How to backup, wipe and restore your Mac before selling it

Posted:
in Current Mac Hardware edited July 2017
Planning to sell your Mac? AppleInsider covers the step-by-step process of backing up your files, wiping the hard drive and restoring everything on a new machine in this video.








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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 18
    Thank you. I just bought the new iMac and I plan to give my old one to my son. Now I know exactly what to do!
    repressthisAvieshekwatto_cobra
  • Reply 2 of 18
    tyler82tyler82 Posts: 683member
    Shouldn't you zero out the data when formatting the drive?
    willcropointAvieshekminicoffee
  • Reply 3 of 18
    mr squidmr squid Posts: 58member
    The transcript is missing.
  • Reply 4 of 18
    bluefire1bluefire1 Posts: 786member
    Excellent article; thank you!
    I sold my old MacBook Pro two weeks ago when my new Pro with Touch Bar arrived. Fortunately the Apple guy was kind enough to help me wipe my old Mac clean.

    watto_cobra
  • Reply 5 of 18
  • Reply 6 of 18
    mac'em xmac'em x Posts: 93member
    How to back up. Not how to “backup”.
  • Reply 7 of 18
    That's very good guidance. Thank you!
  • Reply 8 of 18
    welshdogwelshdog Posts: 1,583member
    You can also put your old Mac in Target Mode and use the migration option on your new Mac to bring everything over.  This way you don't have to work from a Time Machine back up which can be slow.  Of course you should still make the Time Machine back up or a disk clone using Carbon Copy Cloner before erasing the old Mac.
    jony0
  • Reply 9 of 18
    AvieshekAvieshek Posts: 93member
    I'm still vying for 17" MacBook actually.

    https://www.change.org/p/apple-bring-back-the-17-inch-macbook
  • Reply 10 of 18
    Avieshek said:
    I'm still vying for 17" MacBook actually.

    https://www.change.org/p/apple-bring-back-the-17-inch-macbook
    Me too buddy. 

    Actually i I think it would be a big seller this time around. 17" retina? Yes please. 

    When the next MBP hits with 32-64 GB RAM, a 17" screen would be a huge differentiator in such a svelte form factor. 

    I bought the 15" maxed notebook in January. And I love it.  But I'd sell it in a heartbeat if a 17" was offered. 
  • Reply 11 of 18
    MarvinMarvin Posts: 14,162moderator
    tyler82 said:
    Shouldn't you zero out the data when formatting the drive?
    I would still do it, it can help the system find bad write sectors but it's not necessary any more. Mac filesystems are encrypted by default so when you do a standard erase, nothing is recoverable. When you erase and reinstall, it will ask the new user to setup a new encryption key. Even if a new user managed to recover data, they'd need the long encryption key to decode any of the old files (which the old user likely wouldn't know either), the login password wouldn't work. Apple designed the encryption system to work this way so that it protects every user's data by default.
    macxpressjony0
  • Reply 12 of 18
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,382member
    It occurs to me that Apple could add an additional option in the recovery partition's disk utilities "Selling this Mac" that does everything automatically ... after several " Are you really sure ..." type dialogues with additional options to back up etc. 
    jony0
  • Reply 13 of 18
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,382member
    Avieshek said:
    I'm still vying for 17" MacBook actually.

    https://www.change.org/p/apple-bring-back-the-17-inch-macbook
    Me too buddy. 

    Actually i I think it would be a big seller this time around. 17" retina? Yes please. 

    When the next MBP hits with 32-64 GB RAM, a 17" screen would be a huge differentiator in such a svelte form factor. 

    I bought the 15" maxed notebook in January. And I love it.  But I'd sell it in a heartbeat if a 17" was offered. 
    I agree with the new lightweight form-factors a 17" would be sweet.  The only solution unless a larger screen is ever forthcoming is an additional 23" or 27" monitor on your desk and live with the 15" on the road.  That was how I had to deal with this for my wife.  I'm OK as I use a Mac Pro with large screens anyway and my 15" is just bearable with for mobile when I need it but like you I'd grab a 17" MBP or even MBA.
  • Reply 14 of 18
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,447member
    Avieshek said:
    I'm still vying for 17" MacBook actually.

    https://www.change.org/p/apple-bring-back-the-17-inch-macbook
    You folks need to give it up...it ain't gonna happen! There's a reason why Apple dropped the 17" in the first place. It wasn't selling! The current 15" MacBook Pro gives you more screen space than your 17" does so there's no reason to hold out right now. 
  • Reply 15 of 18
    MacProMacPro Posts: 17,382member
    macxpress said:
    Avieshek said:
    I'm still vying for 17" MacBook actually.

    https://www.change.org/p/apple-bring-back-the-17-inch-macbook
    You folks need to give it up...it ain't gonna happen! There's a reason why Apple dropped the 17" in the first place. It wasn't selling! The current 15" MacBook Pro gives you more screen space than your 17" does so there's no reason to hold out right now. 
    You may well be correct although I'd still love an ultra light 17" MBP or MBA personally.  However,  that the last part?  I have to point out a new 17" would obviously give you more screen space than a current 15".  Comparing the old 17" to the new 15" is, dare I say, Apples and Oranges? There is always a tiny hope though, iPhones and iPads both went gigantic on us lol. Have a heart, some of us don't have the eyesight we used to.

    On a sociological side bar related to that last joke, we baby boomers have lead entitled lives and more often than not get exactly what we need when we need it due to sheer purchasing powers due to our numbers.  Sadly that is now translating into crematorium business!
    edited July 2017 jony0
  • Reply 16 of 18
    macxpressmacxpress Posts: 4,447member
    MacPro said:
    macxpress said:
    Avieshek said:
    I'm still vying for 17" MacBook actually.

    https://www.change.org/p/apple-bring-back-the-17-inch-macbook
    You folks need to give it up...it ain't gonna happen! There's a reason why Apple dropped the 17" in the first place. It wasn't selling! The current 15" MacBook Pro gives you more screen space than your 17" does so there's no reason to hold out right now. 
    You may well be correct although I'd still love an ultra light 17" MBP or MBA personally.  However,  that the last part?  I have to point out a new 17" would obviously give you more screen space than a current 15".  Comparing the old 17" to the new 15" is, dare I say, Apples and Oranges? There is always a tiny hope though, iPhones and iPads both went gigantic on us lol. Have a heart, some of us don't have the eyesight we used to.

    On a sociological side bar related to that last joke, we baby boomers have lead entitled lives and more often than not get exactly what we need when we need it due to sheer purchasing powers due to our numbers.  Sadly that is now translating into crematorium business!
    Some are holding on to their 17" MacBook Pro thinking that just because it has a 17" screen means they're getting more space on it than the current 15" MacBook Pro Retina. I know if hell froze over and pigs started flying that if a 17" MacBook Pro Retina came to fruition, it would have a very high resolution screen on it which would be larger than the 15" (at least we hope!). Some people I guess don't realize its the resolution that counts, not screen size. You can have a 17" screen running at 1920 x 1080 and a 15" screen running at 2880 x 1800, meaning you're getting more space on the 15" than the 17" even though the 17" is larger. All you're doing with the 17" is scratching the pixels. 

    Back in the day, Apple released a 12" iBook and a 14" iBook, both running at 1024 x 768. You really gained nothing by purchasing the 14" iBook as far as getting a larger screen goes. 

    That being said, you realize that if Apple did release a 17" MacBook Pro everything would be smaller? Sure, you can run it at a lower resolution to make the icons and text larger, but then whats the point of getting a 17" laptop if you're just gonna run it at something like at the 15" resolution? If you're having issues seeing now, a 17" high resolution screen only makes it worse!
  • Reply 17 of 18
    If you're really paranoid, reset the pram before selling it , because it contains yoiur wifi password!!!  It's used for internet recovey. Try it sometime. Erase the hard disk with or without resetting the pram and if you erase the pram it will prompt you for your wifi credentials.
    jony0
  • Reply 18 of 18
    tyler82 said:
    Shouldn't you zero out the data when formatting the drive?

    If you are using file vault and erase the hard disk using a single pass and you erase the pram, the Mac loses its 256 bit encryption  key
    and what's left behind is good as erased using current technology. Heh. itd probably faster to encrypt the hard disk, erase it, and lose the key then it is to sit there while Mac OS X makes 3 or more passes on a mechanical disk. Plus on a ssd , Mac won't let you do more then one pass anyway 

    The possible combinations of a lost 255 but key is 115792089237316195423570985008687907853269984665640564039457
    584007913129639936. You know, your wifi router changes its 256 bit key every hour. So you can say wifi is higher security then your hard disk 
    jony0
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