Reformatting and Viruses

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by theturtle, Jun 10, 2011.

  1. theturtle macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    #1
    Hey guys, another bone head questions.

    I made a thread today regarding macro viruses affecting MS office. Instead of installing a anti virus software, i choose to go to the extremes of just reformatting my computer. I'll start new and fresh. My question is, if i did the 7 pass erase, will the macro (they say its harmless but still..) virus totally be eradicated? If not, restoring via 7 pass would have been a waste of time!

    Also, wiping an a HD that was previously used for mac os, does not require the disk utility/partition method when reformatting correct? I remember reading that you should use use those steps when you have a brand new HD thats never been formatted. when you use the erase/7 pass method (and not the partition method) will the drive already be set up with the GUID partition table?
     
  2. Kyzelios macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    Location:
    Canada
    #2
    In my opinion, performing a 7 pass erase on your hard disk is overkill in this situation; even simply erasing the volume in question and reinstalling Mac OS X would have taken care of the issue.

    That being said, if you want to erase your entire disk (which will perform a single zero fill of the entire disk) and start over you can do so by performing the following steps:

    IMPORTANT: The following instructions will erase all data contained on your computers internal hard disk, or whichever disk you specify. Proceed with caution.

    1. Start your Mac from the disc labelled "Mac OS X Install DVD".
    2. Choose the appropriate language and click on the arrow button to proceed.
    3. From the menu bar, choose "Utilities" and then choose "Terminal".
    4. Type diskutil list, which will list all of the disks connected to your Mac (NOTE: your MacBook Pro's internal drive is usually labelled as "disk0").
    5. Type diskutil zeroDisk disk0, then press Enter (where disk0 is the name for the disk you wish to erase.)
    You will see a progress indicator informing you of how far along the process is. Once it has completed, quit the Terminal application.

    Now open Disk Utility from the Utilities menu. Select your MacBook Pro's internal disk on the left hand side, click on the Erase tab, then choose Mac OS Extended (Journaled) and type a name for the volume, then click on Erase.

    Once you've initialized your disk you can proceed with installing Mac OS X by quitting Disk Utility and following the on-screen instructions.
     
  3. theturtle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    #3
    Ahhh frick! I wish you told me that before I started. It's currently an hour into the seven pass erase. Do you think it'll get as thorough as a erase as the method you listed above?

    I had to use the erase method instead of partition/one partition/guid/apply/erase because my hard drive name was already listed on the side. I assumed that If I did that partition method I would end up with two. The new one and my old one. Seemed a bot confusing. My research also told me that people only use the partition method if they want more than 1 partition and that the erase method would suffice for the people who just wanted one partition anyways. Ah the confusion!!

    Btw. Off topic. But do you go about reformatting the momentus xt the same way u format any old hard drive or do you have to do it in a special way because of NAND memory built in.


    Thank u macrumors!!!!!
     
  4. Kyzelios macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    Location:
    Canada
    #4
    You should be able to cancel the 7-pass erase operation and then proceed to format the disk using the instructions listed earlier without any issues. In a case like this it's just as thorough as performing a 7-pass erase as you are writing zeros to the entire disk, which removes the partition table and any data that was stored on the disk.

    The only time I recommend a 7-pass erase is if you have sensitive data on your computer and you are selling the computer to someone else to ensure that the new owner can't recover any old data.

    As for the Momentus XT, I'm not 100% sure but I'd imagine you should be able to format it in the same way that you would with any other disk as the flash memory portion is essentially controlled by the disks firmware. Someone else who owns one of these drives may be able to provide a better answer.
     
  5. theturtle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    #5
    thank u very much!!

    stupid question but, when i put in my snow leopard disk and i click optional installs, i see the option to install ichat, address book, etc etc. but the weird thing is, it says that if i continue with the upgrade, i'll be "upgrading" the apps, which is weird because those programs are already installed when i installed snow leopard. so why doesn't it say "skip" rather than "upgrade"? Will i really be upgrading the apps if i continue with the optional installs?
     
  6. snaky69, Jun 11, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 11, 2011

    snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #6
    Why are you reformatting in the first place? There are no viruses in the wild for OS X, malware yes, but not viruses.

    Which in turn would make reformatting for the fear of viruses useless and time consuming.
     
  7. Kyzelios macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    Location:
    Canada
    #7
    The "Optional Installs" package contains applications that are available during the installation of Mac OS X, so if you selected to customize your installation and unselected an option you can add it later. The "upgrade" option is appearing because those applications are already installed on your Mac.

    If you're looking to install the iLife applications that came with your Mac (iPhoto, iMovie, GarageBand, etc.) you can do so by using the second disc that came with your Mac which is labelled as "Applications Install Disc". Simply load it into your SuperDrive, and from the Finder window that appears double click on "Install Bundled Applications", then follow the on-screen instructions.
     
  8. theturtle thread starter macrumors 6502a

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    Aug 3, 2009
    #8
    so if i choose to do the "upgrade" method, i actually won't be upgrading the applications right? it'll be the same version number?
     
  9. Kyzelios macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Mar 6, 2011
    Location:
    Canada
    #9
    It would replace the applications that are already installed. If you've installed any software updates such as the latest available update for Mac OS X (at the time of writing, this would be 10.6.7) then running through the "Optional Installs" package may actually cause those applications to be "downgraded" to an older version not compatible with the version of Mac OS X you are running (one good example of this is the Mail application).

    If you do decide to run through with the upgrade process, make sure that you install the latest update (combo) for Mac OS X. This can be found at http://support.apple.com/kb/DL1361 for 10.6.7.
     
  10. theturtle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    #10
    i had that stupid macro virus in office :(

    wanted to fully get rid of it. all the directions i read talked about downloading a anti virus software, which i really didn't want to do. i decided to just fully restore and not install office.
     
  11. snaky69 macrumors 603

    Joined:
    Mar 14, 2008
    #11
    I was under the impression that macros were not enabled in the OS X version of Office, how could you have gotten that virus?
     
  12. theturtle thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2009
    #12
    i guessing a bad template download. kept getting the "word could not fire event" while writing my resume. also gave it to me during the default calendar templates.
     

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