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is there more than one way to strip clean a HD before reloading OSX 10.6.8 operating system

318 Views 7 Replies Latest reply: Jan 11, 2014 8:04 AM by Roger Wilmut1 RSS
SailBoynz Calculating status...
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Jan 8, 2014 2:58 PM

I've had my MacBook's HD emptied and OSX reinstalled twice now in a few weeks by a Mac "reseller" there is no one in the store that has a full knowledge`of mac's they have the orange herd drive that i've seen in Mac shop's, they have the opperating systems to load.

both times it's taken only a few moments to "empty" the hole hard drive, it takes longer to empty 10 items in finder  / Secure Impty Trash than empty the HD

the last reinstall i saw that there 22GB used on the HD there must be things getting stuck in the HD some how and becoming part of the reinstall.

Can anybody tell me, so i can tell them ( in the store )  how to go about getting a clean HD ready to reinnstall  OSX 10.6.8 with out the things that must be hidden so they become part of the new install

MacBook, Mac OS X (10.6.8), 2.4GHz Intel Core 2 Duo 2GB 667 MH
  • Roger Wilmut1 Level 9 Level 9 (64,175 points)

    What they are doing is simply erasing the disk's Directory - the index which tells the computer where all the files actually are. The original files are there, but without the Directory the computer doesn't know about them and so they can be over-written. From the point of view of doing an installation this is perfectly good enough.


    The only reason to erase any more efficiently is for security reasons - if you are going to pass or sell the computer on to someone else you may want to actually erase the files completely. Boot from your install disk and from the Utilities Menu choose Disk Utility. Select the disk in the sidebar, then click 'Erase' in the toolbar. Click 'Security Options' to be offered a range of increasingly thorough erase options in the form of the number or erase passes. A basic level will prevent almost anyone from being able to retrieve your deleted files (it's actually quite difficult even with only a Directory erase). The most powerful should stop even a very determined person from accessing them, but be aware it will take a very long time - possibly some days - and seems hardly necessary.


    But as I say if all you are doing is doing a new install for your own use the Directory erase which has already been done is perfectly satisfactory.

  • Roger Wilmut1 Level 9 Level 9 (64,175 points)

    SailBoynz wrote:


    is it possoble that some files are making it to the "new" HD

    No. The computer can no longer see the files once the Directory has been erased. The only way to access them is from a data recovery method which involves scanning the entire disk and listing these files by examining them - an extremely slow process. I can't say wht you are having the issues you are, but the erase method isn't likely to be the cause - though if you are concerned you could follow the method I gave above for doing a fuller erase, just to satisfy your mind. It may be that the disk itself is beginning to fail. You could download SMART Reporter which can look for possible indications of impeding failure:


    Older free version:


    Or £2.99 in the Mac App Store for the current version:


  • christopher rigby1 Level 4 Level 4 (2,070 points)

    SailBoynz wrote:


    you do a Secure Empty Trash and there   is always 12 files to delete


    This has been a bug since Leopard. When you do a Secure Empty Trash, it completes, but reports - e.g. - 7 items still to delete. Then let's say another time you trash one item and choose Secure Empty Trash, the OS reports that it is deleting - e.g. - 10 items, when there's only one item in the trash! As I say, it's a bug and can be ignored.

  • Roger Wilmut1 Level 9 Level 9 (64,175 points)

    SailBoynz wrote:


    I've had the strangest window come up 10 days ago on a safari web page and  slight black speck back ground  4/5 the full screen is tell you in 6/7 different language's to shut down now by holding the power bottom down

    This is a 'kernel panic' - a major systerm crash. It's usually, though not always, caused by a problem with connected hardware such as an external hard disk, though it can be caused by a serious software bug. If it keeps happening you need to get a competent service facility to look at it.


    22GB doesn't sound unreasonable for the System: when you do an initial install you can expect quite a bit of space to be taken up by the System and any other bundled software.


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