Some users may prefer to use a VPN on their Macs. Using a VPN may enhance your online privacy by hiding your IP address and encrypting your internet connection. However, VPNs may also cause issues. They can interfere with other services that require network connections. Thus, some of our articles suggest removing any VPNs from your Mac to fix network problems. This article explains how you can completely uninstall a VPN, including its configurations, from your Mac.
Why would you want to delete a VPN?
VPNs may introduce certain issues or challenges. There could be a lot of reasons why you would want to delete it:
- A VPN may affect another service’s performance, such as Messages, Wi-Fi or FaceTime.
- It May slow down Wi-Fi.
- Many VPNs are not free and come with a subscription fee.
- If you are a part of an iCloud+ subscription, you may be using Private Relay instead of a VPN.
- You may want to delete it to free up more storage.
- You may think you no longer need it, and your Mac’s built-in security is all you need. Your Mac is pretty secure without a VPN.
The steps to delete VPN on your Mac
There are two steps. The first step is to remove the app from your Mac, and the second step is to remove its configuration files.
Step 1: Delete the App
There are two ways for a VPN app to be downloaded to your Mac. You can get it from the Mac app store or from the developer’s website.
If the VPN app was downloaded from the App Store:
- Open Launchpad. You can click its icon in the Dock to open it.
- Find the VPN in Launchpad. You can use the search field to find it if you would like.
- Click and hold the VPN app until it starts to jiggle.
- Click the (x) delete button on the icon.
If the VPN app was downloaded from the Internet:
You can use Finder to delete it. Here is how:
- Open Finder on your Mac. You can click its icon in the Dock to open it.
- In Finder, find the VPN app. It is probably inside the Applications folder. Open Applications and locate it.
- Then, delete it by using one of these methods:
- Drag and drop it to the Trash bin.
- Right-click the app and then select Move to Trash.
- Select the app and then press Command–Delete.
Step 2: Delete the configuration files
After deleting the app, it is important to remove the VPN configurations from your Mac. Because if you do not, the anticipated benefit of removing the VPN may not occur. For example, if you want to delete a VPN because you could not download the full version of your photos from iCloud, you may still experience the problem even after deleting the VPN unless you also delete the configuration files. Here is how:
- On your Mac, go to the Apple menu and select System Settings.
- From the left sidebar, select Network and then VPN.
- Click the info (i) button next to the VPN.
- Then click Remove Configuration. A popup will appear, asking if you really want to remove it. Click Remove again.
Now you have deleted the VPN. Restart your Mac to ensure that your changes take effect, and then you are done.