Welcome to the "Resetting your pre-owned Apple laptop computer" course. In this course, we'll show you how to reset a pre-owned Apple computer that might have been given to you, permanently, by a family member or friend.
A Reset will delete the previous owner's files and applications, and wipe the computer's memory. It'll make it like a brand-new computer, ready for you to make your own.
The steps in this video will also come in handy if you plan to pass your Apple computer on to someone else in the future.
[eSafety tip] If you plan to pass on your computer to someone else permanently in the future, you should first reset it. This will protect your security and privacy.
Let's get started!
If you see a screen that asks you to confirm your country, your computer is already prepared for setting up and you can exit this demonstration and go to the next course, called "Setting up your new Apple laptop computer".
If you see the previous owner's Login screen, you'll need to delete their account and all the files and data on the computer so it's safe for you to use as your own computer.
In order to do this though, you'll first need to log in to it.
[eSafety tip] Of course, you shouldn't share passwords with others, so ask the computer's previous owner to enter their password onto the Login screen for you. Once the computer is fully reset, their password will be erased, and you will be able to create your own password to keep the computer and your information secure.
Once you have logged in to the computer, you will see a screen known as the desktop. It shows icons for files and folders, and it's the first screen you see each time you log in.
The computer will need to be connected to Wi-Fi for the reset to work successfully. If it isn't already connected to Wi-Fi, you can learn how to do this in the "Apple laptop: System Settings" course.
To start the reset, look for the Apple icon at the top left of the desktop screen, and click it to open the Apple menu. From the menu that appears, click on Restart. A pop-up box will ask if you're sure you want to go ahead, but don't click the blue Restart button just yet. First, locate the command and R keys on your keyboard. You'll need to hold down both of these keys at the same time immediately after clicking Restart. When you're ready, click Restart.
When the screen goes black, you should immediately hold down the command and R keys at the same time. After a moment, the screen will turn back on and show the Apple logo and a progress bar. It's now OK to take your fingers off both the keys.
The Apple logo will stay on the screen for a few moments, and then the Recovery panel will appear, with some options that you can use to reset your computer. If you see a Login screen instead, this means it didn't quite work and you'll need to try again. Just rewind this video and follow the steps from the beginning once more.
Once you've successfully restarted your computer and it shows the Recovery panel, look for Disc Utility, and click on it. Then, click Continue to open the Disc Utility menu. On the left side of the menu, click on Macintosh HD. If you can see a few Macintosh HD headers, be sure to click the top one.
HD stands for hard drive and is where all the information on your computer is stored. We're going to delete everything from the computer's hard drive, including the previous owner's files, accounts and applications, so the computer will be safe for you to use.
Look for Erase, which is in the top-right menu. Click on it and a pop up will appear so you can confirm you want to erase the hard drive. You can leave the information as is, and just click the Erase button. The erase process should take around a minute to complete. Once it's finished, click Done.
The Disc Utility menu will still be open, so click the red dot in the top left to close it.
The Recovery panel should still be open on the screen, and we will need this for the next step. The erase process deleted the previous owner's files and applications, and it also erased your computer's operating software. You will need to reinstall it for your computer to work, so let's do that now.
From the Recovery panel, click on Reinstall macOS. Our version of macOS is Ventura, but yours may have a different name. Then click on Continue.
In the panel that appears, click Continue again. Your computer may take a moment to download the installation information.
Next, you'll see Apple's software agreement. You can read through the terms and conditions and, when you're ready to install the operating software, click on Agree at the bottom of the screen. Then, click Agree in the box above to confirm.
Now you need to choose where to install your computer's operating system. There should be only one option, called Macintosh HD. Click on it, and then click Continue to install the operating software on this hard drive. It could take quite some time to install the operating software, and your computer will estimate how long you can expect it to take. You can come back to your computer to check on its progress at any time during the reset. Once you see a screen asking you to select your location, your pre-owned computer is prepared for set up.
If you're unsure about any steps you can rewind the video. Otherwise, you can begin the next course, "Setting up your new Apple laptop computer", to complete the setup process. You'll find this, and many other great courses, on Be Connected.