How to Wipe MacBook Pro

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How to Wipe MacBook Pro – Before You Start

If you plan to sell your MacBook Pro, trade it in, or pass it on to family or friends, it’s wise to wipe the MacBook and restore it to factory settings first.

This measure ensures your information remains secure and prevents future issues arising from not disconnecting the MacBook from various services and software you may have used. Additionally, it allows a new user to start the MacBook as if it were new.

Remember, merely removing your information isn’t sufficient if someone else will be using your MacBook afterward; you also need to ensure that a functioning version of macOS is installed afterward.

Another reason to wipe your MacBook could be to perform a clean installation of macOS. This can be an effective way to address issues if your MacBook is behaving erratically.

Wiping a malfunctioning MacBook allows you to set it up as new, potentially resolving software-related problems.

Which Kind of Storage Drive is in your MacBook

Before discussing how to wipe a MacBook, it’s important to determine whether you have an HDD or an SSD in your MacBook. In 2010, Apple began incorporating SSDs in its computing devices, though its desktops still offer the choice between HDD or SSD.

Additionally, Apple provides MacBooks with Flash SSDs, which are hybrids of HDD and SSD. If you purchased your MacBook before 2010 or have a Mac desktop, there’s a significant chance it might be equipped with an HDD.

To determine whether your MacBook has an HDD or SSD, click on the Apple logo and then ‘About this Mac.’ Next, click on the ‘Storage’ tab to see the storage drive type in your MacBook Pro.

Our first example features a MacBook with an HDD (hard disk drive).

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

Our second example showcases a MacBook with an SSD (solid-state drive).

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

Our third example highlights a MacBook with a Flash SSD.

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

Make a Backup Before Wiping your MacBook Pro

It’s crucial to back up your MacBook Pro’s storage drive before wiping it, whether you’re erasing the disk to start fresh or selling it but want to keep your files for your new PC.

Here’s how to create a backup using Apple’s ‘Time Machine’:

  1. Connect an external storage drive.
  2. Click on the Apple logo at the top-left corner of your MacBook Pro screen.
  3. Select ‘System Preferences.’
  4. Choose ‘Time Machine.’

  1. Select ‘Select Backup Disk.’

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

  1. Choose your external drive, click ‘Encrypt Backups,’ and then select ‘Use Disk.’

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

The MacBook Pro Wiping Process

Backup Your Files

As shown above, regularly back up your MacBook Pro using ‘Time Machine’ or another third-party solution. By using ‘Time Machine,’ you can restore your files on a new MacBook during the setup process.

Sign Out of iCloud

  1. Click on the Apple logo at the upper left corner of your screen.
  2. Select ‘System Preferences.’
  3. Choose ‘iCloud.’

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

  1. Select ‘Overview’ in the sidebar, then click ‘Sign Out.’

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

Enter Recovery Mode

As Apple transitions its MacBook lineup from Intel-based processors to Apple M1 chips, entering recovery mode has become a critical step in resetting a MacBook. The procedure differs between Intel-based MacBooks and M1 MacBooks.

Erase the Machine

Whether you have an Intel-based MacBook Pro or an M1 MacBook Pro, you’re ready to complete the wiping process using the ‘Disk Utility’ function. Log into the subsequent screen with admin privileges if prompted.

  1. Select ‘Disk Utility’ on the macOS recovery screen.

  1. Choose ‘Macintosh HD’ on the left side of your screen.

  1. A dialogue box will appear, prompting you to rename the storage drive and format. Retain the name ‘Macintosh HD’ and set the format to ‘APFS’ or ‘Mac OS Extended.’
How to Wipe MacBook Pro

How to Wipe MacBook Pro

Note: After wiping your MacBook Pro, you can reinstall macOS by following the prompts on your screen after the device restarts. Once the machine finishes installing a new macOS version, you can shut it down and hand it over to the new owner.

Final Thought

Now you know how to wipe a MacBook Pro. If you reinstall macOS, return to the recovery screen and select the ‘Restore from Time Machine Backup’ option. Choose the appropriate backup from the list to reinstall your saved files.

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