I'm running macOS High Sierra and sometime ago I uninstalled Google Drive from my machine. OR so I thought. Today I see the Backup and Sync app in my Applications folder and when I try and delete it I see the following error.

I went to my Library folder and deleted the Google folder from there. I also deleted anything that sounded like Google from Library/Application Support.
However, I still get the same message when I try and move the application to Trash.
How do I get rid of this completely?

  • +1 for Tetsujin, did you check under Applications in Finder and make sure Back up and Sync does not exist there?
    – DrZoo
    Jul 3, 2018 at 19:59

5 Answers 5


Moving of the Backup and Sync from Google app to the Trash and emptying it only removes the application bundle. It doesn't uninstall the Finder Sync Extension, application script, APFS container, preferences, etc.

You'd also want to remove the following & reboot:

~/Library/Application\ Scripts/com.google.GoogleDrive.FinderSyncAPIExtension
~/Library/Group\ Containers/google_drive
  • 2
    I could locate and delete some of the above, but others did not work because the exact name had changed. In those cases I listed the root directory followed by a grep for google e.g. ls ~/Library/Preferences/com.google.GoogleDrive.plist | grep google. I then just deleted those directories or files.
    – Obromios
    Jan 26, 2022 at 7:03

From Google Support - Stop syncing Google Drive files with Backup and Sync

It doesn't specify exactly, but I'd guess you need to disable/dosconnect it first before you can uninstall it...

Disconnect your account

To stop syncing completely, you can sign out of your account.

  1. On your computer, click Backup and Sync Backup and Sync.
  2. Click More > Preferences.
  3. Click Settings.
  4. Click Disconnect account.
  5. Click Disconnect.

Pause or resume Backup and Sync

To temporarily stop syncing, you can pause the app.

  1. On your computer, click Backup and Sync Backup and Sync.
  2. Click More .
  3. Click Pause or Resume.

Uninstall Backup and Sync


After you uninstall Backup and Sync, you can still find your files at drive.google.com.

  1. Open Finder and click Applications.
  2. Drag the "Backup and Sync" app into the Trash on your dock.
  3. In the top left of your screen, click Finder > Empty Trash.
  • While you do have to disconnect before moving it to trash, simply deleting it does not fully uninstall the application. The answer below is an extension to yours. Jan 26, 2019 at 1:43

You can't put the Backup and Sync from Google app in the trash because it registers itself to startup at login. Consequently, the app is running - even though you can't Command+Tab switch to it. Neither can you Force Quit.

Open System Preferences, Users and Groups, and select the Login Items tab. Remove Backup and Sync from this list. Restart your system, then throw the app in the trash.


Open a Terminal. Enter

killall "Backup and Sync"

Once Backup and Sync is closed, delete it from your Application folder by dragging it into the Trash.

Optionally remove the GoogleDrive stuff listed in Craig Stodolenak's answer, then reboot.


macbook air 2015, high sierra

It was slowing down system, but wouldn't even 'open' when clicked to follow any suggested fixes for disabling.

  • it was taking over 30% of cpu - eventually, I went to:

activity monitor/select item/force quit

This did the job of disabling and I had my system back to usual speed

  • That just stops it now. It will be back after you reboot
    – mmmmmm
    Jan 28, 2021 at 12:38
  • I had added an edit to complete my findings but it's not showing up.Having done the above, I then went to delete the app but system wouldn't let me.Message was: The item can’t be moved to the Trash because some of its plugins are in use.From JWMS1985 in discussions.apple.com I found below relating to dropbox but it worked for this too.Level 1 Answer:A: Fixed it by doing the following:control-click on app in finderselect 'show package contents'open folderdelete plugins folderopen finder windownavigate to folder containing app and send to trash It has worked for me
    – Jane Doe
    Jan 28, 2021 at 15:35

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