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Posted November 2, 2022 by Kirk McElhearn

How to safely dispose of an old Mac

So it is time to transfer on and finish your relationship together with your Mac. You had fun collectively; You’ll all the time have reminiscences of the most effective moments you shared. However now there’s a greater Mac, it could possibly be quicker, have a greater display, or be lighter and extra moveable. Whereas breakups are all the time powerful, it is a good suggestion to make this one as easy as doable.

Your Mac accommodates quite a lot of private info and is linked to a number of Apple accounts. Once you’re planning to eliminate your Mac—whether or not you are promoting it, giving it away, or sending it for recycling—there are a number of issues it’s essential do to ensure your knowledge stays protected. There are additionally some steps it’s essential take to take away that Mac from Apple accounts.

On this article, I focus on the ten steps it’s essential take earlier than you do away with a Mac.

New characteristic Erase All Content material and Settings in macOS Monterey

The ten steps under work for any Mac, however with macOS Monterey, launched in October 2021, there is a new, simplified solution to erase all the things in your Mac. Should you open System Settings, then select System Settings > Basic > Switch o Reset > Erase all content material and settings, the Erase Assistant in macOS Monterey will signal out of your Apple ID and iCloud, take away your Contact ID fingerprints (if relevant), unpair any Bluetooth equipment, take away all gadgets Apple Pockets in your Mac and disable Discover My and Activation Lock. Erase Assistant can carry out these actions for all consumer accounts in your Mac.

This characteristic handles a number of of the steps under, when you have a Mac with a T2 safety chip, which incorporates most Macs since 2018. Erase Wizard will even immediate you to again up Time Machine, so if you happen to comply with this process, you solely have to carry out a few steps under.

Due to this, when you have a Mac that helps this characteristic and plan to do away with it, you could first improve to macOS Monterey earlier than you should use Erase Assistant. If not, learn on for the steps you will have to tackle older Macs.

1. Again up your Mac

Earlier than you do anything, again up your Mac. It is best to again up all of your information, and it is best to even clone your Mac drive. You might need a Time Machine backup, and that it is nice, however if you happen to clone your drive with Intego Private Backup, you possibly can copy that clone again to your new Mac to shortly begin utilizing your new pc. You will not have to obtain or reinstall apps, and you will have all of the settings you have been utilizing in your Mac. In fact, you may wish to do a clear set up; There are good causes for that. In actual fact, now we have an article that addresses this query: Establishing a brand new Mac: Ought to I migrate or do a clear set up? However a clone is the most secure solution to save all the information in your Mac.

2. Signal out of iCloud

As soon as you have made your backups, it’s essential signal out of your iCloud account. To do that, go to System Settings, click on your identify on the prime of the sidebar, scroll right down to the underside of the panel, and click on Signal Out. When you’ve got Discover My Mac lively, you will have to disable it first. Signing out of iCloud will take away your machine from Apple’s servers, however not from the iTunes Retailer…

3. Deauthorize your Mac with the iTunes Retailer

The following step is to deauthorize your Mac with the iTunes Retailer. That is simple; Go to the Music app (if you happen to’re utilizing macOS Catalina or later) or iTunes, select Account > Authorizations > Deauthorize this pc, and comply with the directions. That is necessary, as a result of you possibly can solely authorize 5 Macs with one iTunes Retailer account, so when you have different computer systems, you’d higher be certain that the one you are eliminating is not linked to your account. When you’ve got an account with Audible, the audiobook supplier, you may also deauthorize that account from the Account > Authorizations menu.

4. Signal out of your iMessages account

There’s yet one more account it’s essential signal out of: your iMessages account. In Messages, select Preferences > iMessage, click on Signal Out.

5. Reset your Mac’s NVRAM

Your Mac has NVRAM (Non-Unstable RAM) which shops sure settings and may additionally have some adjustments made to the pc’s security measures. It is easy to reset this, however it does require a reboot. Shut down your Mac, then flip it on and instantly maintain down the Command, Choice, P, and R keys. Maintain them for about 20 seconds and it is best to see the Apple brand reappear.

6. Unpair Bluetooth gadgets

That is solely crucial if you’re promoting or giving your Mac to somebody you may be near sooner or later. In case your gadgets (keyboard, mouse, or AirPods) are nonetheless paired together with your previous pc and also you’re inside Bluetooth vary, they might be lively. Go to System Settings > Bluetooth, hover over every machine you wish to unpair, after which click on the x. Notice that you’ll want to have a wired keyboard and mouse to go to the ultimate step.

7. Erase the drive in your Mac

As soon as you have signed out of all of your accounts and are positive you might have a dependable backup — and two backups is even higher — it is time to wipe your Mac’s drive. You may’t simply delete your information; Anybody utilizing disk restoration software program on the drive will have the ability to get better lots of your information. Learn this text to learn to securely erase your arduous drive. Nonetheless, there could also be a shortcut to this course of. Should you use Apple’s File Vault to encrypt your drive, you possibly can merely erase the drive. Because the drive was already encrypted, it won’t be doable to get better information. Notice that you would be able to simply do that if you happen to set up macOS, within the subsequent step, from the restoration partition. Upon restart, your Mac shows a macOS Utilities window. Select Disk Utility and erase the drive from there earlier than putting in macOS.

8. Set up macOS

Should you plan to promote this Mac or cross it on to another person, it is a good suggestion to put in macOS. You are able to do this by plugging in your clone drive, if you happen to’ve saved the installer, or by utilizing the macOS restoration partition. Doing the latter will obtain the complete installer from the App Retailer. When you’ve got restricted bandwidth, this might take some time. I typically discover it greatest to avoid wasting the installer when utilizing it on my Mac, then once I ditch a Mac I plug in my clone, boot from that drive (press the Choice key when beginning the Mac to pick out the boot drive), and run the installer from there. In any other case, comply with Apple’s directions to reinstall macOS. Remember the fact that in contrast to the particular apps you possibly can obtain from the App Retailer, macOS is not tied to your Apple ID. Then you possibly can set up it on the Mac and anybody can use it with out signing in to your account.

9. Clear up your Mac

Should you’re promoting your Mac or giving it to a member of the family or buddy, then a very good cleansing is so as. I speak about cleansing a Mac on the finish of this spring cleansing article. Be particularly cautious when cleansing your Mac’s display so you do not harm it, however clear it properly to ensure it appears to be like its greatest.

10. Recycle your Mac

In case your Mac not works, or if it is too previous, you possibly can recycle it. Apple’s recycling program will take any of your gadgets and recycle them. They’ll even provide you with a present card if the pc nonetheless has some worth. You will not get a lot, and Apple’s costs for buying and selling in Macs have been rock-bottom recently. Nonetheless, I would recommend you solely use this for a very previous machine; you will not get sufficient for a current Mac to make it value your whereas. And even when the pc does not work, Apple’s associate will be certain that the Mac is recycled as a lot as doable. It’s also possible to take an previous Mac to an Apple Retailer for recycling.

With this in thoughts, you possibly can welcome your new Mac house. Set it up and get to work, and respect your new pc!

How can I study extra?

each week within the Intego Mac Podcast, Intego’s Mac safety specialists focus on the most recent Apple information, safety and privateness tales, and supply sensible suggestions for getting essentially the most out of your Apple gadgets. You should definitely comply with the podcast to be sure you do not miss an episode.

In episode 163 of the Intego Mac Podcast we speak about safely disposing of a Mac and extra.

It’s also possible to subscribe to our digital publication and maintain a watch right here on Mac Safety Weblog for the most recent safety and privateness information from Apple. And do not forget to comply with Intego in your favourite social networks: Fb, Instagram, Twitterand YouTube.

About Kirk McElhearn

Kirk McElhearn writes about Apple merchandise and extra on his Kirkville weblog. He co-hosts the Intego Mac Podcast, in addition to a number of different podcasts, and is an everyday contributor to The Mac Safety Weblog, TidBITS, and different web sites and publications. Kirk has written greater than two dozen books, together with the Take Management books on Apple’s multimedia functions, Scrivener, and LaunchBar. Observe him on Twitter at @mcelhearn. View all posts by Kirk McElhearn →

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How to Securely Dispose of Your Old Mac