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Old Aug 27, 2013, 05:19 AM   #1
L T
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How to wipe my Mac mini?

Ok, so I'm going to be selling my Mac mini. How do I completely wipe it so all my data is off?

Thanks
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 05:38 AM   #2
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Boot from a MacOS install DVD and use Secure Erase, then re-install the OS.
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 06:49 AM   #3
blanka
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Download some pron, movies, youtube clips and duplicate till its full. Secure erase is a cumbersome and slow function, 90% of the time failing before it finishes. If you secure erase with zero's, it is not fully NSA proof, and if you do 7 or 35 time noise wipe you might take a week to finish. Pronduplication is most effective, and gives the buyer who tries to recover some fun.
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 07:10 AM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mcarling View Post
Boot from a MacOS install DVD and use Secure Erase, then re-install the OS.
I've had a few people say to boot from the install disc, but none of my mac's have come with this, presumably because they don't have a disc drive?
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 07:14 AM   #5
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If you have a new Mac you will not likely have an install DVD so you can use a USB Recovery Disk.

http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1433?v...S&locale=en_US

Just create the disk, and as noted by mcarling, boot from it and erase then reinstall.

Alternately you can also boot to Internet Recovery with CMD-Option-R and erase/reinstall from there.

Also you can boot with a Time Machine drive. There is a 'recovery partition' hidden in the Time Machine drive.

Either way you need to boot from an option other than the HDD its self to gain full control to erase it completely.

P.S. boot options are available by holding down the option key at start up (in case you did not know).

Last edited by opinio; Aug 27, 2013 at 07:20 AM.
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 07:19 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by L T View Post
Ok, so I'm going to be selling my Mac mini. How do I completely wipe it so all my data is off?

Thanks
Press power button as a cold boot, hold down the 'Alt' key. Go into 'Recovery HD'.

When you're there, select language. Go to Disk Utility. Format Macintosh HD as Extended (Journaled). When that's done, click 'Reinstall OS X'. Install it to the now formatted Macintosh HD.

Not sure why one of the posters gave such a sarcastic answer. I hope this may have actually been of some assistance.

Let me know.
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 07:26 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keysofanxiety View Post
Press power button as a cold boot, hold down the 'Alt' key. Go into 'Recovery HD'.

When you're there, select language. Go to Disk Utility. Format Macintosh HD as Extended (Journaled). When that's done, click 'Reinstall OS X'. Install it to the now formatted Macintosh HD.

Not sure why one of the posters gave such a sarcastic answer. I hope this may have actually been of some assistance.

Let me know.
The Recovery HD you are booting into is on the HDD it self so you need to boot from another device (as I have noted). Otherwise you cannot wipe the entire drive. You only wipe the main OS partition (free space) in your suggestion, not the entire drive. Also, what you are suggesting is not wiping. it is just reformatting. You need to choose the secure erase option.
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 07:27 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by opinio View Post
The Recovery HD you are booting into is on the HDD it self so you need to boot from another device (as I have noted). Otherwise you cannot wipe the entire drive. You only wipe the main OS partition (free space) in your suggestion, not the entire drive. Also, what you are suggesting is not wiping. it is just reformatting. You need to choose the secure erase option.
In all honesty it doesn't matter. If you wipe from an external drive and reinstall OS X, it's just going to put the recovery partition back on. All the data is stored on Macintosh HD, not on the recovery HD. You can secure erase Macintosh HD through DU on the Recovery partition if you're seriously paranoid.

All this stuff about writing 0s and the like is just a bit OTT IMHO.
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 07:36 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by keysofanxiety View Post
In all honesty it doesn't matter. If you wipe from an external drive and reinstall OS X, it's just going to put the recovery partition back on. All the data is stored on Macintosh HD, not on the recovery HD. You can secure erase Macintosh HD through DU on the Recovery partition if you're seriously paranoid.

All this stuff about writing 0s and the like is just a bit OTT IMHO.
I'm not paranoid. The OP asked about 'wiping'. Your suggestion was not wiping thats all. The OP also wanted to 'completely' wipe it so I suggested the drive, not partition. Anyway, its all good.
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 07:45 AM   #10
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Before I read through your replies, and thank you for those replies.

I am starting by moving all of my files to trash and securely erasing the trash.

I guess this is a good start?

I will read the replies now!
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 07:53 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by opinio View Post
I'm not paranoid. The OP asked about 'wiping'. Your suggestion was not wiping thats all. The OP also wanted to 'completely' wipe it so I suggested the drive, not partition. Anyway, its all good.
I figured as the OP was going to sell it on he'd want to wipe all his data and have a fresh copy of OS X on it, so if this is the case this would be the easiest way. Sorry for misinterpreting what you said.
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 09:24 AM   #12
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Originally Posted by L T View Post
Ok, so I'm going to be selling my Mac mini. How do I completely wipe it so all my data is off?

Thanks
Do a command-option-r (all three keys at once) boot to Internet Recovery. Once that starts open Disk Util and select the drive name at the top (like Seagate 500GB or whatever) and erase the entire drive. If you want you can click on the security options button and do a secure erase. Be prepared to wait as this can take a while.

Once the erase is done, quit Disk Util and then click install OS. Now wait for the 4.7GB DL and install. At the end of the install you will get a setup window where you select a language etc. Command-q there to quit and shutdown so the new owner will get the setup wizard at startup.

This will get you back to a fresh install with the OS that came with the machine.
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 10:59 AM   #13
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Thanks guys

Which is the option key?
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Old Aug 27, 2013, 11:04 AM   #14
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Thanks guys

Which is the option key?
The key just to the left of the command key. Same as the "alt" key.
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Old Aug 28, 2013, 07:30 AM   #15
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Thanks Weasel, I am just in the process of doing this now, thanks
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