Monolingual (OS X): List of problematic applications

I use Monolingual from time to time to reconquer some of the hard disk space on my MacBook Pro (sorry, some parts of that post are in German). The tool has been quite helpful: hey, it gave me 2 more gigabytes for … spreadsheets! 😉 Note that using Monolingual is kind of messing around with Mac OS X system files — do it at your own risk. It may brake your system, shave your cat or crumble on your keyboard. You’ve been warned.


Nevertheless, some Mac applications really don’t like their languages to be stripped from the .app package! Keep in mind that you should never ever remove the English language (en) from applications as it may be used as a language default.

I couldn’t find a list with applications having trouble with Monolingual, therefore I try to compile one here. Feel free to post additions in the comments section below.

List of Mac OS X applications known to have some trouble after Monolingual was used:

  • Almost all Adobe products (Acrobat, Creative Suite) for OS X. Acrobat needs to repair PDF browser preview and PDF printer. Repair process hangs. Updates don’t work anymore.
  • Skype (version < 2.6). Crashes during start-up. Version 2.7.0.195 beta seems to work without any problems, though.
  • Cyberduck. Crashes when trying to establish a SSH/SFTP connection. Needs to be re-installed.
  • Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird. Automatic (incremental) updates fail.
  • Viscosity OpenVPN client. Crashes during connection, ask for the key password and fails to set it.

7 thoughts on “Monolingual (OS X): List of problematic applications”

  1. Ah, cool. Hab eben gemerkt, dass Mail fette 240 MB groß ist wegen den language files. Tja. Hab aber auch Adobe und Cyberduck. Fett absaugen oder nicht?

  2. Mail.app habe ich erfolgreich entschlackt — ist jetzt noch 40 MB groß und funktioniert weiterhin einwandfrei.

    An die Adobe-Produkten würde ich Monolingual nicht ran lassen, das lässt sich über eine Ausnahmeliste im Programm einstellen. Cyberduck ist (wie beschrieben) problematisch, das würde ich auch in die Liste der Ausnahmen packen.

    Ansonsten: am besten immer noch irgendwo ein Backup bzw. die Installationsmedien parat haben, falls dann doch mal das eine oder andere Programm nach der Behandlung zickt.

  3. DO NOT USE MONOLINGUAL!!!! I had problems up to my ears caused by this s***t software. It RUINS your files and cannot be reversed!!!! Some components, ex DVD extensions run in korean language files. With Monolungual over $6000 of original software got destroyed on my brand new mac. This software should be banned as a virus!

  4. Matt, I am sure you had a working backup in place so you could restore your original software (BTW: what do you do for a living so you have to spend $6000 on software? Not even Final Cut or ALL of the Adobe products together cost that much!).

    And then, Monolingual clearly states that it comes with absolutely no warranty and COULD make your applications unusuable. So try it out but have your backup handy. You do create backups, don’t you? If not, start right away. Next time, it might be your hard drive failing and that will not only destroy your $6000 software but also billions of dollars the files you work on with that software must be worth.

  5. I had read elsewhere that realplayer could be adversely effected and after a clean reinstall of 10.5 and total ditching of monolingual software this time around, my realplayer problems persist (I have not had a problem with realplayer since 2002) so I am wondering, is it possible that monolingual can damage the firmware or something?

  6. I am pretty sure that Monolingual is not capable of damaging the firmware of an Apple computer.

    I’d rather browse through the $HOME folder of your user to find any user-specific settings that may cause the problem (see, e.g., ~/Library/Application Support/). Make a backup of those files you find, trash them and try if that solve the problem.

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