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Can I Delete Disk Images on Mac? [Answered]

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Last updated: September 6, 2023

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Wondering if you can delete .dmg files on your Mac? Yes, you can delete disk images on a Mac. Disk images are virtual containers that store files and folders in a compressed format. They can be useful for software installation or data backup. However, there may come a time when you no longer need a disk image and want to reclaim the disk space it occupies.

In this guide, I’ve shared how you can delete disk images on Mac, providing a straightforward answer to your question. So, read on to find out the steps involved.

Before We Begin

Removing files from your Mac is a straightforward process that anyone can perform. But manually deleting apps leaves leftover files hidden on your Mac. So, it’s better to use an app uninstaller, like MacKeeper, to get rid of unwanted apps with their associated files.

What Are Disk Images on Mac?

disk images

Disk images on Mac are virtual files that serve as containers for storing and organizing data. They are essentially a virtual representation of a physical disk or storage device, such as a hard drive or a DVD. Disk images can be created for various purposes, including software installation, backup, and distribution.

When you mount a disk image on your Mac, it appears as a separate volume in the Finder, similar to an external drive. You can then access the contents of the disk image and interact with them as if they were stored on a physical disk.

This allows you to install software, access files, or perform other operations within the disk image without modifying your Mac’s system or storage. Disk images can have different file formats, such as DMG (Disk Image) or ISO (Optical Disc Image), which determine the specific features and compatibility of the image.

Is it Safe to Delete DMG Files on Mac?

Yes, it is generally safe to delete DMG files on Mac once you have finished using them. A DMG file, also known as a disk image file, is essentially an archive that contains the contents of an application, software, or installer.

Deleting the DMG file will not affect the installed application or software on your Mac. The installed program will remain intact, and you can access and use it as usual.

However, it is important to note that if you delete a DMG file without properly installing the associated software, you won’t be able to reinstall or update the software without downloading the DMG file again.

Why Should I Delete Disk Images on Mac?

Deleting disk images on Mac is beneficial for several reasons:

  1. 💾 Freeing up disk space: Disk images can occupy a significant amount of storage space on your Mac, especially if you frequently download and mount them. You can reclaim valuable disk space and improve your Mac’s performance by deleting unnecessary disk images.
  2. 📂 Organization and tidiness: Removing disk images keeps your file system organized and uncluttered. It eliminates unnecessary files and reduces visual clutter, making it easier to locate and manage the files and applications you need.
  3. 🔒 Preventing security risks: Keeping unused disk images on your Mac may pose potential security risks. Disk images, especially those obtained from untrusted sources or outdated software, could potentially contain malware or vulnerabilities. Deleting them minimizes the risk of accidentally opening or running malicious files.
  4. 🔄 Easier software management: Once you have installed an application or software from a disk image, keeping the disk image is unnecessary for regular usage. Deleting the disk image simplifies software management by removing redundant files and streamlining your application library.
  5. 🛠️ Regular maintenance: Deleting disk images is part of routine system maintenance. Like removing temporary files or cleaning up your Downloads folder, regularly deleting disk images helps keep your Mac organized and optimized.

Before deleting any disk image, ensure you have properly installed or transferred any required files or applications to your Mac’s storage. Once you have confirmed that, you no longer need the disk image and can safely delete it.

How Can I Delete Disk Images on Mac?

Deleting disk images on your Mac is a straightforward process that can help you reclaim valuable storage space, enhance system organization, and maintain a clean and efficient file system.

Whether you want to remove disk images to free up disk space or improve software management, understanding how to delete these virtual containers is essential.

Below, I’ve shared how you can delete disk images on Mac to keep your system tidy and optimized.

1. Manually Delete Disk Images on Mac

Deleting disk images manually gives you control over removing unnecessary files and reclaiming valuable storage space on your Mac. Below, you can find the steps to delete disk images on Mac manually.

  1. Open a Finder window by clicking the Finder icon in the Dock.
click finder in your dock
  1. Navigate to the location where the disk images are stored. Typically, disk images are saved in the Downloads folder or in the folder where you downloaded or saved them.
nevigate to the downloads
  1. Identify the disk image files you want to delete. They usually have the file extension .dmg or .iso, but it may vary depending on the specific disk image format.
disk images
  1. Select the disk image files you wish to delete. You can select multiple files at once by clicking each file while holding the Command ⌘ key.
macbook air command key
  1. After selecting the desired disk images, press the Command ⌘ + Delete keys on your keyboard or right-click the selected files and choose Move to Bin from the context menu. Alternatively, you can drag the selected files to the Bin icon in the Dock.
right click selected files and choose Move to Bin
  1. To permanently delete the disk image files and reclaim disk space, empty the Bin. Right-click the Bin icon in the Dock and choose Empty Bin from the menu.
right click the bin and select empty bin
  1. Confirm that you want to delete the file permanently by clicking Empty Bin in the pop-up window.
click empty bin on the prompt to delete disk images
  1. The selected disk image files will now be permanently deleted from your Mac, freeing up storage space and removing them from your file system.

Remember to exercise caution when deleting disk image files, ensuring you no longer need them or have properly installed any required software or files from within the disk images.

2. Quickly Delete Disk Images on Mac With MacKeeper

If you’re looking for a convenient and efficient way to delete disk images on your Mac, MacKeeper offers a solution that streamlines the process. MacKeeper is a comprehensive utility software that includes a range of features for optimizing and maintaining your Mac.

Among its capabilities is the ability to quickly delete leftovers, including disk images, allowing you to free up storage space and maintain a clutter-free system with just a few clicks.

Here are the steps to delete disk images on Mac using MacKeeper:

  1. Download and install MacKeeper on your Mac.
  2. Launch MacKeeper and select the Smart Uninstaller option from the left sidebar.
click smart uninstaller in the left sidebar
  1. Click the Start Scan button to scan all installed applications on your Mac.
click start scan in smart uninstaller
  1. When the scan completes, click Leftovers in the left sidebar.
click leftovers in the left sidebar of smart uninstaller
  1. Select the leftover files you want to delete in the right pane and click Remove Selected.
select the leftover files you want to delete and click remove selected
  1. Tap the Remove button to confirm the removal.
click remove on the pop up
  1. Wait for MacKeeper to remove the leftover files completely. Click Rescan if you want to run the scan again.
click rescan in smart uninstaller

What Else Can MacKeeper Do?

Besides uninstalling apps on your Mac with their leftover files, MacKeeper can also delete junk files, remove duplicates, and scan your Mac for malware. To learn more about the amazing features of this software utility, check out my MacKeeper review.

Best Practices for Deleting Disk Images on Mac

Deleting disk images on Mac is an essential task that can help optimize your Mac’s performance and free up valuable storage space. To ensure that you delete disk images from your Mac safely and effectively, here are some best practices to keep in mind:

Frequently Asked Questions

  1. Can I delete a disk image that is currently mounted on my Mac?

    No, you cannot delete a disk image that is currently mounted on your Mac. You must first unmount the disk image by ejecting it from your Mac, and then you can delete the disk image.

  2. Will deleting a disk image on my Mac affect any applications or programs that I have installed on my Mac?

    No, deleting a disk image on your Mac will not affect any applications or programs that you have installed on your Mac. Disk images are typically used to store files and folders; deleting them will not affect any installed applications or programs.

  3. Can I delete a disk image that I have encrypted on my Mac?

    Yes, you can delete a disk image that you have encrypted on your Mac. However, you must first decrypt the disk image by entering the correct password, and then you can delete the disk image. 

Hashir Ibrahim


I'm Hashir, a tech journalist with a decade of experience. My work has been featured in some of the top tech publications like MakeUseOf and MakeTechEasier. I have a bachelor's degree in IT, a master's in cybersecurity, and extensive knowledge of Apple hardware, specifically MacBooks. As the senior writer at MacBook Journal, I write in depth guides that help you solve any issues you have with your mac and unbiased reviews that help you make the right buying decisions.



Hi there! I'm Ojash, a tech journalist with over a decade of experience in the industry. I've had the privilege of contributing to some of the world's largest tech publications, making my mark as a respected Mac expert. My passion lies in exploring, using, and writing about MacBooks, and I enjoy sharing my expertise to help others make informed decisions and get the most out of their MacBook experience. Join me as we delve into the fascinating world of MacBooks together!

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