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How do I do a full factory restore in OS X Lion?

On Snow Leopard it was all done through the disk, alas, we don't have one anymore. I'm planning on selling my current MacBook Pro 13" in favor of a new 13" Air but I want to do a full factory reset on my current computer first.

From what I can tell, you hold Command + R at start up and then do some stuff in the Disk Utility, but I'm kind of scared. Do just erase my Hard Drive from inside the Utility and Lion will automagically install over it?

Anyone have any insight?

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cjtylr's pick

I found a better step by step here:­/2011­/07­/20­/lion­-clean­-install­-guide/
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cjtylr's pick

personally i just installed Snow Leopard on the machine and sold it with that i was concerned that since i had download the Lion from the App Store it may be tied to my iTunes account some how.

i heard a rumor that they are release Lion on thumb drive (not sure this is real or not) but i will buy that even if it's at the 70$ price. i just feel safer at least right now having media to do clean installs the downloading the OS from the cloud is still something i am not all that comfortable with.
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I did clean installs on two machines. Being lazy, I did an initial, non-clean install via the app store, then restarted holding down command+R to boot into rescue mode (or whatever it is called).

Once in rescue mode, I reformatted the main partition with the Disk Utility and re-downloaded Lion from there. Of course, I used Carbon Copy Cloner to create a bootable clone of the disk before doing any of this.
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I know I'm late to the party here, but here is what I did to do a fully clean install of Lion.

1. Downloaded Lion from Mac App Store
2. Made a bootable backup of my Snow Leopard disk to an external drive (Firewire 800)
3. Booted the backup drive
4. Used Disk Utility to erase the internal Snow Leopard drive
5. Ran the Lion install
6. Pointed to the newly erased internal drive
7. About 20 minutes later, I had a Clean Lion install and a bootable full backup of my Snow Leopard system
8. Started the fun process of restoring my apps, documents and music
9. My music restore was pretty darn easy.
a. Ran iTunes to get it to create files so that I was sure of destination of Music files
b. Quit iTunes
c. Copied all my data from Snow Leopard backup drive to new Lion drive
d. Launched iTunes again and everything was back to normal. :)
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If you do a complete wipe out of the system, including Any system (osx lion, leopard..) but you then re-install it, rather with actual disc or copy. That should completely wipe any info. that you would have previously had on it...Does that help? I am in the process of doing it myself, so if I mess up I'll let ya know :/

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I asked the same question earlier, and flackend in gdgt shared this website with me:­/article­/161064­/2011­/07­/installing...

I hope that helps!
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Those are for installs. I'm looking for step by step on how to erase all of my current data on the computer and reinstall Lion on an essentially fresh hard drive. I've seen both of those links before and will double check them tomorrow, but I didn't see any restore instructions.
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Sorry about that Chris, I obviously didn't pay close attention to your question. I will do some web searching and I'll let you know if I find anything.
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Mac OSX Lion has a built in firmware utility that will re-download lion and install it, even if you wipe your whole computer. (for the macbook air only sorry)
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