Completely wipe 2011 Macbook Air

Discussion in 'MacBook Air' started by nooboob, Nov 20, 2011.

  1. macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    #1
    I'm trying to completely wipe my MBA 13'' (the latest model), and am wondering besides just reinstalling Lion on it, the safer route would be. I plan on selling this and granted I don't have sensitive info, I just want to be on the safe side.

    With my old Macbook Pro's, I just 7-layer wiped it, but with these SSD's I understand that things aren't that simple anymore.

    Being completely technical-illiterate, how should I go about doing this? I did a search and read about encrypting, but the whole thing sounds very complicated and confusing. Not really sure on how to begin this...

    Comments and suggestions appreciated. Thanks!
     
  2. Moderator emeritus

    Hellhammer

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #2
    Wiping it once should be enough. SSDs aren't based on magnetism like HDs are so the chance of something being left is pretty close to zero.
     
  3. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    #3
    When you say "wiping", you mean reinstalling the Lion OS, right? To my knowledge, the latest generation Macbook Air's don't have a "wiping" option; just a reinstalling Lion OS option.
     
  4. Moderator emeritus

    Hellhammer

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #4
    You can use Disk Utility to erase the drive. It is available when booting from the recovery partition.
     
  5. macrumors 65816

    agentphish

    Joined:
    Sep 7, 2004
    #5
    You certainly can erase any computer ever made. If it's got storage it can be erased.

    Boot with CMD + R held down, choose disk utility from the utilities menu at the top, choose your drive, go to the erase tab and choose your options and erase.

    Make sure you have an internet connection handy so you can reinstall Lion.
     
  6. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    #6
    Thanks guys. I plan on selling the MBA though... Is there a more secure erase option than this wipe? I've seen it done on other MBA's and it doesn't seem all that secure.

    Here is a quote from another topic: "I have read that when you wipe a SSD, it just "forgets" where the files are and doesn't actually delete the files."
     
  7. Moderator emeritus

    Hellhammer

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #7
    That's if there was no TRIM. TRIM will really erase the data, just use Disk Utility.
     
  8. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    #8
    Thanks Hellhammer. So basically, using FileVault is unnecessary? (Sorry, I'm pretty noob-ish to TRIM and everything else)
     
  9. Moderator emeritus

    Hellhammer

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #9
    FileVault is encryption. It will encrypt the data, which means it cannot be accessed without the password. The problem is that the whole volume needs to be encrypted so the buyer couldn't use the machine at all.
     
  10. macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Mar 26, 2010
    #10
    Im in the same boat as the original poster however due to restrictions I cannot install Lion via the Internet.

    Can I reinstall via USB stick?
     
  11. thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Sep 27, 2011
    #11
    Really? I could have sworn several people used FileVault2 to encrypt their old data, and then erased/reinstalled Lion over that, rendering any access to old data impossible. Does that not work?
     
  12. macrumors 6502a

    #12
    Ummmm.... Silly question (only ever used this on PC) but is there no trace destruction software for Mac?
     
  13. Moderator emeritus

    Hellhammer

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2008
    Location:
    Finland
    #13
    I guess that works too, because you cannot access the encrypted volume, hence it will be wiped before installing. No need to make it more complex though.
     

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