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Old Aug 31, 2011, 06:14 AM   #1
LeiQQ
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Question How long should format on iMac G5 HD take?

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?

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.

Last edited by LeiQQ; Aug 31, 2011 at 06:17 AM. Reason: add more info
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Old Aug 31, 2011, 08:41 AM   #2
zen.state
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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.

Last edited by EricNau; Sep 3, 2011 at 01:34 PM. Reason: no need to be rude
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Old Aug 31, 2011, 10:56 AM   #3
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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.
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Old Aug 31, 2011, 11:28 AM   #4
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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 )
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Last edited by MacHamster68; Aug 31, 2011 at 12:08 PM.
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Old Aug 31, 2011, 11:51 AM   #5
adcx64
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MacHamster68 View Post
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.
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Old Aug 31, 2011, 07:08 PM   #6
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I had to remove a few posts. Let's try to keep this thread on-topic. Thanks.
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Old Sep 5, 2011, 02:05 AM   #7
Jethryn Freyman
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Quote:
Originally Posted by adcx64 View Post
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.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MacHamster68 View Post
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.
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Old Sep 5, 2011, 05:43 AM   #8
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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.
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Old Sep 5, 2011, 02:01 PM   #9
tom vilsack
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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.
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Old Sep 5, 2011, 03:45 PM   #10
MAC MAN JW
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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
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