How do you do a complete wipe from the iMac?

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Yogakun, Nov 19, 2012.

  1. macrumors member

    Jul 28, 2010
    How do your remove all data from an Imac and restore it to it's original boot OS (Lion). I know there was an option at the startup.

    I want the most secure option to remove all my data, because I'm selling it.
  2. macrumors regular


    Apr 19, 2010
    Solomons Island, MD
    Remove all applications except for the Apple apps, and of course remove all of your data, reset Safari, delete all user account except for the Admin. Make a new user account (I called mine "new owner"), reboot the machine and log into the new account that your just made, delete your old user account. Go to Applications, Utilities, Disk Utilities, Click on your Primary HD, Select the Erase Tab, then look in the lower right side of the windows for Erase Free Space. Click the Security Option button first and choose 3-pass, then click the Erase Free Space. DO NOT CLICK THE ERASE BUTTON. Depending on your HD size it will take from 5-10 hours, but your are as safe as you can be that your information is gone, short of replacing the drive.
  3. macrumors 6502a

    Nov 10, 2012
    Hold Command+R while booting to get into recovery mode.

    I can't remember where the restore button is (And I can't find an article about it) but see how that goes.

    Don't know what the other guy is talking about...
  4. macrumors member

    Nov 11, 2011
    Mac OS X: How to zero all data on a disk

    Then do a fresh install of the OS. All info will be overwritten by 1's & 0's, nothing will remain on the disk to recover.
  5. macrumors 6502a

    Jun 24, 2012
    He's talking about zeroing the disk, albeit in a complicated way.
  6. macrumors member

    Nov 20, 2010
    1. Use Disk Utility to burn the 'Mac OS X Lion DVD' to a DVD or external drive. If using an external, first erase it ('Erase' tab) and partition it ('Partition' tab) with 1 GUID Partition Table (default, check under 'Options'). Also make sure it's Mac OS Journaled (default, but double-check). Now you can burn the .dmg file onto the external or DVD using the 'Restore' tab.
    --If you already have a Lion DVD or flash drive, this is not necessary.

    2. System Preferences > Startup Disk > Select External/DVD with disk image > Restart

    3. You will now boot from disk image you made. Once the installation opens up, go to the top bar to 'Utilities' and click 'Disk Utility'. Find the hard drive that you want to install OS X on. Go to the 'Erase' tab and erase it. You can zero it out too if you want, though it takes a long time. Go to the 'Partition' tab and partition it (same steps as in #1). Once erased, exit Disk Utility.

    4. Follow the OS X instructions to install Lion. When you get to the screen asking what drive to install on, click the internal drive.

    5. Your computer will restart after it's done and will boot to the new desktop after you set the language, time, registration, etc.

    Hope that helps.

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