10 Replies Latest reply: Jun 11, 2013 12:37 PM by Kappy
Wooky Level 1 (0 points)

I am trying to reset my MBP back to factory setting without no personal information so that I can pass this to someone else. I installed OS X ML after I purchase this laptop and was wondering if I can do this without the disk... never a disk for ML anyway.

MacBook Pro (17-inch Mid 2010), OS X Mountain Lion (10.8.1)
  • Kappy Level 10 (265,883 points)

    Follow these instructions step by step to prepare a Mac for sale:


    Step One - Back up your data:


           A. If you have any Virtual PCs shut them down. They cannot be in their "fast saved" state. They must be shut down from inside Windows.

           B. Clone to an external drive using using Carbon Copy Cloner.


              1. Open Carbon Copy Cloner.

              2. Select the Source volume from the Select a source drop down menu on the left side.

              3. Select the Destination volume from the Select a destination drop down menu on the right


              4. Click on the Clone button. If you are prompted about creating a clone of the Recovery HD be

                  sure to opt for that.


                   Destination means a freshly erased external backup drive. Source means the internal

                   startup drive.


    Step Two - Prepare the machine for the new buyer:


              1. De-authorize the computer in iTunes! De-authorize both iTunes and Audible accounts.

              2, Remove any Open Firmware passwords or Firmware passwords.

              3. Turn the brightness full up and volume nearly so.

              4. Turn off File Vault, if enabled.

              5. Disable iCloud, if enabled: See.What to do with iCloud before selling your computer


    Step Three - Install a fresh OS:


         A. Snow Leopard and earlier versions of OS X


              1. Insert the original OS X install CD/DVD that came with your computer.

              2. Restart the computer while holding down the C key to boot from the CD/DVD.

              3. Select Disk Utility from the Utilities menu; repartition and reformat the internal hard drive.

                  Optionally, click on the Security button and set the Zero Data option to one-pass.

              4. Install OS X.

              5. Upon completion DO NOT restart the computer.

              6. Shutdown the computer.


         B. Lion and Mountain Lion (if pre-installed on the computer at purchase*)


             Note: You will need an active Internet connection. I suggest using Ethernet if possible because

                       it is three times faster than wireless.


              1. Restart the computer while holding down the COMMAND and R keys until the Mac OS X

                  Utilities window appears.

              2. Select Disk Utility from the Mac OS X Utilities window and click on the Continue button.

              3. After DU loads select your startup volume (usually Macintosh HD) from the left side list. Click

                  on the Erase tab in the DU main window.

              4. Set the format type to Mac OS Extended (Journaled.) Optionally, click on the Security button

                  and set the Zero Data option to one-pass.

              5. Click on the Erase button and wait until the process has completed.

              6. Quit DU and return to the Mac OS X Utilities window.

              7. Select Reinstall Lion/Mountain Lion and click on the Install button.

              8. Upon completion shutdown the computer.


    *If your computer came with Lion or Mountain Lion pre-installed then you are entitled to transfer your license once. If you purchased Lion or Mountain Lion from the App Store then you cannot transfer your license to another party. In the case of the latter you should install the original version of OS X that came with your computer. You need to repartition the hard drive as well as reformat it; this will assure that the Recovery HD partition is removed. See Step Three above. You may verify these requirements by reviewing your OS X Software License.

  • Topher Kessler Level 6 (9,865 points)

    You can do this, but its best to install the OS that came with the system and then let others upgrade and update with their own purchases. The ML license you bought from the Mac App Store is yours and to reinstall you will need to provide a valid Apple ID, so while you can use yours for now, those who purchase the system may need to have one as well if they run into problems and need to reinstall.

  • Wooky Level 1 (0 points)

    I see. Do you know what the original OS X was for this version of MBP? Was it with LION? Can't rememeber this.

  • Topher Kessler Level 6 (9,865 points)

    That one came with OS X 10.6 "Snow Leopard," and you should have one or two gray recovery installation DVD(s) that contain this software.

  • Wooky Level 1 (0 points)

    I might've lost them... can I still reset without the disks then?

  • Kappy Level 10 (265,883 points)

    No. You cannot include Lion or Mountain Lion with the machine, so you need the Snow Leopard DVDs. You can purchase replacements from Apple:


    Apple Store Customer Service at 1-800-676-2775 or visit online Help for more information.


    To contact product and tech support: Apple - Support - Contact Apple Support.

    For Mac App Store: Apple - Support - Mac App Store.

    For iTunes: Apple - Support - iTunes.

  • Topher Kessler Level 6 (9,865 points)

    Yes, as Kappy mentioned you can reboot to the current Recovery HD partition and reinstall OS X that way. The installation should not be linked to your account in any way, so if you just install and then power off the system at the welcome/setup screen then it should appear like new to anyone who uses it; however, they will not be able to reinstall (if needed) without their own Apple ID. The installation on the gray disks will allow them to do this.

  • Topher Kessler Level 6 (9,865 points)

    Well, he can technically, but it's not the appropriate thing to do, though I agree that he should contact Apple for a replacement for any lost installation DVDs.

  • Wooky Level 1 (0 points)

    Okay, so I need the DVD's. Thanks for the information. I appreciated your help.

  • Kappy Level 10 (265,883 points)

    That would be, technically, illegal. I don't believe Apple would appreciate our making such a recommendation on the forums. So I don't. Furthermore, the next user will have update or reinstall problems without the seller's Apple ID and password.