Can’t erase your Mac’s startup disk? Try Internet Recovery as a last resort


When you’re trying to wipe an old Mac to set it up fresh or to give it away or sell it, you typically want to erase the drive. Sometimes, you’re thwarted.

The easiest sequence is the following:

  1. Select  > Restart if your Mac is running.

  2. Just as the computer starts, hold down Command-R, which loads macOS Recovery.

  3. Wait until the startup progress bar appears and release the keys. (If you see a globe, skip down to the end of the article.)

  4. When Recovery starts up, select Disk Utility and click Continue.

  5. Make sure you’re selecting your macOS startup partition and not the entire drive, which contains the macOS Recovery partition you’re currently using. Fom the View menu, select Show All Devices.

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