Take the 2-minute tour ×
Ask Different is a question and answer site for power users of Apple hardware and software. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I've got 2 applications that I installed via the Mac App Store that are still in the "waiting" mode. How do I get these applications to finish installing? Or how do I remove them and try again?

By "waiting" mode I mean they are showing a download progress bar and have the word "waiting" overlaid their icons inside of the launchpad app. (I would take a picture but it doesn't seem to let me while showing the launchpad)

share|improve this question
Try the iTunes sync. –  user479 Jun 21 '12 at 21:45
iTunes says "All purchases have been downloaded for this account". The icons are still in the "waiting" mode in Launchpad. And I still cannot use them. (Ibooks Author & ClamXAv) BTW, this was the first time I launched iTunes on this computer. I normally use my desktop for syncing the iPhone. It didn't even have my Apple ID in it. I had to put it in for the first time. –  Jason Jun 21 '12 at 22:15
I just had this problem with the Yosemite beta. Rebooting seems to have restored functionality. –  Jay Imerman Aug 24 '14 at 12:34

10 Answers 10

I had a problem with not being able to stop an old OS from downloading. In order to delete it and stop the download, once opening launchpad, I held down the 'option' on my keyboard which caused the apps to wiggle just like on the iphone. I could then click the 'x' and delete them/stop the download.

share|improve this answer
+1 - My download for xcode was in waiting mode for days, first I was afraid of confirming the delete message after clicking the 'x' in a sense it would delete my xcode, but it didn't. It just stopped it from progress mode. –  Adil Soomro Feb 10 at 14:53

Thanks to Jason's response since it got me on the right track. The icon of the installing icon in LaunchPad would not, however, respond to double clicking. But when I selected and held the icon (as in 3 fingers on the trackpad) until all the icons started to "wiggle", then I could click on the "X" on the icon which halted the update.

The offending app was "XCode" and there is another topic on this site which refers to the problem with trying to update XCode via the App Store.

share|improve this answer

The actual downloads are done by a process called storeagent, which sometimes get stuck. Exit App Store, kill storeagent (e.g. in Activity Monitor), restart App Store (which will revive store agent) and go back to the Purchases tab where you click on the app to restart it.

share|improve this answer
I didn't see a storeagent but I did kill a few outer store processes (eg storedownload) which worked to reset things. –  nickv2002 Feb 2 at 20:55

Do not delete or remove any downloaded part or file. Just do the following and it will resume the download.

In the Activity Monitor, for example, kill the storeagent process. Then restart App Store and click resume. That's it.

share|improve this answer

Here's what worked for me:

  1. Open the launchpad
  2. Hold down on App that is stuck in "Waiting.." mode until it displays an 'X' in the upper left corner
  3. Press Enter and it should finish downloading or exit the infinite loop it's stuck in

Again, this is what worked for me, may not work for everyone but I thought I'd post it.

share|improve this answer
thanks, it worked :-) –  Mandeep Pasbola Feb 3 at 6:14
up vote 0 down vote accepted

With the latest update to Mountain Lion I am now able to fix the issue with ease. Now you can double-click a partially downloaded program to throw away all the currently downloaded parts and start over. This only starts working once the computer thinks it has stopped. I'm guessing there is some hidden timeout value that needs to be exceeded to enable this feature.

In one case (ClamXav) I had to reboot to get Mountain Lion to recognize that it wasn't downloading any longer. Double-click still worked to restart the download.

share|improve this answer
Accepting this one since it also worked for @David Brick –  Jason Jan 30 '13 at 21:49

Maybe another apple ID logged in to the appstore - launchpad/appstore is still trying to update software that isn't linked to your apple ID. Log in using the original ID and complete or cancel the downloads, then log in with your own ID again.

share|improve this answer

I just figured it out, I literally just now had the problem. If it's an application, you have to delete it through launchpad (press option on your keyboard while in launchpad, and then click the little 'X' by it to delete it) and then go into your app store and go to purchases and click install, which should now be available to be clicked.

share|improve this answer

I had the same problem so I clicked the option key which allowed me to cancel the app,I then closed the app store, reopened it and clicked download and aster returning to waiting... for a few seconds it started to download again.

share|improve this answer

Just click and hold the icon. you can remove it by clicking close(x) button on the icon.

share|improve this answer
Hello, and welcome to Ask Different! When answering, please take a minute to read not only the question, but also the attached comment thread – this will protect you from making irrelevant suggestions, as in this case, where OP states in the comments he cannot delete the apps via their close button. –  kopischke Oct 28 '12 at 22:15

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.