Recently, I was trying to get software that re-maps my mouse's buttons. I stumbled upon a software named Karabiner-Elements, which has the ability to do many things relation to keybindings. After downloading I learned that it was not the software for me, and decided to manually delete it.

However, the application was "Locked", and I was unable to remove this lock, either from the inspector or the command line using chflags nouchg file, which I found linked to another post

I even tried the sacred sudo rm -rf, and was unable to remove it. The answer on that post was using the uninstaller that I stupidly ignored, and this worked.

However, I am still curious as to how an installed software was able to embedded itself so deeply into my computer that I was unable to delete it. I tried ls -lO which returned drwxr-xr-x 7 root wheel. I am not sure what this means, other than the only way to delete this folder is through root. This leads me to my questions.

  • How was this software able to lock itself?
  • How would I go about deleting this software without using the uninstaller?
  • Is this a potential security risk on UNIX devices?

Thank you for your time.


2 Answers 2


Read the shell script:

/Library/Application Support/org.pqrs/Karabiner-Elements/uninstall_core.sh


In summary:

  • Thanks! This is really helpful and I didn't know lots of these concepts! Next time ill use the uninstaller for reference
    – yuwe
    Jun 19, 2020 at 18:08
  • not all uninstaller are so descriptive.. often an opaque executable. Nice to know that it helped you
    – anki
    Jun 19, 2020 at 18:14

Urm, Karabiner Elements literally has an Uninstall button right within its interface.

  • 2
    The OP is asking how to delete the software without using the uninstaller.
    – Allan
    Jun 19, 2020 at 5:42
  • But yet wants to use the uninstaller as the reference. If you are going to do what the uninstaller does, use the uninstaller. Jun 20, 2020 at 13:23

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