Is it normal to have all this stuff in my path environment?


It seems I have included the same path many times. I have installed and uninstalled Python 3.4 and Python 3.4.1 a few times because I am still having problems in making the IDLE work correctly due to Tcl/Tk libraries compatibility and stability problems with Mac OS X. Is this maybe the reason of having apparently the same path repeated?

  • How do you uninstall python? (also what stability issues worth OSX - Python install will not affect OSX stability)
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Sep 20, 2014 at 14:05
  • Fur python 3 and tcl see python.org/download/mac/tcltk
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Sep 20, 2014 at 20:00
  • For first comment - yo need to start a new terminal to see the changes - for second one I have no idea what you are saying I suspect you need to read a bash tutorial
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Sep 20, 2014 at 22:33

4 Answers 4


The issue is how you have uninstalled python. Deleting the app does remove the code but does not affect anything you have changed elsewhere will not have been undone. In this case the changes to the path have not been undone and as the installer is a simple one it keeps adding the new bit of the path to the existing path.

To fix the path you need to find the file where the PATH environment variable is altered. If you are using the bash shell (the default in recent OSX) then. . ideally it should be ~/.bashrc but probably ~/.profile or ~/.bash_profile. See other questions or manuals on what startup file bash uses) Then edit this file so that you have only one Python in it, the lines changing PATH will begin export PATH=

In general things are uninstallable if only you know exactly what they changed in install and what they write to at run time. There is no generic way to do this. The best apps have uninstallers which will do the best. You can stop the app running by deleting the .app bundle and most configuration takes up little disk space so the cost of leaving it is not high. Also most .apps do not need edits in bash files so are more self contained.


I always recommend using Homebrew: brew.sh

Installing, uninstalling, updating etc. of Python and many other useful apps is a breeze if you are a bit familiar with terminal. Even for complete n00b following the guides should not be a problem.

  • That might be true although I would suggest macports but either one does not answer his current problem which is sorting out his path - and I would suggest the OP is not familiar with Terminal
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Sep 20, 2014 at 22:35

I think that I have determined the problem that this person is having. They might be using a different kind of shell, like .tschrc. They should look at their startup files, and likely the now unused framework has been added to the path there.


Reading the other's answers and comments, Uninstalling seems the idea.

However just dragging into the bin isn't enough, so you'll need to use an app that'll search the system for similar files - AppCleaner.

I have used AppCleaner several times and can commend to it. It's not for deleting apps, but can delete settings. widgets, and related files if you drag and drop into it. Just be sure you see what files you are deleting because I often accidentally delete the app installer/zip from my Downloads folder when I need to reinstall it.

So my opinion is to use a system scanner that'll look for related files and folders and this should prevent from duplicate paths, files or folders being made.

Just be sure to see WHAT you are deleting

  • 1
    Dpoes AppCleaner chnage the path in .bashrc ?
    – mmmmmm
    Commented Feb 8, 2015 at 10:52
  • Hm... I'm not sure, but I think AppCleaner looks for similar names, not the contents itself. But I'm not sure
    – MrU
    Commented Feb 8, 2015 at 21:52

You must log in to answer this question.