have an upgrade path for each application. Sometimes, you can just drop another app over the top (i.e. Firefox, Google Chrome, etc). Packaging and installing those apps simply replace the older version. If you're talking about MS Office then you'll want to have an uninstall process. it's just that each install and hence, uninstall is a bit different. Ilve seen folks here write a single "big" script to bring all of the supported apps up to date, using a variety of methods. I believe some of them were essentially creating a list of "current" apps in a script and letting it find and replace outdated versions by calling policies dynamically.

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SOLVED Posted: by Chris_Hafner

P.S. we all uninstall LOTS of software. It shouldn't be 'that' tedious. We just had our mass off boarding of BYOD students yesterday and that process simply removes all of our institutionally licensed software, removed management, promotes their user to admin etc... the process took me about a month to perfect... years ago. I just keep updating and changing with the times ever since. Sometimes I script an uninstall. Sometimes I borrow one from JAMFnation and other times I'm simply telling the policy to uninstall something that I packaged with Composer.

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SOLVED Posted: by robmorton

Yeah, the items I am looking for are the 50 different places Adobe Acrobat/Reader has been put throughout the upgrades as well as hunting down the people that have old versions of Firefox, Chrome, etc. sitting on their desktop or in a custom applications folder somewhere.

Basically, it was disappointing when I looked at the versions of Acrobat that are installed and version 10 is still fairly high counts and even version 7 is still around.

Thanks for the advice, looks like I will be scripting.

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SOLVED Posted: by Chris_Hafner

Yuck... well, by the sounds of it, scripting may simply be easier. At least until you get a good upgrade path under control.

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SOLVED Posted: by robmorton

Yeah, I was hopeful that I would find a means to delete in mass. Basically Jamf has the inventory and could have the path to every .app file, just let me filter out the good and delete the bad. I didn't think Jamf had that, but it was worth a shot.

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SOLVED Posted: by Chris_Hafner

You know... that would be a great Feature Request under the "patch management" heading.

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SOLVED Posted: by mschroder

In fact a large fraction of our policies are for app removal. We have a few that use a generic script (just remove /Applications/theApp), and quite a few that are specific.

For Adobe we use the uninstaller if it still is around, otherwise I remove the standard folders used by these apps, again first checking whether they exist. Even the uninstaller leaves some things around, so if these are present I remove them manually.

When it is not clear whether files might be used by other products or versions (often the case in /Library/Application Support) I do not touch them.

Users have moved the app or installed in a custom app folder? Sorry for them, they are on their own now. I will not try to search every corner of the users Mac just to see where they might have put stuff. But if I added stuff myself during re-packaging I try to clean that up on uninstall.

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SOLVED Posted: by dsweigart

I too have gone with the generic script of just removing the application. This will be the first summer that I got pretty in-depth with this because I use to create "master images" and now am just updating. Here is an example of a script that I used.

rm -rf /Applications/SketchUp\ 2017

and that is placed in a policy under the Files and Processes > Execute Command.

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