Consumer Electronics

3 Things to do Before You Sell Your Mac

sell your mac

You and your Mac have had some wonderful times together, but it’s time to move on.

When you’re ready to sell your Mac, it’s not as simple as just unplugging it and handing it over. Your computer has a lot of personal information and data stored on it that needs to be wiped before you get rid of it.

Here are three steps to take before you sell your Mac to ensure a smooth transition to its new owner.

Step 1: Back it up

Before you even think about wiping your computer clean, you need to backup all the important data and files.

There are several ways you can do this.

Time Machine

Time Machine is your Mac’s built-in backup feature. You’ll need to use it with your own external storage solution, such as an external hard drive connected to a USB, FireWire, or Thunderbolt port on your Mac, or a Time Capsule or MacOS server on your network.

Time Machine automatically backs up your Mac, but if you want to back it up now rather than waiting for the next scheduled backup time, select “Back Up Now” from the Time Machine menu.


You can store photos, documents, music, and other files to the iCloud, and retrieve them from another device at any time simply by signing into the cloud.

CDs or DVDs

If your Mac has a DVD drive, or you connect to one externally, you can burn your files to a CD or DVD.

One thing to keep in mind is that your new Mac probably won’t have a way to play DVDs or CDs, so you’ll need an external DVD drive if you plan to access any of your backed-up files.

Third party backup

Another option is to use a third party like SuperDuper! or Carbon Copy Cloner to backup your Mac before you sell it. These sites create exact clones of your hard drive so you can access all of your data later.

All of the above

Well, you probably don’t need to use all of the above backup methods, but we definitely recommend using more than one to minimize the chance of losing any of your data before you sell your Mac.

Step 2: Sign out of all your Apple services

To make the transition as seamless as possible, make sure you’ve signed out of iTunes, iCloud, iMessage, etc., so there’s no confusion when the new owner tries to log into any of those programs.

You should also sign out of any third-party apps that you’ve installed on your Mac.

Step 3: Reformat your hard drive

Once you’ve backed everything up and signed out of all of your personal accounts, your final step before you sell your Mac is to erase everything by reformatting your hard drive.

This step is crucial. You don’t want a stranger having access to any of your personal information that may be buried on your Mac, like your contact info, credit card number or social security number.

After you reformat your hard drive, you should install a fresh copy of the MacOS for the new owner.

Now you’re ready to sell your Mac

It’s hard saying goodbye to an old friend, but hopefully, you have a brand new Mac waiting for you on the other side.

Contact us today if you have any questions or would like any help selling your Mac.


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