I deleted the Office suite from my MacBook, but I receive notifications from Microsoft AutoUpdate that there are software updates. How can it be if I deleted Office? How to uninstall Microsoft AutoUpdate?

7 Answers 7


While Microsoft's guide for uninstalling Office says to remove files from your user Library, Microsoft AutoUpdate is actually located in the system Library, in /Library/Application Support/Microsoft/MAU2.0. The simplest way to uninstall the app if it's open is to secondary click the icon in the dock, select Options > Show in Finder, Go > Enclosing Folder and delete the MAU2.0 folder.

  • 1
    Didn't work for me. Jul 24, 2019 at 6:49
  • There is also /Library/PrivilegedHelperTools/com.microsoft.autoupdate.helper
    – jhfrontz
    Oct 23, 2020 at 15:12

On macOS Mojave 10.14.1, this is what I found:

Microsoft Auto Update had 19 files on macOS in multiple directories, after I'd already removed it from ~/Library/Containers. You should remove those folders to completely remove the application and all it's traces. Some of the directories have spaces in their names, make sure to type those spaces with a leading backslash, if you use rm -Rf to remove those!

In your System Library:

/Library/Application Support/Microsoft/MAU2.0/Microsoft AutoUpdate.app

In your User-Library:

~/Library/Application Support/Microsoft AU Daemon
~/Library/Saved Application State/com.microsoft.autoupdate2.savedState

You will also find temporary files, I had them in four different locations, but your mac will clean those up eventually. I found some in the system- and user-caches, as well as in /private/var/folders, if you really want all traces gone, you'll have to track those down as well.

  • 4
    Wow, are all app developers this intrusive, or is it just Microsoft that leaves unwanted residues all over the operating system?
    – M -
    Aug 13, 2019 at 17:11
  • @Marquizzo In my experience, this is the norm on a Mac. It's like there are ten different places where you could hide your executables, and every app maker takes full advantage of it.
    – ankush981
    Sep 9, 2021 at 9:57

Follow the Manual Steps here

Make sure to check:

  • ~/Library/Preferences/
  • ~/Library/Application Support/
  • ~/Library/Caches/
  • /Library/Preferences/
  • /Library/Application Support/
  • /Library/Caches/

There might be other directories but you get the point, the guide explains it fairly well.

Hope this helps!


Check under /Library/PrivilegedHelperTools, all kinds of skeletons lurk there from applications that had been installed at some point. I found the following executables in this folder related to MS-Office:

  • did you delete all 3 of them?
    – yts61
    Feb 5, 2021 at 20:18

Simplest would be to use the Uninstall tool - MS KB Troubleshoot Office 2011 for Mac issues by completely uninstalling before you reinstall

  • I used Office 2016
    – Aker
    Mar 22, 2018 at 12:32
  • Then by the same magical powers of Google, let me preset support.office.com/en-us/article/…
    – Tetsujin
    Mar 22, 2018 at 12:34
  • @Tetsujin does not include removal of the AutoUpdater :/
    – Andi
    Jan 23, 2019 at 8:11

This is an old question, but one solution past manually doing rem moving items is to download and install the app AppCleaner and just drag Microsoft AutoUpdate on it and let it figure out what files to remove to completely purge it from your system.

Each version of Microsoft Office might be different, but app cleaning apps like AppCleaner work great.

  • AppCleaner (version 3.5) Can't see Ms AutoUpdate. It simply doesn't list it. Jul 29, 2019 at 9:48

You can change the update installation procedure from the Office app. Open any Office application (e.g. Microsoft Word)

  • Open AutoUpdate window through the Help -> Check for Updates.
  • Then select Manually Check radio button.

I think it will resolve your problem. Microsoft AutoUpdate process won't be executed.

  • Welcome to Super User. Could you perhaps edit your answer and explain how OP should do that, if they removed the Office suite as they indicated?
    – bertieb
    Aug 3, 2019 at 22:16

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