Selling my Mac - is Clear Install OK?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by nl2134, Mar 4, 2008.

  1. nl2134 macrumors member

    Feb 15, 2006
    I'm selling my Mac to upgrade to a MB...

    Is simply reinstalling the OS through Clear Install ok?

    I'm not sure if it's sufficient, but I just want to be secure...

  2. mmcxiiad macrumors 6502

    Jul 19, 2002
    It depends on who you are selling it to. If it is someone you trust, then that is fine. If you are selling it on ebay, then what you posted is not enough.

    After you boot to the install disc, you can click on the utilities at the top. This is right before before you install it. Click on the utilities menu and then disk Utility. From here you can format the hard drive. Do the 7 times secure wipe. This will take a LONG time - plan on 24 hours. When it is done close the disk utility and finish the installation.

    While it takes a long time, it makes it nearly impossible for someone to salvage any of your data from the hard drive.
  3. nl2134 thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 15, 2006
    Hmm thanks.

    I'm selling it to someone on craigslist...

    Would people really try and get into my old information if I just did clean install?

    I mean, I know there are some crazy people in this world, but I'm wondering if they would really go through all this just to get a few bits of information...

    I'm just wondering if waiting 24 hours for a clean wipe is worth it...sorry for my ignorance, but I'm just curious...
  4. mmcxiiad macrumors 6502

    Jul 19, 2002
    You are free to do what you are comfortable with. I have sold a lot of computers on ebay. There is NO way I would sell it with out wiping it. If you just do the strait install, it takes very little effort to get everything back from your hard drive using filesalvge. Yes that is email, keychain, photos, documents... everything. Granted, they would need your password to access your keychain, but everything else is very easy to get to.

    So you have to ask yourself this... is it worth it? Personally, I think that the 24 hour delay is easier to deal with then the what if. Do yourself a favor, do the secure wipe.
  5. kuebby macrumors 68000


    Jan 18, 2007
    Why not do it? It costs you nothing and protects your priceless personal information.
  6. mmcxiiad macrumors 6502

    Jul 19, 2002
    exactly - all you need is someone to get at one file. a confidential document, a photo or video, bank records... who knows what it could be. I am not implying that you have anything that you shouldn't - you just wouldn't belive what you can find on a hard drive.

    Case and point. I purchased a used dell server on ebay. when it came it had a company's entire active directory on it with the user name and password taped to the top. when i turned it on i couldn't belive my eyes. Personally i am not the type to do anything with it. I just formated it and started using it for my needs. But not everyone may have done that.

    As was just said - why take that risk?
  7. nl2134 thread starter macrumors member

    Feb 15, 2006

    You're right...what do I have to lose anyways?
  8. Amdahl macrumors 65816

    Jul 28, 2004
    You don't necessarily have to do the 7-times secure wipe. Just doing the zero-out single pass is going to stop anybody except intelligence or a recovery lab. Someone can feel free to correct me if they know of an off-the-shelf way to recover overwritten data.
  9. MacFanBoyIIe macrumors 6502

    Feb 22, 2008
    Oh boy...why open that can of corn? And who cares? Just spend a day doing a 7-pass DOD spec wipe and call it good. That way he's protected no matter WHO gets a hold of it.
  10. Amdahl macrumors 65816

    Jul 28, 2004
    If you care so much, don't sell the hard drive. That's all... This obsession with 7 or 35-pass wipes strikes me as the same paranoia you see/saw with defragmenting. If you really care, why are you selling the drive in the first place? Burn it, shred it, kill it. That's what people with Real Secrets do.
  11. MacFanBoyIIe macrumors 6502

    Feb 22, 2008
    OK Amdahl....enough with the conspiracy theory.

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