I want to sell my computers/give them away. How do I delete everything on them?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by morgothaod, Aug 31, 2010.

  1. morgothaod macrumors regular

    Aug 26, 2009
    I'll begin with I'm computer illiterate. I really need a reply that a computer dummy like myself can understand. I tried googling "How to delete everything on a computer" and it came up with a lot of different ways. I'm not sure which one to follow and most of them weren't helpful to me (They talked about stuff that I did not understand). Basically I want to clear everything so I can sell or give these computers away and not have someone discover whatever info I put on the computers. If I can accomplish that without getting rid of the operating systems I would prefer that.

    I have 3 computers:

    Macbook Pro (OS X and Windows 7 64 bit edition on it)
    Compaq Pesario with Windows Me
    CyberPower with Windows XP Home edition (This computer has a virus on it and I'm unable to get to the desktop)

    I believe I only have the OS X disc .

    Ideally I would prefer the easiest method to get rid of the data because I'm not very knowledgeable about computers.

    Thanks to anyone who can help me :cool:

    If anyone is curious, I want to get rid of my computers because I am addicted to them.
  2. Mal macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2002
    Odd reason to get rid of computers, especially since you claim you're not very literate, but to each his own.

    Can't help with the PC's, but to erase the Mac, here you go:

    1. Insert OS disk into computer.
    2. Start up (or restart) the computer while holding down the C key.
    3. Choose your language.
    4. From the menus at the top, choose "Utilities" then "Disk Utility."
    5. Select the hard drive from the list on the left. It should be the first entry, you will see two lines, one with the size and model, and the other with the name. Either one will do, it doesn't matter for this purpose.
    6. From the tabs in the right hand pane, choose "Erase".
    7. Click the "Erase" button towards the bottom of that window (rename the drive first if you would rather give it a different name from the default).
    8. Quit Disk Utility.
    9. Follow the prompts to install Mac OS X (so you don't give someone a useless computer).
    10. When the install finishes and the Setup Assistant plays the video after the computer restarts, hit Command-Q to be able to shut down the computer without completing the setup process.
    11. You're done!

    Hope that's easy enough to follow!

  3. morgothaod thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 26, 2009
    Mal, will that also get rid of Windows 7 thats on my mac?

    I found this youtube video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OfICZMMr0JM (Darik's Boot and Nuke)

    What do you all think about this process for my PCs?
  4. morgothaod thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 26, 2009
    Wow very frustrating...

    I burned Darik's Boot and Nuke to a Cd-R. Then I put it in the Compaq and booted it up (nothing happened). So I went to my computer and clicked on the E: which said Dban. I got this message:

    "The disc in drive E: is not formatted. Do you want to format it now?" [Yes] [No]

    I clicked yes

    "This drive cannot be formatted"

    Now what do I do?
  5. RWil85 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 2, 2010
    take the hard drives out and step on them..

    (not recommended..but, will certainly work like a charm)
  6. aksmax macrumors member

    Nov 26, 2002
    Remember to de-authorize that computer from your iTunes account first. Assuming it's authorized. You're limited to 5 total at one time and the only way to de-authorize a single one is directly from that machine. The option is under the "Store" menu in iTunes.

    You should do this even if your wiping or destroying the drive or even destroying the computer. It's not about someone gaining access to your account, but rather keeping your 5 authorization slots available.

    This applies to replacing a hard drive too. De-authorize before removing the old.
  7. OldSchoolMacGuy macrumors 601


    Jul 10, 2008
    Stepping on them won't do much to a modern hard drive even if you weigh 300lbs. You could disassemble it and break the platters but just stepping on it won't do anything to the sturdy case.
  8. morgothaod thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 26, 2009
    So do I need a CD-RW to put Darik's Boot and Nuke on my Compaq Presario? Or was I supposed to put in a blank cd, format, then put Darik's Boot and Nuke on the CD-R?
  9. Mal macrumors 603


    Jan 6, 2002
    Yes. If you used Boot Camp, be sure then to choose the drive by selecting the entry that indicates the size and model, because that will erase the entire drive, not just the Mac partition.

  10. morgothaod thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 26, 2009
    Can someone help me with this issue? Do I need to buy a CD-RW?
  11. RWil85 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 2, 2010
    certainly a good call..great advice.
  12. morgothaod thread starter macrumors regular

    Aug 26, 2009
    I put the DMOD CD-R in my Mac and this is what I saw:


    Does this mean I have no data on the CD?

    I thought I had data on it so I attempted to use "Burn" to put the .ISO on the disc but when I hit the burn button it ejected my disc. This is the screen I was at:


    Once the disk ejected, this happened:


    So I put the disc back it and it said "Waiting for drive" and then it ejected it again.

    I thought I had this on the CD:


    If you need me to log in Windows 7 I can. If I don't have any data on the CD, maybe I can through CDBurnerXP?
  13. neutrino23 macrumors 68000

    Feb 14, 2003
    SF Bay area

    I would follow the options for securely erasing the drive and also choose the option for erasing free space.

Share This Page