How to uninstall Shift from a linux computer

Shift is an app that allows you to combine several productivity apps in a single package — email, calendars, and so on. I hope to use it to combine my union and university accounts.

I’m having some problems getting it to work, however, the various tech people keep asking me to uninstall Shift before or after doing something. Unfortunately, unlike a lot of applications, Shift doesn’t come with a handy uninstall.sh to match its install.sh installation script.

It does have relatively clear uninstallation instructions on its website, though you need to find them (I didn’t see any direct links from any page dealing with installation) and there’s an error in the Linux instructions. Since I have to keep finding this page and then rediscover the error every time, I thought I’d record the corrected instructions here:

rm -rf ~/Downloads/Shift-linux-x64
rm -rf ~/.config/Shift

First of all note that rm -rf is a very dangerous command. It recursively force-removes entire directories without telling you what it is doing or giving you a chance to correct a mistake. You should never use it without understanding what you are doing and why… and triple checking for errors and typos.

Having given this warning, however, let me go through this:

  1. The first line recursively removes the folder in your Downloads folder that contains the Shift app. This is where the Shift instructions seem to have a mistake (or at least are unclear): they say to “navigate to the directory containing the extracted shift-linux-XXX folder.’ shift-linux-XXX.zip is the name of the download file you use to extract Shift. But the name of the folder that you extract to is Shift-linux-x64 (note the case difference as well on Shift).
  2. In my case, I extracted to the Downloads folder. ~/ is a way of saying /$Username/home/.
  3. rm is the command for “remove.” The option -r says to remove recursively (i.e. moving through any subdirectories), and the -f says to force the removal, rather than asking for permission every file.

You can find the original instructions (for Linux, Windows, and Mac) here: https://support.tryshift.com/kb/article/194-how-do-i-uninstall-the-shift-app-from-my-desktop/

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