McAfee VirusScan for MacMaking programs that can't be uninstalled easily is a software crime in my book. It's bad enough when applications leave behind folders and files after you've dragged them to the Trash (I recommend free AppCleaner helping prevent this) but those that actually leave behind memory sapping and CPU guzzling processes are simply bang out of order.

Which is why if you've ever installed McAfee VirusScan (formerly known as McAfee Virex) on a Mac, you'll need more than the Trashcan to get rid of it. For ages, I had been mystified by a couple of processes running on my system labeled "VShieldCheck" that were sometimes hogging up to 30% of my CPU. A few Google searches later and I realized that these processes were associated with McAfee VirusScan for Mac which I'd tested and uninstalled over six months ago!

The solution I found is to use an uninstaller which comes bundled with the original download. However, I'd obviously deleted the original download a long time ago so my only option was to download McAfee VirusScan, install the darn thing again, and then use the removal tool to get rid of it once and for all. However, even more frustrating, to download it again, I needed to sign-up for a McAfee account!

To save you going through the same ridiculous process I had to, you now download the official McAfee VirusScan uninstaller on Softonic. No sign-ups or wild goose chases needed. Make sure that McAfee Virus Scan is definitely installed on your Mac (if not re-install it) and then run the installer.

McAfee VirusScan Uninstaller screenshot

It opens a dialog in Terminal where you have to enter your password. After that, removal takes just a couple of seconds and you're left with no nasty process remnants.

Incidentally, since removing the VShieldCheck processes associated with this program, my Mac has been running as quiet as a mouse. Especially when using Parallels, the cooling fans would scream like a jumbo jet taking-off and it's my guess that these virus scanning processes were going into overdrive and putting too much load on the RAM and CPU.

Thanks for nothing McAfee!


  • Graeme |

    Thanks so much Nicholas...this post saved me oodles of hassle!

  • Nicholas Mead |
    Nicholas Mead

    You're welcome Graeme! It's a real pain I know. Glad it helped.

  • Daniel |

    I'm currently unable to complete a Migration Assistant migration to a new MacBook Pro because of some McAffee remnant! I installed it for maybe an hour and couldn't stand it, and now it's ruining my computing experience two years later. I'll have to try this and then create a new Time Machine backup after it's done. Thanks!

  • doug |

    Here's another way, from McAfee's own files. You can manually enter the needed command in Terminal.

    here's the link:


    I had the same problem; the damn thing was eating up my entire cpu, but this worked; got rid of it just great.l

  • Dan |

    Dude you are the best. Thanks A bunch!!!!

  • Avuwakoghene |

    What is the password to uninstall. I installed the trial version today and its been hell My sytem is running like a snail since morning

  • Nick Mead |
    Nick Mead

    @Avuwakoghene, There should be no password to enter other than your own system password for your Mac.

  • Alejandra |

    Thank you so much for your help!!!! I've been trying to uninstall the components for a while, my computer was sooo slow, You've made my day a lot happier, thank you again

  • IQ |

    Am new on Mac. Who knows the best antivirus for our OS. I tried Avast: it was like ahhhh gosh,,

  • mg |

    I am another happy person because of this. Thank you!

  • Jonathan.Riggall |

    @IQ - we really don't think you need to install antivirus software on Macs. For more in depth info, read Tom's post on the topic: http://onsoftware.en.softonic.com/why-macs-are-just-as-safe-as-windows-7-pcs

  • Elle |

    I tried to download this but it wouldn't let me type anything where it asked for my password. Then when I tried to open it through a new download (after closing terminal), I kept getting a white box and none of the text from before would appear. Help?

  • Elle |

    Restarted and tried again. Uninstaller worked just fine this time. Didn't realize you couldn't see your password typed out in the Terminal box. Thank you so much!

  • Nick Mead |
    Nick Mead

    @Elle, Glad you worked things out and it helped!

  • Ângela Márcia |
    Ângela Márcia

    Thanks a lot for your tips. I have tried to insert my password in the terminal box, but I had no success. Is there any special key I should press ? thanks

  • Nick Mead |
    Nick Mead

    @Ângela Márcia, Just press Enter.

  • Carlos Gustav |
    Carlos Gustav

    Thank you! You saved my life!

  • Nick Mead |
    Nick Mead

    @Carlos Gustav, Great! Glad it helped.

  • wendy g |
    wendy g


  • Kathy |

    Oh my gosh! If I had not found this information, including all the password entering stuff, I don't know what I would have done. Thanks to you all! My Mac is back!

  • Jocelyn |

    A very useful and easy way to uninstall a program or application is using this GUI-based version that will uninstall applications. www.appremover.com

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