Forum Question: Wiping MacBook Pro With Mountain Lion for Resale

Hi. I’m selling on my 13′ MacBook Pro and was wondering how I go about safely wiping all data and doing a fresh install of Mountain Lion. I’ve watched Episode 553 about this but it only covers up to Snow Leopard and the Mac I’m selling has been upgraded to ML, so theres no DVD as it was downloaded from the App Store. I’d be gratfeul of information of how to go about this and be confident the new owner cannot recover any of my data after selling.
PS I still have the DVD’s for Leopard and Snow Leopard if I have to bacdkdate the Machine to one of those OS before selling but would rather sell with Mountain Lion.
Thanks
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Fin Maciver

Comments: 5 Responses to “Wiping MacBook Pro With Mountain Lion for Resale”

    11/12/12 @ 7:56 pm

    Since you still have the original DVDs that came with the Mac, one way you could go is to install them. So you are essentially restoring the Mac to its original condition. If that original OS was Snow Leopard, then it puts the new owner in a good spot because they can just buy Mountain Lion for $10 themselves. And then they “own” Mountain Lion.
    But if you want you can erase the drive and restore it to Mountain Lion. The way to do that is to boot into the restore partition. Do that by restarting the Mac, holding down Command+R while it boots, and then you’ll get into the restore software.
    From there you can use Disk Utility to erase the drive. Not sure of the exact steps, but after erasing you can then reinstall Mountain Lion on to the now empty drive. It is all done online and using the tiny restore partition that is separate from the main drive partition.
    I’m not 100% sure what happens then as I have never tried it. Technically you are getting Mountain Lion on that Mac — the Mountain Lion install that you purchased for $10. But is that linked to your Apple ID? Maybe. Maybe not.
    I guess the thing to do would be to check to see if your ID is anywhere in the settings in any way.

    Finlay Maciver
    11/13/12 @ 9:23 am

    Hi Gary. Thanks for your reply.
    I tried the Cmd R thing on reboot but it wont let me erase the drive, I get the message, “Secure Disk Erase failed with the error: Couldn’t unmount disk”
    Would the “Reinstall OS X” option in OS X Utilities suffice in wiping the drive?
    Cheers

      11/13/12 @ 10:43 am

      That’s odd. Not sure why it wouldn’t work. Try your idea. Since you are done with the machine, and can always just install Snow Leopard from the discs if something goes very wrong, then this is a good chance to experiment.

    Michael A.
    11/14/12 @ 12:59 pm

    Finlay, one possible reason for the error you got is that you were trying to erase the whole disk, including the recovery partition. Make sure you’re only erasing the main partition.

    Finlay Maciver
    11/14/12 @ 7:09 pm

    Hi. I went with your suggestion of a 7 pass erase and reinstall of SL from the DVD. That way I know its safe and the new owner will be able to upgrade as they see fit without it being tied to another Apple ID, which I think would have been the case had I reinstalled ML.
    Michael A, I hear what you’re saying but I dont recall seeing that option, I may be mistaken but its sorted now anyway, thanks for the reply.
    Cheers

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