Tips for a new (used) rMBP owner

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by Northoceanbeach, May 14, 2014.

  1. Northoceanbeach macrumors newbie

    May 14, 2014
    Hi, I bought what is only the second computer I have ever owned, and I am struggling to get caught up on technology. I do learn quickly though and will be putting a lot of work into this.

    My primary use will be photo editing. My secondary use will be to use a program called openCPN which is a newish boat navigation program.

    So first things first. I just bought a used retina macbook. It appears to be in excellent condition, the seller was a very nice professional graphic designer and there isn't a scratch on it. He even had the box and receipt. But still. I don't know him personally so here are my questions.

    First off, I am a mildly paranoid person, and one reason I went with Macintosh is for better security. Just since you never know with strangers, is there anything I need to do before I connect the new macbook online. Say, I was reading through a photo blogger's website while researching what macbook would fit my needs. Well, his had gotten stolen. He had put a program on there that let him spy on the thieves through the camera and remotely access his computer.

    I wouldn't want to be spied on, nor would I like someone to have remote access to my computer. I don't have any personal information on there now, so what, if anything, should I do to make sure the computer is clean of any malware and to make sure no one has remote access?

    What kind of anti virus/anti malware program(s) should I get, free or paid?

    Is there anything else I should check or do? I think it's just over a year old, is there any way I can check? If it were less than, I doubt it, but would consider apple care.

    What about any registration that I need to do? I don't think apple keeps a record of stolen computers, but is there anywhere that I should register it so if someday it gets lost or stolen I have an easier time recovering? Is there any of those find my mac programs or apps that I should have? Thanks. I'm sorry there are so many questions at once.
  2. andyp350 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 14, 2011
    You may be better off just reinstalling the whole system with a fresh copy of OSX
  3. Northoceanbeach thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 14, 2014
    The previous owner said he did that. It appears to be empty. There's no pictures or files or anything.
  4. marddin macrumors 6502

    Mar 11, 2009
    You weren't joking about being highly paranoid, ha!

    I wouldn't worry at all if its already been wiped. If it makes you feel better, reformat the hard drive and re-install mavericks.

    But seriously, I think you will be okay.
  5. andyp350 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 14, 2011
    If you're worried about the previous owner putting software on to spy on you then doing it yourself will give you more peace of mind as you'll know it's definitely a new installation, although that's not something I would personally worry about.

    I can't really advise you on antivirus software for OSX as it's not something I've ever bothered with but I'm sure others here will have some suggestions.

    To register it go to, log in with your Apple ID, choose Add Product and type the MacBook Pro's serial number.
  6. Weaselboy Moderator


    Staff Member

    Jan 23, 2005
    If you want to get it back to how it was from the factory you can use Internet recovery to erase the drive and reinstall the OS. Here is what you do:

    Hold command-option-r (all three at once) when booting. You will be asked for your wifi password then you will see a spinning globe while the recovery utility downloads Then you will see this screen.


    From there launch Disk Utility and go to the erase tab then select the drive itself at the very top on the left above Macintosh HD. Choose Mac OS Extended (Journaled) as the format type then click erase.

    Now quit Disk Utility and click reinstall OS X at the top. This will download and install the OS X version that came with the Mac (likely Mountain Lion). It takes a bit as the download is 4.7GB.

    At the end after the machine restarts you will get a setup wizard when you select language and time zone etc. then setup an account for yourself.

    This will give you a Mac with the original OS and your empty account on there and nothing else. From there you can open the App Store app and create an AppleID then "purchase" the free Mavericks upgrade if you like and download and install that.

    Virus's are not much of a concern on Macs, but there is some malware out there. If you would like to run an AV program the free ClamXAV is popular.

    You also should setup a free, Apple iCloud account. It includes a featured called Find my Mac that can be used to track and lock down your Mac if it is stolen.
  7. Northoceanbeach thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 14, 2014
    Haha. No. I'm really not that paranoid I hope. I probably made myself sound worse than I really am. I just try to take good care of things and I think sometimes the worst damage can be caused through ignorance.

    For example, when I got my new digital camera, the first thing my friend did when I showed her was remove the cover that protects the image sensor and ask what's that? Now, I took it away and explained and nothing happened, but if she had touched it or scratched it it would have ruined the camera. She didn't know how delicate it was.

    Or my mom shuts down her laptop every time she uses it, even if she's going to use it a half hour later. Can't convince her it's ok to leave it on

    So I don't want to be the guy that ignorantly gets into the habit of treating my laptop poorly, I'm sure there are things that you guys do and it's just a matter of course, but to not really have much laptop've got to put yourself in my shoes. There's so many stories and stuff online about scams and just don't know if it's sensationalism or not.
  8. andyp350 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 14, 2011
    If she doesn't mind waiting for it to boot back up then it's better to shut it down, you don't leave your car running while you pop in to do your shopping do you?
  9. Northoceanbeach thread starter macrumors newbie

    May 14, 2014
  10. andyp350 macrumors 6502a

    Aug 14, 2011
    They are but there's certainly nothing wrong with shutting down if you want to. If a computers left running 24/7 it's probably not going to last as long as one that's shut down when it's not being used, especially if they have a HDD

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