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View Full Version : How long should format on iMac G5 HD take?




LeiQQ
Aug 31, 2011, 06:14 AM
Hi, I'm getting ready to sell my old iMac G5 (rev a) and I want to format the HD before selling. So I went to erase the disk in disk utility and it seems to be taking a long time. I told it to zero out the data and also rewrite it 8 times. I want to be safe because I'm selling it to a stranger and don't want to compromise my personal info. Anyway, selecting both of those options to format a 250GB drive should take how long do you think? Am I going to be waiting hours or days for it to finish? :p

edit: I've been flamed before on here so I just want to say that I found some posts of people saying it took days but they rebooted the machine and then tried formatting it again and it worked. So I just want people to know I did my homework. I'm not just lazy and asking stupid questions. I just want to know if someone has done this and any signs of 'danger' I should know about in case I should just do a hard reboot or something and continue the process. Thanks.



zen.state
Aug 31, 2011, 08:41 AM
Even just to zero data (the fastest of the secure format options) can take 1-3 hours depending on the drive. Any more than that like 8 times will take over a day I bet.

adcx64
Aug 31, 2011, 10:56 AM
as a side note, zeroing out the drive, along with 8 sweeps can dramatically reduce the life of a drive. Not that it matters since your selling it, but it's good to know in the future.

MacHamster68
Aug 31, 2011, 11:28 AM
better inform the buyer that he will need a new drive soon , if its the original drive and survives that ordeal that is ,you attempt the most stressful thing you can do with a old HDD
i keep always the old drives and fit new ones , with HDD's of that size costing next to nothing now
and you would be surprised that you can retrieve data from a even 10 times overwritten drive if you really need to (lots of effort , but possible )

(edit)so unless you got high security info on the drive and are from a iranian nuclear weapon development centre and sold you iMac to the CIA , once overwritten with zero's and reinstalling the OS should be enough

(i buy and sell used computers )

adcx64
Aug 31, 2011, 11:51 AM
better inform the buyer that he will need a new drive soon , if its the original drive and survives that ordeal that is ,you attempt the most stressful thing you can do with a old HDD
i keep always the old drives and fit new ones , with HDD's of that size costing next to nothing now
and you would be surprised that you can retrieve data from a even 10 times overwritten drive if you really need to (lots of effort , but possible )

(i buy and sell used computers )

Exactly. All that constant stress will really take a toll on the drive.

EricNau
Aug 31, 2011, 07:08 PM
I had to remove a few posts. Let's try to keep this thread on-topic. Thanks.

Jethryn Freyman
Sep 5, 2011, 02:05 AM
as a side note, zeroing out the drive, along with 8 sweeps can dramatically reduce the life of a drive. Not that it matters since your selling it, but it's good to know in the future.
No - it's not that stressful to zero out a drive. Yeah he's writing 250GB, but in the big scheme of thing it's not that much.

better inform the buyer that he will need a new drive soon , if its the original drive and survives that ordeal that is ,you attempt the most stressful thing you can do with a old HDD
i keep always the old drives and fit new ones , with HDD's of that size costing next to nothing now
and you would be surprised that you can retrieve data from a even 10 times overwritten drive if you really need to (lots of effort , but possible )

(edit)so unless you got high security info on the drive and are from a iranian nuclear weapon development centre and sold you iMac to the CIA , once overwritten with zero's and reinstalling the OS should be enough

(i buy and sell used computers )
The most data ever been recovered after a magnetic drive was zeroed was 4KB.

yusukeaoki
Sep 5, 2011, 05:43 AM
I recently formatted my 160GB HDD on my iMac G5 and it took me pretty long time. I say about 3~5 hours (sorry, wasnt really counting so).

My iMac's spec is:
iMac G5 2005 model (w/ ambient light sensor)
2GHz
2GB RAM
ATI Radeon 9600 128MB

If yours is later model with iSight it might be faster.
If the earlier model, it can be longer.

tom vilsack
Sep 5, 2011, 02:01 PM
not G5...i just bought a intel 17" iSight 2.0 160 gig hd...did a format with zero's which took about 30 min...installed leopard in about 20 min...all the updates then took about 30 min.

MAC MAN JW
Sep 5, 2011, 03:45 PM
My MDD G4 took 43min to zero out a 250GB 7200RPM Hard Drive. my guess is it will take 1-4 hr. if it is a older hard drive :)