Selling Mac Mini - factory restore?

Discussion in 'Mac mini' started by test13, Dec 12, 2016.

  1. test13 macrumors newbie

    Dec 12, 2016

    The company I work for has decided to get rid of the Mac Mini that has been sitting in the server room for 6 years. Because I am the IT person I have been asked to prepare it for sale but I know almost nothing about the mac.

    I would like to do a factory restore (which I am pretty sure I could do without your help) but the mac mini shipped with iOS 9 and was upgraded to iOS 10. I don't know where the iOS 10 disk (i there is one) or the licence (again if there is one) is so I am worried that if I do a factory restore I will lose iOS 10 and have to sell the mac mini with the lesser iOS 9.

    If I do a factory restore will I lose iOS 10?
    Is there a way to recover the iOS 10 licence details?

  2. keysofanxiety, Dec 12, 2016
    Last edited: Dec 12, 2016

    keysofanxiety macrumors G3


    Nov 23, 2011
    iOS is the operating system on the phones/tablets. :)

    If you're running 10.7 or later, you can hold CMD + R on startup to boot into the Recovery OS. Then erase the disk volume through Disk Utility. It's normally called Macintosh HD by default and you'll need to select the bottom of the two partitions (indented), as the top of the two partitions is the entire hard disk and that can't be wiped due to having the recovery OS on it.

    Once that's done, close Disk Utility and select Reinstall OS X/macOS. Set it to install on the newly formatted volume. You won't need to worry about a licence key. It's not Windows! There's no activation. The only thing it may do is prompt you to sign in with an Apple ID, that has had the OS already downloaded through it. However this is only for verification purposes and it will not link the OS to it in any way or retain those details.

    Then you're good to go!

    You can also run through the same instructions above on 10.7+ by booting into Internet Recovery (hold CMD + Alt/Option + R on startup).
  3. test13 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 12, 2016
    Thanks. The iOS/OSX thing was a rookie mistake.

    Does this apply if to OS X version 10.6.8?
  4. Kaida macrumors regular


    May 28, 2016
    just download the latest OS X/macOS from the app store. put it on a USB and boot up from it. Secure erase the SSD/HDD in the disk utility and install the OS from the USB.
  5. CoastalOR macrumors 68020


    Jan 19, 2015
    Oregon, USA
  6. test13 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 12, 2016
    Thanks CoastalOR.
    There is only one partition called Macintosh HD, there does not seem to be a recovery partition. There is also no option to Reinstall OS X/macOS.
    --- Post Merged, Dec 13, 2016 ---
    I tried working through but I suspect it is for a newer version on the OS than I have.
  7. bcave098 macrumors 6502a


    Sep 6, 2015
    Northern British Columbia
    For 10.6.8, you need the install DVD that came with the computer. Or upgrade to El Capitan and then use its recovery partition.
  8. test13 thread starter macrumors newbie

    Dec 12, 2016
  9. fischersd macrumors 601


    Oct 23, 2014
    Vancouver, BC, Canada
    Hopefully you already thought of this - but was there actually any company data on the internal hard drive of the mini?
    If it solely contained the OS and some apps, but all data was resident elsewhere (external enclosures, for example), then you're fine. But, if not, you really should be doing a random fill, multiple times on that drive to make sure none of the company data can be recovered by unscrupulous folks.

    A few that you can make bootable CD/DVD's of here:

    Then just put a fresh load of OSX on it so the new owner is good to go.

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