First time reformatting.

Hi all. Well i went to reapir my disk this morning, thanks from someone who answered my flash player question. It got nearly to the end, then said back up all files, reformat then restore. I know the formatting is easy enough, any tips tricks would help. I suspect a lot of this has to do that I was one of the beta sign ups when Yosemite was in developement. Anyway any advice would be helpful. thanks.


Try it from recovery

Club AppleVis Member


Did you do this from the recovery partition? This may sometimes give you different results. To get to the recovery partition, do the following:

  1. Restart your mac. When you hear the startup chime, immediately hold down Command-R. You can do this before you even hear the chime as well.
  2. Hold it down for about ten seconds. Maybe overkill, but it's better to be safe than sorry.
  3. I wait for about forty seconds or so, but after this, try pressing Command-F5 to turn on VoiceOver.
  4. Press down arrow when VoiceOver comes on until you get to Disk Utility.
  5. When you are on Disk utility, VO-right arrow to "Continue" and press VO-Space.

The procedure is the same from here as described in
the Revisitting flash player issue thread

Hope you have luck.

I did reapir the disk

Hi Nicoli, i'm sorry if i got that wrong. I did repair the disc but it sad I needed to reformat and clean instal. also fyi disk permissions repair was dimmed. Thanks for any help

Where did you do this?

Club AppleVis Member


As I said, did you do it from the recovery partition or when you were running OS X on your startup disk?

When it says you need to reformat and reinstall OS X, sometimes doing this task from the Recovery HD helps out a little more, which is why I am asking. My Mac has given me the same message, and this is usually what I do to get around it.

IF you have already done that, I would recommend backing up everything you need then reinstalling Yosemite again. There are third party tools which may help, but even in these cases a lot of them want to use bootable media with their own user interface which provides no accessibility. Make sure that you have license keys, e-mail messages like iTunes Receipts, and anything else sensitive backed up first.

Make sure to format the disk first, otherwise it will simply upgrade your current installation instead.

What I've done so far.

Hi. I did the repair fromt he recovery partition. That's where I was given the message. I don't mind reinstalling, but can I do it after I reformat, still from recovery? I don't have a thumb drive, that can be used as a bootable installer. I did have one, but somehow it decied to hide itself. Been meaning to grab one, just, didn't. thanks again for any help. Siobhan

Yes indeed

Club AppleVis Member


Yes, you can. Since the recovery partition told you to do so, it sounds like a real issue. Go ahead and back up your stuff, then reformat the drive.

After you have reformatted the partition, you can go ahead and install OS X over again from the recovery partition. Obviously that means you need to download the OS X image again, but as long as you have access to Wi-Fi or Ethernet, that won't be an issue for you, however when connecting to Wi-Fi from the recovery partition's status menu you may experience the crashing of VoiceOver. There is also a chance that you might not. If you do, however, read a similar post and my reply in the thread about
How to format my Mac and reinstall OS X Yosemite?
and proceed from there. That will tell you how to connect to Wi-Fi using Terminal.

Good luck!

RE: First time reformatting.

Hello. I know most users will not repeat the process I outlined in my reply to but this is exactly what you need to do. If you want the cleanest of clean installs, you can not possibly use the Recovery HD partition to install Mac OS X on the same drive as the Recovery HD partition resides. This is because for a clean install to be truly clean the Recovery HD partition must be eradicated as well. This is why I recommend booting from a carbon copy clone then deleting it when the fresh installation is fully usable and operational. Read my initial reply in that thread and you should have no problems. If you have an external hard disk and an Internet connection you can do what I did with success.

Agree, but one thing

Club AppleVis Member


The only reason I do not mention clearing the recovery disk as well is because it's a completely unnecessary step.

As the recovery partition has no actual impact on the operating system itself, you're not going to gain any benefit from taking the extra time to put a bootable OS X image on your external hard drive.

Also, a clean installation is not a bootable clone. A clean installation is an installation with no data on it whatsoever and freshly installed. A bootable clone is an exact clone of your partition, and the cloning method will probably migrate your data and again treating it as an upgrade rather than a clean installation. This is just logic speaking of course, since this is normally what happens when you launch the installer from a running OS X operating system. I'm happy to be corrected here, since I haven't ever migrated data as using a cloned drive is very time-consuming and unnecessarily so.

I suppose it depends on what you want to do. If you want to do a clean install, the extra step with a bootable clone isn't really necessary unless it doesn't upgrade you but actually transfers absolutely no data. I'm curious as to whether it actually does that, but I'd imagine so for the reason stated above. If you want to keep all your data, you can install it from a cloned installation, assuming that it does migrate data as OS X normally does in that case.

If it doesn't transfer anything, you could just create an external USB flash drive with the installation image instead, since that saves you a lot of hours, or use the recovery partition. As I said in the beginning, the recovery partition's presence doesn't make any impact on your actual installation and the installation itself is still clean.

Fortunately, Carbon Copy Cloner does clone the recovery partition of the source volume and archives it, so again...if it still migrates data from the cloned drive when installation, there's no real benefit and it isn't a clean installation at all. Again, I'm curious to whether it does. It should since it is a running operating system, although it may not since it's on another drive.

Feel free to help my curiosity along. :)

I will use recovery

Because I don't have carbon cloner, nor the cash to buy it, will use the Recovery partition on the HD. i'll reformat, then reinstall. Here's hoping VO won't crash, because i haven't looked at the steps, and I am one who reads each then folows through. Here goes.

Best of luck

Club AppleVis Member


I wish you the best of luck. Everything will hopefully go smoothly for you. It does appear that if you have a list of preferred networks, the recovery partition gains access to the Keychain and uses the stored information to connect you as soon as you boot into the partition.

That's rather handy. it shouldn't disconnect you from Wi-Fi once you reformat.

Again, good luck! I am pondering reformatting my own since it was an upgrade, and it might get rid of some issues I'm having. It usually does.

Might need help already.

Hi. I went in with command R, verified the disk. It says both volumes appear to be ok. I then went in to the partition tab, but it says, the size of the drive, then format mac extended journaled, dimmed popup button. I went in to the regualr Mac, same thing when I clicked on disk utility. So, am I already doing something wrong? Lol. My last name isn't Murphy for nothing. ;) Thanks for all your help. I jsut want to do this right. Also, I don't want to mess with partitions, just because I don't know what i'm doing. will the recovery HD stil be ok, or do I need to worry about making sure that's created? I really do have a decent tech head on my shoulders, never dived face first into Mac though. :) Thanks again.

What you need to do

Club AppleVis Member


That's to be expected. What you ended up doing was trying to format the actual hard drive, and not the partition. Since you are running it off of a partition on the main hard drive, it will not let you do this.

What you instead need to do is arrow down once. You will have multiple items if you only have one drive connected. The first is your main drive, and your partitions are underneath it on a next level. It is kind of like a tree view. On some Macs, both of them are called Macintosh HD, which can be confusing for sure. You will also see the base recovery system here, but don't touch that. You really can't, anyway.

You can use VO-down arrow instead inside the table once you are interacting with it to insure that you are on level two, and not level one.

Once you are on the correct partition, Simply stop interacting again and VO-right to the Erase tab. If you are trying to perform an action on the main drive instead of a partition, you will not see this tab at all.

Since you are reformatting, you do not need to partition it manually. All you have to do is select the partition you want to format, then choose the erase tab. Pick your options here. Your format needs to be Mac OS Extended (Journaled), and then you pick a name for it. After this, you can pick security options based on your requirements. This mainly concerns how many times you want the erased data to be overwritten with zeros. This can take quite a while, however, if you choose to use something else than the default choice.

After this, you simply press the Erase button, and it'll format the partition for you.

Good luck!

Thank you so much

I did figure out there was a couple of items, again, i want to know EXACTLY what i'm doing, before I do it. You've been a wonderful, paitent help. Again, thank you very much. Now off to format. Gulp. If voice over crashes, Oh god. ;)


Club AppleVis Member


I wish you luck. Be sure to view the information on how to connect to Wi-Fi from the Terminal should you not be able to connect from the status menu in the recovery partition due to VoiceOver crash, or if it did not connect you automatically, unless you happen to use Ethernet.

VoiceOver should not crash otherwise.

Dimmed, again, using second HD

Hi. i just selected Macintosh HD, the second choice, then I went over, Mac extended journaled, was selected, dimmed popup. After that security options were dimmed, as was the erase button. Only thing it would let me do was erase free space. Can you get me out of this one? :)

I'm the one that needs to reformat. Lol

I didn't realize I'd need to be in the recovery to start this thing. ok saw that is what i need to do. Now to find those utilitie commands to run terminal. I've used it a bit, hope it's not to difficult. Thansk again Nickoli.

A few things

Club AppleVis Member


Please check for updates by going to the App Store from the dock, then pressing Command-5 for the updates tab. Make sure that all recovery installations are installed.

If this is the case, go back into the recovery partition again and turn on VoiceOVer, and wonderful Fred should greet you. Check to see if you cannot repair permissions on the entire hard drive as well as repair the disk again, as it sounds like something has extremely cocked up here.

IF you can, check again to see if the Macintosh HD partition still has the dimmed items with Erase and Security Options. If it does, a logical partition could be interfering. The same is the case on my system, so it sounds like it may be on yours as well. To quickly find out, you can go to Terminal when OS X is booted up and type:
diskutil list.

You can remove the logical partition which is hidden, then merge its contents of Apple Core Storage with Macintosh HD with the same partition sizes, merging both recovery partitions and then erase the disks.

I just saw your new reply. I thought you were already in recovery since you said you used Command-R.

At any rate, then my system sounds more messed up than yours. Keep in mind that you do not need to use terminal at all if your VoiceOver does not crash when connecting to Wi-Fi, or if you are already connected by Wi-Fi or Ethernet.

Good luck!