macos system preferences iconIn macOS, the System Preferences app located in the Applications folder is where you can adjust various settings to customize your Mac. Most system preference panes are native to macOS and cannot be removed – although they can be hidden. In this article, we'll show you how it's done.

Occasionally, third-party apps installed on your Mac will insert their own preference panes in the bottom row of the System Preferences panel. Sometimes these panes will pointlessly stick around even after you've uninstalled the associated app. Thankfully though, they can be removed separately. To jump to our instructions on how to do that, click here.

How to Hide a Native System Preferences Pane

  1. Launch System Preferences from your Mac's Dock, from the Applications folder, or from the Apple menu bar ( -> System Preferences...).
    1 launch system preferences macos

  2. From the System Preferences menu bar, select View -> Customize.... Alternatively, click and hold the Show All button located to the right of the forward and back arrow buttons at the top of the System Preferences window.
    2 customize system preference pances mac

  3. A blue checkbox will appear next to each pane in the System Preferences window. Uncheck the panes that you wish to hide.

  4. Press Done.

Tip: The View menu includes an option to change the preference pane arrangement from the default Organize by Categories to Organize Alphabetically, and vice versa.

How to Remove Third-Party Preference Panes

  1. Launch System Preferences from your Mac's Dock, from the Applications folder, or from the Apple menu bar ( -> System Preferences...).
    1 identify system preference pane to remove macos

  2. Locate the third-party pane in the bottom row of System Preferences that you wish to remove.

  3. Right-click (or Ctrl-click) the third-party pane and select the pop-up option Remove "[name of pane]" Preference Pane.
    remove third party preference pane mac

  4. Enter your admin password if requested to do so.

The above steps should work for most third-party preference panes, but if you want to manually delete a preference pane file from your Mac, here's how.

How to Remove Preference Pane Files Manually

  1. Open a Finder window.

  2. From the Finder menu bar, click the Go menu, hold down the Option (⌥) key, and then select Library in the dropdown menu.

  3. In the Library folder, open the PreferencePanes subfolder.
    manually delete preference pane file

  4. Identify the .prefPane file for the specific preference pane that you want to remove. (If you can't see it, you may need to look in the global system library folder. To open the folder from the Finder menu bar, select Go -> Go to Folder..., type /Library/PreferencePanes and click the Go button.)

  5. Right-click (or Ctrl-click) the file and select Move to Trash.

  6. Restart your Mac.

Top Rated Comments

RedTomato Avatar
44 months ago
what would be one good reason to remove them?
Why not read the article and find out? Or just look at the pictures in the article.

EDIT: For the truly lazy, there's no need to go that far. It's covered in the second paragraph of the OP's summary above you.
Score: 6 Votes (Like | Disagree)
homonto Avatar
44 months ago
what would be one good reason to remove them?
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
ike1707 Avatar
44 months ago
I just want to know how to remove the preinstalled social media integration for Facebook, Twitter and the like. Which should not come preinstalled on any OS in my opinion.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)
elvisimprsntr Avatar
44 months ago
what would be one good reason to remove them?
Someone likely thumbed though a NIST or other macOS hardening guide and discovered you could remove the system preference GUI to make it more difficult for users to modify security related settings.
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Mr_Brightside_@ Avatar
44 months ago
Is it possible to move Panes? It really irks me how they've moved Startup Disk in 10.12/.13
Score: 1 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Pro Display XDR Yella

Apple Working on External Display With Built-In A13 Chip

Friday July 23, 2021 9:37 am PDT by
Apple is developing an external display that includes an A13 chip with Neural Engine, according to a new rumor from 9to5Mac. The A13 chip with Neural Engine would presumably serve as an eGPU, though details are light at this time. Having a CPU/GPU built into the external display could help Macs deliver high-resolution graphics without using all the resources of the computer's internal chip....
airpods 3 gizmochina Feature

AirPods 3 Rumored to Launch Alongside iPhone 13 at Expected September Event

Friday July 23, 2021 12:54 am PDT by
The third-generation AirPods will likely launch at the same event revealing Apple's upcoming iPhone 13 lineup, according to a report from DigiTimes, which makes the claim citing sources familiar with the matter. The report as a whole echoes previous reporting that production of the third-generation AirPods will kickstart in August, meaning a launch shortly after can be easily expected. DigiTi...
discount m1 macbook yellow

Deals: Shop Record Low Prices Across Apple's Full MacBook Pro and MacBook Air Lineup (Up to $499 Off)

Friday July 23, 2021 8:23 am PDT by
Apple's MacBook Pro and MacBook Air lineup is seeing all-time low discounts across the board today, including the 2019 16-inch MacBook Pro, 2020 13-inch MacBook Air, and 2020 13-inch MacBook Pro. Note: MacRumors is an affiliate partner with some of these vendors. When you click a link and make a purchase, we may receive a small payment, which helps us keep the site running. 13-Inch M1...
iPad mini pro feature

Next iPad Mini Won't Feature Mini-LED Display, Claims Display Analyst

Friday July 23, 2021 8:07 am PDT by
Yesterday, DigiTimes claimed that the upcoming iPad mini will feature a mini-LED display, but now, display analyst Ross Young is going at odds with that report, claiming that while the updated iPad mini continues to be on track for a release this year, it won't feature a mini-LED display. Young says he "confirmed" with Radiant Opto-Electronics, who DigiTimes claims would provide Apple with...
idos 2 app ios

Apple to Pull 'iDOS 2' DOS Emulator From App Store

Thursday July 22, 2021 3:22 pm PDT by
iDOS 2, an app designed to allow users to play classic DOS games, will soon be pulled from the App Store, the app's creator said today. According to iDOS developer Chaoji Li, he tried to submit an iDOS update with bug fixes to the App Store, but was told that the update was rejected because it violated the 2.5.2 App Store guideline that says apps cannot install or launch executable code.Durin...
m1 macbook air

Kuo: Mini-LED MacBook Air Coming in Mid-2022

Thursday July 22, 2021 7:48 pm PDT by
Apple will release a new version of the MacBook Air around the middle of 2022, Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo said today in note to investors seen by MacRumors. The upcoming MacBook Air will feature a 13.3-inch mini-LED display, which would make it the second Mac to gain mini-LED technology after the 2021 MacBook Pro, which is rumored to include a mini-LED display and is expected to launch later ...
iphone12cameras

iPhone Helps to Identify Rare Form of Cancer

Friday July 23, 2021 4:00 am PDT by
A photo taken on an iPhone has helped to identify a rare form of cancer, according to news reports. A mother of three from Gainesville, Florida took a photo of her three-month-old son using her iPhone and its True Tone flash, which highlighted an abnormality in his right eye. The boy's mother, a labor and delivery nurse, recalled learning about retinoblastoma during her training....
iphone 13 blue with text

iPhone 13 May Support 25W Fast Charge Power Adapter

Friday July 23, 2021 2:52 am PDT by
The iPhone 13 may support faster-charging speeds with a 25W power adapter, compared to the current limitation of the iPhone 12, which only supports fast charging at up to 20W, according to a rumor originating from China. The iPhone 12 supports fast charging with a 20W or higher power adapter; however, even if users use a more powerful wall adapter, the iPhone itself only supports up to 20W....
iPad mini pro feature

Next-Generation iPad Mini Will Reportedly Feature a Mini-LED Display

Thursday July 22, 2021 9:03 am PDT by
Apple is widely rumored to be planning a new iPad mini with a significant redesign, including a larger 8.5-inch to 9-inch display with slimmer bezels, a Touch ID power button instead of a home button, a USB-C port instead of a Lightning connector, and more. According to a paywalled preview of a DigiTimes report today, the sixth-generation iPad mini will also feature a mini-LED display:BLU...
magsafe battery pack iphone 12 mini

Top Stories: Hands-On With MagSafe Battery Pack, iPhone 13 Always-On Display?

Saturday July 24, 2021 6:00 am PDT by
Apple's new MagSafe Battery Pack is now available, and we went hands-on this week for some early impressions of the new accessory to get more battery life out of Apple's iPhone 12 lineup. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. This week also saw a number of rumors about the upcoming redesigned MacBook Pro models, the iPhone 13 lineup, the next-generation iPad mini, a new...