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How to erase from disk utilities when it is grayed out?

726 Views 1 Reply Latest reply: Feb 29, 2012 3:54 PM by old comm guy RSS
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Feb 29, 2012 12:16 PM

HELP! I am trying to wipe my powerbook G4 as I have just sold it, and of course replaced it with a new Mac.

When I try to follow directions to erase, all the information that is supposed to be visible is grayed out and I am unable to do anything.


In other words, when I click on a volume to erase, then click the erase tab, all information that I think that I need to address, is grayed out. It is supposed to give me a list of things that I need to erase for security.

I have read that I am supposed to do this:

Set the format type to Mac OS Extended (Journaled) then click on the Options button.  Select the one pass Zero Data option and click on the OK button.  Then click on the Erase button.This sentence does not work on my computer.It is all grayed out.




Can anyone help with this?


Thanking you in advance,



PowerBook, Mac OS X (10.2.x)
  • old comm guy Level 4 Level 4 (2,230 points)

    Sounds like you are trying to erase the volume from which you have booted, which Disk Utility will not do.  You need to boot from another disc, like the install/restore CD or DVD, then run Disk Utility from that disc and do the erase.


    You can also put your machine into Target Disc mode by booting it and holding down the T key until you get a blue screen with a floating Ethernet icon, at which time you can connect via Firewire to another Mac and the disc will show up as an external volume (or volumes, if it is partitioned) and then use Disk Utility on the host to erase the disc.

    TiBook G4 1GHz/ G5 2 GHz DP GF Ultra 6800, Mac OS X (10.4.11)


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