So has anyone noticed Chrome (around version 39?) keeps creating an Application folder in their Home folder?

The only way I've verified that it is Chrome is that after a fresh boot, it was the only app I ran and then the Application folder was created. I still may be wrong that it is indeed Chrome.

Haven't been able to find any documentation on this and how to disable it. Or I may just be searching with incorrect keywords.

So how does one disable this behaviour?

  • It appears that Chrome is the one that creates it, but no way to disable it as far as I know. As others have stated, there is no harm to it and other applications may also create it.
    – tubedogg
    Apr 26 '15 at 16:12
  • Even if I delete ~/Applications, Chrome recreates the folder upon every launch.
    – odysseus
    Aug 4 '15 at 12:26

Google Chrome has a feature called App Launcher. If you install any apps from that part of the store the browser will put shims for the apps in ~/Applications (it also puts an identical copy in ~/Library/Application Support/Google/Chrome/Default/Web Applications/LONG_RANDOM_IDENTIFIER/). If it is doing this then you should have a folder within ~/Applications called "Chrome Apps". You can see the Chrome developers making the decision to use the ~/Applications folder here. If you have installed any Chrome Apps, just uninstall them and delete the "Chrome Apps" folder and then Chrome shouldn't recreate the folder.

If you are using Chrome Canary, by default it installs shims for Gmail, Google Drive, Google Search and YouTube. But if you delete the "Chrome Canary Apps" folder it doesn't appear to recreate it.

There are other applications that install to that folder though. On my own machine Steam has installed shims for games and GitHub has chosen to install there app there instead of /Applications for some reason (I may have been prompted, I don't recall).

Like Tetsujin said though, having an Applications folder within your own user account isn't really anything to worry about.

  • Thanks for a more detailed info. Haven't installed any Chrome Apps at all and the folder is empty. I know it isn't an issue having it there but would rather not have it automatically created every time. I just find it an odd behaviour. Also understand it's how Steam installs app launchers there but I do not have Steam.
    – user123449
    Apr 26 '15 at 14:42
  • 1
    "Odd behavior" is clearly understated. Having my own "Apps" folder, that's a pleasure to fight against the other one in the Terminal completion. Jun 5 '15 at 9:34

I stumbled across this post while trying to get rid of what I see as annoying Chrome behavior. After fighting things for a while and trying different settings to prevent Chrome from adding its folder to my user folder, I decided to just hide it. It's a hack-y work-around, but doesn't offend my sensibilities. To do so, use the following command from the terminal:

chflags hidden ~/Applications/

Again, this just hides the folder so you don't see it. It's still there and still visible in the terminal.

Hope this helps a little :)


I have had the same issue and did not want to remove my Chrome apps. Even though I found this to be very annoying when trying to access my Applications folder in terminal.

I have a simple fix though which is to just use a forward slash before Applications in terminal (e.g. cd /Applications). This then takes you to the correct folder.


There's nothing wrong with having an Applications folder in your Home folder - that's where applications specific to that user live.

It may be empty if it was created but either unpopulated or the app later deleted.

The test to see if it will be recreated by the OS itself would be reboot, delete it, reboot.

Chrome is not the only App to do this. Any app with different license requirements per user will do it by default, so will any app that allows each user the choice of customised installs.

Examples include:-
Steam [per user license]
Parallels [per user options]

Related question - In OS X, is it better to put apps in /Applications or in ~/Applications?

  • 7
    There's everything wrong with an app that creates a folder in your Home folder without asking for permission, while at the same time there are specific system folders for doing the same damn thing. Jun 5 '15 at 9:38
  • Well, not really - it makes far more sense to put a single user's stuff in that user's ~/Applications than force all users to share the same structure. That's what the ~/Applications folder was intended for. By definition, you already gave it permission.
    – Tetsujin
    Jul 2 '17 at 14:36

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