Resetting Mac OS X??

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by appletimeuser, Dec 28, 2005.

  1. appletimeuser macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2005
    #1
    Hi There. I am selling a 5-month old laptop on eBay and I would like to clean my laptop from any files, information, or data that I entered while I used the computer. Are there instructions anywhere to do that? Like I want to make it be brand new completely... Do I have to reinstall the operating system? Or is there a different way to do so?

    Thanks!
     
  2. jhu macrumors 6502a

    jhu

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2004
    #2
    the easiest way is to just reformat and reinstall
     
  3. appletimeuser thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2005
  4. jhu macrumors 6502a

    jhu

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2004
    #4
    if you have the install disk, just reinstall the os and it will help you through erasing the entire disk and installing the os fresh.
     
  5. appletimeuser thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2005
    #5
    Okay... and how can I backup all my files or whatever?
     
  6. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #6
    How do you back up currently?
     
  7. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #7
    EDIT: This is specifically how to reformat... sorry, the other posts came up while I was writing it. :eek:

    1. Put the system install / restore CD or DVD that you have in the drive.

    2. Launch System Preferences -> Startup Disk. Select the CD / DVD from here, and click the restart button inside the Sys Prefs window.

    3. The computer will shut down and then boot off of the install disc.

    4. When you go through the prompts, you will get to a window that has an "Options" or similar button, I think, in the lower left corner. Click it.

    5. You will get a list of ways to install. One of them will be something similar to "Erase and Install." Follow the directions. You can use any of the methods of erasing. The ones that write zeros to the disk are more secure (prevent you from losing your data), but may take a long, long time.

    Let me know if this helps? :)
     
  8. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #8
    What he meant by this, was it helps prevent your data from being recovered and 'stolen'.
     
  9. appletimeuser thread starter macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jul 31, 2005
    #9
    I am sooo confused... what exactly is reformatting supposed to do and when should I do it? After I backed up my files or before? And to answer the question.. I don't backup my files currently...
     
  10. jhu macrumors 6502a

    jhu

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2004
    #10
    you need to backup your data before reformatting and reinstalling. otherwise all your data will be gone. as for how to backup, you can always a cd(s) of your data.
     
  11. mkrishnan Moderator emeritus

    mkrishnan

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2004
    Location:
    Grand Rapids, MI, USA
    #11
    Reformatting or erasing removes all of the files from your computer. Which probably answers the second question. (If not, the answer is BEFORE!)

    Find out how much space the files take up by highlighting all the folders and using "Get Info" from the Finder menus. Depending on how big they are, you can burn them onto one / several CDs or DVDs. You do this by:

    Inserting the disk into the drive. It will ask you what you want to do with it. Select the option to use finder to burn it. It should mount on the desktop. Open it, and it appears as a folder window. Drag all the files you want on it into the folder. When you're ready, you click the burn icon in the upper right of this folder. :)
     
  12. yellow Moderator emeritus

    yellow

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2003
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    #12
    That's a really bad idea that should be rectified immediately. What happens if your hard drive fails?

    A couple hundred dollars invested now will save you a headache and (potentially) thousands of dollars in the future.

    You should buy an external firewire hard drive and back up your data periodically to that. Is it 100% effective? No, that hard drive can fail too, but the chances of both going simultaneously are small, and it's certainly more effective than not backing up at all.
     

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