After upgrading my system to 10.15.5 19F101 (late May update, 2020), I found that there are 2 Safari.app's in the system - one is /Applications/Safari.app, and the other one is /System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/Applications/Safari.app.

I want to remove the latter one (sudo rm -rf won't work) as I don't use it and it also shows up in Alfred search results which is annoying. How do I do that?

Edit: ACL / Permissions for the 2nd Safari.app

/bin/ls -led '/System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/Applications/Safari.app'
drwxr-xr-x@ 3 root  wheel  96 May 29 00:42 /System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/Applications/Safari.app
 0: group:everyone deny delete

And for it's parent directory:

/bin/ls -led '/System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/Applications'           
drwxrwxr-x+ 4 root  admin  128 Jun 14 23:46 /System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/Applications
 0: group:everyone deny delete

For the parent-parent directory:

/bin/ls -led '/System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/'            
drwxr-xr-x  7 root  wheel  224 Jun  3 16:12 /System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/

2 Answers 2


In the Finder, navigate to the Safari you don't want, drag it to the Trash, and empty the Trash. During the process, you'll probably be asked to authenticate yourself as an administrator.

  • @TeddyC Somehow you’re got non-standard permissions there. We might need you to list out the actual ACL / permissions and flags on /System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/Applications/
    – bmike
    Jun 14, 2020 at 19:51
  • Shouldn’t not delete it. It’s like that on every system, they are the same files, the issues is Alfred shouldn’t be indexing them and showing them in the results. This could be a Alfred preferences or cache issue.
    – AndrewC
    Jun 28, 2020 at 9:59

It is a throw back to the days of the Archive and Install feature of MacOS and you can not delete it because System Integrity Protection (SIP) is enabled protecting it (its meant to be).

I have this directory on my system and the duplicates are not listing in Alfred suggesting its your Alfred set-up. So I think this is more of an Alfred cache or preferences issue.

Try typing "reload" into Alfred to Reload Alfred Cache. I have heard that this can solve this issue with system volume duplicates.

If it still happens try to exclude the directory in system preference -> spotlight -> privacy (Spotlight is used by Alfred) and Alfred preferences -> features -> default results make sure the directory isn't in the list and make sure search all file types is unchecked.

I think the directory is mapped to your actual profile so the things you see are the same. Think of it as the same file from two different angles.

I am not sure, but perhaps its still there for compatibility because the macOS installation no longer gives the archive option.

  • /System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/Applications/ should not be encumbered by SIP - something else may be afoot. Hard to tell since the question doesn’t give us ACL or flags so it might need to be edited to “how do I determine permissions on a folder” first
    – bmike
    Jun 14, 2020 at 19:52
  • @bmike Yes I just tested it the files in '/System/Volumes/Data/Previous System/Applications/' are the same as 'Applications'. So I have removed the instructions which I didn’t recommend using.
    – AndrewC
    Jun 14, 2020 at 20:06

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