Selling my computer, wipe or just reinstall?

SpookTheHamster

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Nov 7, 2004
1,489
0
London
I just sold my iMac and I'm going to install OS X for the new owner. Is it worth using the disc utility to completely write over the drive, or should I just reinstall OS X?
 

CanadaRAM

macrumors G5
Depends, of course, what's on it and what your tolerance for risk is.

If you have any other person's private data on it -- such as club or society member address lists, or personal financial data from any business you have done, you may be obliged by privacy legislation to wipe and overwrite it.
 

MK2007

macrumors regular
Aug 31, 2007
121
0
More than 1 or 2 passes is pointless, from what I hear.
1 or 2 passes is more than enough. Someone who buys a computer isn't the type that plans to hack old data from your period of ownership. Retrieving data from the former owner occurs most often with stolen computers.

Even if you did nothing and just re-installed OS X, it might won't matter because the new owner will probably create new files that overwrite everything you did anyway.

I myself have sold several Macs. Before shipping them to their new owners I only wiped the drive during the re-installation of OS X. I didn't bother with 1 or 2 passes to cleanse the drive, and I have never had any problems. Like I said, someone who buys your machine wants to use it, not hack your old files.
 

trainguy77

macrumors 68040
Nov 13, 2003
3,571
1
1 or 2 passes is more than enough. Someone who buys a computer isn't the type that plans to hack old data from your period of ownership. Retrieving data from the former owner occurs most often with stolen computers.

Even if you did nothing and just re-installed OS X, it might won't matter because the new owner will probably create new files that overwrite everything you did anyway.

I myself have sold several Macs. Before shipping them to their new owners I only wiped the drive during the re-installation of OS X. I didn't bother with 1 or 2 passes to cleanse the drive, and I have never had any problems. Like I said, someone who buys your machine wants to use it, not hack your old files.
But just to be on the safe side a 1 pass would be good....otherwise its EASY to get data off of it. Atleast a 1 pass makes it harder.
 

SpookTheHamster

macrumors 65816
Original poster
Nov 7, 2004
1,489
0
London
I zero'd it. I thought it would take longer than it did and I was in hurry, but it only took about half an hour.