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I have bought an old Apple Mac

Posted on 2016-11-23
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Operating System is 10.5.8. How can I reset to factory default ? Clear user data, etc ?
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Question by:unrealone1
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Expert Comment

by:D Patel
ID: 41899092
Here are the general steps to reset your hard drive (they are outlined in detail below):

Make sure you are connected to the Internet so you can download the latest copy of Mac OS X or macOS Sierra.

  1. Use an app like SuperDuper or Carbon Copy Cloner to clone your internal hard drive to an external drive. This enables you to access all your old files, and the drive can be re-cloned to the internal drive if you want to restore your Mac.
  2. Deauthorize your iTunes store account. (You should also deauthorize any third-party apps, such as Photoshop, that are locked to your Mac).
  3. Turn off FileVault (if you are using it).
  4. Sign out of iCloud.
  5. Restart the Mac in Recovery Mode (hold down Command and the R key during restart).
  6. Use Disk Utility to erase the hard drive. Click on Disk Utility > Continue. Select the main volume and click Unmount then Erase). Quit Disk Utility (Disk Utility > Quit Disk Utility).
  7. Click Reinstall OS X and Continue. Follow the instructions to reinstall Mac OS X.

The detailed steps are attached with this event.
Detailed-steps-on-How-to-reset-an-i.docx
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41899161
What model is it? What Year? This is OSX Leopard which is pretty old and no longer supported. It may not be possible to run a current OS on your model.
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Expert Comment

by:Eoin OSullivan
ID: 41899626
Please post the model and specification of the Mac computer as it is probably unlikely it will run latest OSX and may need DVD to wipe and re-install OSX .. only Macs from last few years can be installed or upgraded from the Internet.

You'll get the information on the Model, RAM etc on the Apple Menu .. under About this Mac .. post here and someone will advise
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Expert Comment

by:rindi
ID: 41899633
Or usually that info is also on a label on the underside of the foot of the iMAC (if it is an iMAC).
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Expert Comment

by:Tim Lapin
ID: 41899669
To answer your question regarding resetting it to factory defaults:  usually that means wiping it and re-installing the O/S.  10.5.x (aka Leopard) came on DVDs, meaning that you can't wipe it and start over without them.  

A less clean but simpler method would be to log in as the admin user and do the following:
1)  Create a new ADMIN user
2)  Log in and verify that the new admin account works
3)  Delete all the other users plus their profiles.

Echoing what has been written above, it might be that Snow Leopard (10.6.x) or Lion (10.7.x) is as far as you can push that model.  Please note that Snow Leopard came on DVDs as well, should you choose to upgrade.  Lion was the first O/S available via the web.  I doubt highly that you will be able to find either one of those today.

To check how far you can push it, log in and look under the Apple Menu for System Profiler.  If you don't see that, select "About this Mac (or similar) and look for "more info" or similar.  When that runs, gather the overview information.  It should contain Mac model, identifier, CPU specs and so on.

Then search online using that information.  Try the identifier first as a first search.  The site Everymac.com is quite good and will tell you everything you could possibly want to know about your Mac.
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Accepted Solution

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serialband earned 2000 total points
ID: 41900693
Restart the Apple Setup:
Open Terminal with an admin account and copy and paste this into it:
sudo rm /var/db/.AppleSetupDone

It will prompt you for the account password.  This will force the Mac to boot up with a fresh apple setup, as if you got it new from the store.  You will then create a new admin account and set up new preferences.  Once that's done, remove all the cruft from /Users/.  Any old accounts will be there.  You can just delete them.  You might have a /Users/Shared folder, but that should stay along with your account.

You should probably upgrade the HD to a SSD.  It will double the perceptible usable speed of the system.  If you don't upgrade the spinning HD, you should find a disk defragmenter and fully defragment the hard disk once, after you've deleted all the cruft.  (You could manually defragment it, but only if you know how.)


If you want to reinstall the OS instead:
Something that old, generally needs an Installer Disc with the original OS.  If you don't have the disc, you'll have to find one, since Leopard (10.5) does not have a recovery partition to boot to.  Since you have a Power PC, you can't upgrade it beyond what you have.  I suggest that you don't use Safari, as it's obsolete and not upgradable unless you have a newer OS X.  It's best to remove Safari completely.  Get yourself Chrome, Firefox, or Opera and be certain you install an adblocker and install an antivirus software.  I would turn off all browser scripting until needed too, but web devs insist on scripting everything now and they cripple all text so blind users can't use their text readers, and most users don't like the tedium of turning scripting on and off.  Turn off all sharing completely.  There is some security in PowerPC in that there weren't any viruses written for it, but that doesn't mean it's secure at all, just ignored.
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Author Closing Comment

by:unrealone1
ID: 41905689
This is the answer I needed. There is some value in this older mac, thanks and i will follow your advice.
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