Challenging iMac situation

Discussion in 'iMac' started by queshy, Sep 17, 2017.

  1. queshy macrumors 68040


    Apr 2, 2005

    I have an old 17" white iMac, probably at least 10 years old. It hasn't been used in a few years. I am downsizing and need to get rid of it.

    I am trying to figure out a way to format the hard drive for obvious reasons before getting rid of it, but for some reason it only boots into Windows, and secondly, I cannot get it to pair with any bluetooth mouse or keyboard. I suppose I will have to find a wired mouse and keyboard to use with it...but even then not sure how to go about formatting it. Is it just a matter of inserting a Leopard or Snow Leopard disc into the CD drive, booting from the disc and then erasing the hard drive?

    Thanks so much!
  2. pmouritz macrumors member

    Oct 14, 2015
    Copenhagen, Denmark
    Hey Queshy

    You could physically take out the harddrive from the computer and get a SATA to USB and connect it to another Mac or Windows computer and format the entire drive. Otherwise, I am pretty sure that if you boot from a Snow Leopard disc, you will be able to use the Disk Utility and from there you can erase the hard drive.

    Hope it helps! It is an old iMac you got there but I am pretty confident that the above will work, at least the first solution will definitely work :)
  3. queshy thread starter macrumors 68040


    Apr 2, 2005
    Thanks so much for your reply. I looked at iFixit articles about removing the hard drive - it's definitely not for novices!! Looking for an easier solution, hopefully that disc will work!

    There is also an old 1st gen MBA that I'll need to do the same thing for - will be hard to do without the drive though. Is there a way to get into disc utility without a CD drive?

    Thanks again!
  4. nambuccaheadsau macrumors 68000


    Oct 19, 2007
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    It is more than ten years old, somewhere between fourteen and twelve depending on the precise model. It will have very little resale value, so here is an opportunity to follow ifixit's instructions and learn about dismantling iMacs.
  5. Fishrrman macrumors P6


    Feb 20, 2009
    You don't need to dismantle it.
    That's ridiculous.

    1. Get a wired USB keyboard and mouse. They don't have to be from Apple. ANYTHING will do for your needs.
    2. Get either an appropriate install DVD -or- create a bootable USB installer (not hard to do, and you can do it on your current Mac)
    You probably can't download the old OS from Apple. You'll have to find it (cough, choke) "elsewhere"...
    3. Boot from the USB installer or DVD, then re-initialize the internal drive
    4. Install a fresh copy of the OS onto it
    5. You'll probably want to do an initial setup of the new OS, a prospective buyer might want to see it turn on and get to the finder.

    Or... you could donate it somewhere.

    I, too, have an old white Intel iMac. Still runs ok.
    I keep it around for music-related things.
  6. Zeke D macrumors 65816

    Zeke D

    Nov 18, 2011
    I have six polycarbonate iMacs that I heed to retire soon. I just downloaded Lion from the App Store, followed instructions on the internet to make a USB installer, and after the second reboot, just shut down the unit.

Share This Page

5 September 17, 2017