Macbook Air Restore Drive - How To Format?

AbSoluTc

macrumors 601
Original poster
Sep 21, 2008
4,332
2,611
Is it possible to format the restore drive/disc that comes with the new Air's?
 

idonotliketostu

macrumors 6502
Feb 28, 2008
398
0
Try disk utility app. I think you should make a copy of the software on the usb first with disk utilities before formatting it.
 

AbSoluTc

macrumors 601
Original poster
Sep 21, 2008
4,332
2,611
I have a copy of the drive. However, I am reading Apples info on the drive and they state it's READ ONLY and it cannot be reformated or anything else. That's crappy.
 

idonotliketostu

macrumors 6502
Feb 28, 2008
398
0
When you mean infos, do you mean when you right click on the disk (on the desktop) and "get info"?

Unless they are using a proprietary USB hardware/software you should definitely be able to erase/format/partition in the disk utilities app.
 

AbSoluTc

macrumors 601
Original poster
Sep 21, 2008
4,332
2,611
When you mean infos, do you mean when you right click on the disk (on the desktop) and "get info"?

Unless they are using a proprietary USB hardware/software you should definitely be able to erase/format/partition in the disk utilities app.
Get Info and Disk Utilities - won't erase it. My Windows machine won't touch it either. Apple states it is read only. I think that is very wasteful in the long run. So, you update your air to Lion and the drive is now useless.
 

DannySmurf

macrumors 6502a
Jul 7, 2005
628
0
Get Info and Disk Utilities - won't erase it. My Windows machine won't touch it either. Apple states it is read only. I think that is very wasteful in the long run. So, you update your air to Lion and the drive is now useless.
When you upgrade any Mac to the newest OS, the old DVD that came with it is pretty much useless. How is this different?
 

AbSoluTc

macrumors 601
Original poster
Sep 21, 2008
4,332
2,611
When you upgrade any Mac to the newest OS, the old DVD that came with it is pretty much useless. How is this different?
It's a write once medium and I would expect it to be. However, the usb drive can be read/write. It's NOT forward thinking. It's land fill, filler now.
 

Fissure

macrumors 6502
Jul 28, 2010
294
8
When you upgrade any Mac to the newest OS, the old DVD that came with it is pretty much useless. How is this different?
Because the "old" DVD is read only and Flash Drives generally aren't. Meaning why waste a 8GB Flash Drive by making it not re-usable when Lion comes out or for anything else for that matter.
 

diablo2112

macrumors 6502
Apr 16, 2010
348
0
Pretty silly comment. The advantages of making the USB drive FAR outweigh any disadvantage in being able to overwrite the data. What does a 4GB USB stick cost today? $10? Given the critical nature of the software on the Apple-supplied USB, why risk overwriting it? Apple maintains configuration-control over the stick as read-only. Consider the security risk if you could overwrite this file?
 

hfg

macrumors 68040
Dec 1, 2006
3,566
276
Cedar Rapids, IA. USA
I had assumed it was probably made with a low cost ROM or EPROM media rather than expensive Flash. That is effectively no different than the distribution DVD media vs. DVD-RW. Yes, you can't update the media, but most users probably wouldn't do that anyway.

You can always make your own current OS install USB drive. I do that anyway from DVDs, since USB drives are so easy to carry along in case something happens mid-trip and restoring the base level OS is the only salvation.

-howard
 

DannySmurf

macrumors 6502a
Jul 7, 2005
628
0
Because the "old" DVD is read only and Flash Drives generally aren't. Meaning why waste a 8GB Flash Drive by making it not re-usable when Lion comes out or for anything else for that matter.
... so every recovery DVD is a wasted 9.7GB because it's a recordable disc instead of a rewritable disc?

There is ZERO difference between this and the recovery DVDs that have always been shipped with Macs. Except, of course, that a USB drive is smaller and results in less wasted plastic.

Seems like you're just looking for something to complain about.
 

bcaslis

macrumors 68020
Mar 11, 2008
2,164
188
It's a write once medium and I would expect it to be. However, the usb drive can be read/write. It's NOT forward thinking. It's land fill, filler now.
Why on earth do you want to erase this? You will need for reinstallation of the OS and iLife. If you have a copy fine, but it's read only for a reason. The same way that the restore DVDs with other Macs are read only.
 

tivoboy

macrumors 68040
May 15, 2005
3,069
194
ilife

I dont' want ilife on my air, but would rather put it on my MBP. Is there any way to do this with the restore USB stick?
 

AbSoluTc

macrumors 601
Original poster
Sep 21, 2008
4,332
2,611
1 - I don't have a MacBook air. I have only the 8 gig restore disc.

2 - You CANNOT install iLife that comes on the restore disc onto any other machine except for the machine it was made for (MacBook Air). It won't work.



It just seems wasteful to not be able to reuse the usb drive honestly. Is Apple going to ship out new usb drives to all the Air users to update them to Lion when it comes out? How does that work?
 

paepcke

macrumors member
Nov 9, 2008
37
0
It just seems wasteful to not be able to reuse the usb drive honestly. Is Apple going to ship out new usb drives to all the Air users to update them to Lion when it comes out? How does that work?
Why should they ship out new usb drives to all Air users? Do they ship out new CD´s to all MB/MBP/iMac/Pro Users every time they update the OS?

No. Let´s see. How hard can it be to predict the options that users will have when they BUY the Lion update? Yes, maybe they can choose between CD or USB Key (and hopfully AppStore online).
 

paepcke

macrumors member
Nov 9, 2008
37
0
Maybe the flash in it is really really cheap and doesn't have that may write cycles
Yes,
there are a lot of possibilities, including that this is only pure cheap ROM (read only memory) or maybe it is rewritable (but with limited write cycles as you stated) and can be only updated by an special DRM tool from the AppStore.
 

Corndog5595

macrumors 65816
Jul 16, 2010
1,111
0
Get Info and Disk Utilities - won't erase it. My Windows machine won't touch it either. Apple states it is read only. I think that is very wasteful in the long run. So, you update your air to Lion and the drive is now useless.
Every DVD you buy or burn is Read Only (after it is written). This is a restore disk. They are just preventing people from:
1.) Patching the install (think Hackintosh)
2.) Accidentally formatting the drive
 

bcaslis

macrumors 68020
Mar 11, 2008
2,164
188
1 - I don't have a MacBook air. I have only the 8 gig restore disc.

2 - You CANNOT install iLife that comes on the restore disc onto any other machine except for the machine it was made for (MacBook Air). It won't work.



It just seems wasteful to not be able to reuse the usb drive honestly. Is Apple going to ship out new usb drives to all the Air users to update them to Lion when it comes out? How does that work?
How did you get the USB stick if you don't have the MBA? It only comes with it. If you look at it you'll see it's not a normal flash drive. It's probably ROM, just the the DVDs that ship with Macs.

Silliest thread I've ever seen.
 

AbSoluTc

macrumors 601
Original poster
Sep 21, 2008
4,332
2,611
Some of you are wound a wee bit tight. No need to jump down someone's throat here. It was a simple question.

Lots of good views on the matter that make sense that I did not think of. IE - ROM. Which would make writing to it over and over again impossible.

What's interesting though, we have micro SD cards that are 8gig + that can be read/written to that are just as small as the USB drive Apple ships. I guess they locked it to prevent accidental deletion of the restore disc. Make sense.

Anyways - question answered.
 

AbSoluTc

macrumors 601
Original poster
Sep 21, 2008
4,332
2,611
Thanks for the info. Follow the instructions and it only took a couple of minutes. I now have a read/write Apple usb drive. It's fast as hell too.
 

tivoboy

macrumors 68040
May 15, 2005
3,069
194
ilife

anyone know how to get the ilife install to work for another machine? I took it OFF my MBA11 13" but would like to put it ON my MBP.