Selling Your Macbook, Macbook Air or Pro? Reset Your System With These Easy Steps


Follow these quick and easy steps to factory reset your Macbook and ensure your data won’t fall into the wrong hands.

Factory resetting your Macbook and other devices is an important task to complete prior to selling or giving them away. This is because all of your devices hold important personal data that can be accessed by someone with the proper knowhow. And while you can simply just wipe out your harddrive and delete all of your files, there are lesser known areas where Macbooks retain information.

While there are a few other things you will want to check before sending your Macbook off, performing a factory reset can take care of clearing out most of the data and information you wouldn’t want falling into the wrong hands. By the end of this article you should have a good understanding of what needs to be done to ensure the safety of your personal data.

The Reset Checklist

Here are a few things that you will want to do prior to performing a system reset. These tasks will help secure your Apple ID account and any other accounts that may be tied to your Macbook.

  • Go into iTunes and deauthorize your Mac.
    • On the menu bar at the top of the screen go to Account, then Authorizations, and then select Deauthorize This Computer.
  • You will want to sign out of any accounts currently signed in such as iMessage, Facetime, and iCloud.
  • Navigate to your Macbook’s System Preferences and then go to Internal Accounts. From there you will see a list of different accounts that have access to your computer. You will want to sign out from these just to make sure that the accounts remain secure and accessible only by you.
  • Reset your NVRAM. The NVRAM is where your computer stores data regardless of whether the computer is on or off. In order to reset your NVRAM, simply restart your Macbook and during startup hold the keys :Option, Command, P, and R for 20 seconds.

How to Factory Reset Your Macbook

Now to get to the real reason you came to this article. Before you go through these steps, it’s highly recommended that you perform a backup of your hard drive, or you at least make sure that all of your important files are saved on another device. Once the Macbook is factory reset there is no way to get back the files that you had on it.

  1. Restart your Macbook and hold all three ⌥⌘R keys, you may also know them as Option, Command, and R. This will launch macOS Recovery which will guide you through the steps of the reset.
  2. Click the Disk Utility Option
  3. Click the top option which should be your startup disk and then click Erase
    • If it won’t let you erase the drive then try clicking on the volume directly beneath it
  4. After clicking Erase you should be able to input a new name for the drive, then choose Mac OS Extended (Journaled) for the type of formatting and GUID Partition Map for the type of scheme.
  5. Click Erase and your drive should erase itself.
  6. Click on Quit Disk Utility to return back to the macOS Recovery window
  7. Click on Reinstall macOS
  8. Make sure your Macbook is plugged in, and then follow the steps as it guides you through reinstalling macOS.
  9. Once the setup is complete, you should be looking at the startup screen of a fresh new Macbook. Hit ⌘Q (Command Q) to quit and power down your Mac.


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