11 Things to Do Before Selling your Mac (Complete Guide)

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If you plan to sell, transfer, or replace your old Mac, the first thing you want to do is reset your Mac to factory defaults. However, if you’ve been using your Mac for a while, it should store all kinds of data, including sensitive data.

Therefore, before explaining how to reset your MacBook, here is a list of 11 things you can do to protect your data and ensure the migration of new owners.

Accelerates resetting Macs running macOS Monterey

If you have a Mac with Apple Silicon or T2 Security Chip, you don’t have to go through the tedious process outlined below before you sell your MacBook.

In Monterey Erase all content and settings Ability to erase all data safely and quickly, keep the current OS and eliminate the need to reinstall.

We’ve already seen how to reset an M1 or Intel Mac running on macOS Monterey.Basically, you just have to click Apple logo → System Preferences → Erase all content and settingsThen follow the instructions on the screen.

Older models don’t have quick features like macOS Monterey. The good thing is that there’s a lot to do, but they’re pretty easy.

Let’s jump to the list!

  1. Back up files
  2. Migrate files to new Mac
  3. Deauthorize your Mac from Apple Music, Apple TV, and podcasts
  4. Sign out of iCloud and Apple ID
  5. Sign out of all accounts and apps
  6. Unpair all accessories
  7. Sign out of iMessage and FaceTime
  8. Disable File Vault
  9. Erase your Mac and reinstall macOS
  10. Reset NVRAM / PRAM
  11. Remove Mac as a trusted device

1. Back up your files

It is important to back up your data to avoid the risk of data loss during device reset. And once you get a new device, you can easily restore all your data with just a few clicks. Here are different ways to back up your Mac:

Time Machine

Time Machine is a built-in backup feature that can automatically back up all your personal data on your Mac. However, it does require external storage devices such as USB, FireWire, and Thunderbolt ports.

Back up your Mac Time Machine

Save files to iCloud and iCloud Drive

iCloud is Apple’s unique cloud storage and computing service that allows you to store and sync all your photos, files, music, notes, contacts, and more across all Apple devices.

This service works throughout the Apple ecosystem, so if you have an iPhone or iPad, you can also back up your data from your iPhone or iPad on iCloud. Note that each Apple ID has only 5GB of free iCloud space. You need to upgrade your iCloud account for higher storage capacity.

External storage

iCloud seems to be the best option for Apple users, but you can also use other cloud-based storage devices to store your data online.

However, like iCloud, backups performed through external cloud storage are significantly more limited than Time Machine backups, which can store all your Mac’s data.

2. Migrate files to new Mac

If you’ve upgraded to a new Mac, you can use the Migration Assistant to migrate your data from your old Mac to your new MacBook. This includes all settings, apps, user accounts, and documents.

The process depends on the OS on which your Mac is running. However, you usually need to connect both devices to a power source and connect them to the same WIFI network or cable.

3. Deauthorize your Mac from Apple Music, Apple TV, and podcasts

Authorized devices can access all Apple Music content. Apple can authenticate up to five devices with your Apple ID. If you forget to revoke the permission, you will lose one slot from the five devices in your account. More importantly, there is a risk of granting new Mac owners access to Apple Music content.

To deauthorize your Mac:

  1. Open music App.
  2. click account From the menu bar.
  3. click Approval → Revoke permission for this computer..

    Deauthorize Mac from Apple Music

Similarly, you’ll need to deauthorize your old Mac from your Apple TV account. Open the app, account → Approval → Deauthorize this computer. For podcasts, just open the app and click accountThen select sign out..

4. Sign out from iCloud and Apple ID

As mentioned earlier, iCloud works to sync everything between Apple devices. Therefore, if you are using it, it is important to log out of your account. This will prevent older Macs from accessing all files.

When you sign out of iCloud, you’ll automatically sign out of the App Store, iMessage, and FaceTime.

For Macs running macOS Catalina or later:

  1. Click the Apple logo → System Preferences.
  2. select Apple IDThen click overview Located in the sidebar.
  3. click sign out Under the window.

    Click Sign Out with your Mac's Apple ID

For Macs running macOS Mojave or earlier:

  1. click Apple logoSystem Preferences..
  2. Choose iCloudThen select sign out..

You will be asked if you want to keep a copy of calendar, key ringWhen contact address Before signing out. I don’t want to keep the data on my old Mac that I plan to transfer or sell, so deselect them.

Don’t worry, all your iCloud data will remain in iCloud and other Apple devices will use your Apple ID to sign in to iCloud.

5. Sign out from all accounts and apps

Be sure to log out of all other apps you own before uninstalling, except for Apple services. This is especially true for licensed software. If you don’t do this, you may run into problems if the new Mac owner decides to download and install the same app or software.

Be sure to sign out from all other internet accounts, especially if your email and calendar are synced to your Mac.Move to System Preferences Internet accountSelect an account in the sidebar and click delete To delete an account, the (–) icon at the bottom.

6. Unpair all accessories

Ideally, if you’re using a Bluetooth device on your Mac, especially if the device that sells your older Mac is a companion or family member you spend a lot of time with, unpairing all your devices. You need to prevent the device from accidentally connecting to the old device.

Move to System Preferences → Bluetooth. A list of paired devices is displayed. Place the cursor on each and[削除]Click (X) Button to cancel pairing.. You will be prompted.select delete.

7. Sign out of iMessage and FaceTime

Suppose you’re using your Mac to send and receive texts and calls via iMessage, and to call colleagues and family via FaceTime. In that case, you will need to sign out of both services to prevent the new owner from accidentally accessing your private conversation.

To turn off iMessage on your Mac:

  1. Open message App.
  2. In the menu bar, Environmental settingThen click iMessage tab.
  3. click sign out..select sign out From the pop-up that reappears.

    Sign out of iMessage from your Mac

To turn off FaceTime:

  1. Open FaceTime → Settings.
  2. click sign out..

8. Disable File Vault

File Vault is a feature that encrypts all the information on your Mac. This prevents hackers from stealing, hacking, or accessing your device.

If you have previously encrypted the contents of the file, you need to turn it off in order to decrypt the disk. If you don’t do this, the old Mac will ask for a password and the new owner will not be able to set up the new Mac.

Do this:

  1. Go to System Preferences → Security and privacy.

    In Mac System Preferences[セキュリティとプライバシー]Click

  2. choose FileVault Click the tab and click Turn off File Vault..

    Disable FileVault on Mac

9. Erase your Mac and reinstall macOS

Now that you’ve erased all the rest of your personal and sensitive data from your old Mac, it’s time to erase your hard drive.

The exact steps to reset your Mac depend on your model and the OS you’re running. For a more comprehensive dive, read our article on how to reset your MacBook or Mac.

10. Reset NVRAM / PRAM

NVRAM stands for Non-Volatile Random Access Memory and stores OS-related settings, boot disk selection, and other configurations. Apple recommends resetting NVRAM before selling your MacBook.

Note: This procedure applies only to Intel Macs.

Resetting NVRAM may restore security features that may have changed, or if your Mac is behaving abnormally. Resetting this also clears your user preferences and confirms that your Mac is ready for a new owner.

11. Remove Mac as trusted device

If you have set your Mac as a trusted device for other devices, check the other devices and remove the old Mac from the list. This will prevent your device from accidentally sending a verification code request to your old Mac.

For iPhone or iPad:

  1. go to SettingThen tap your name.
  2. Tap your old Mac.Looking at the statement, you can see that it is a trusted device This device is trusted and you can receive an Apple ID verification code..
  3. Tap Remove from account..

    Remove Mac as a trusted device


Whether you sell, transfer, or trade in your Mac to upgrade to a new model, it’s important to protect your personal data. This will make your old Mac available to new users and prevent problems during setup.

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