Reinstalling Mac OS X

Have been using my Mac for almost 2 years now, straight from the box. Somehow I perceive more “spinning beachballs” each time I start my Mac. Decided to try a reinstall (I’m not sure if it’ll improve things but since I’ve never done a reinstall before, might as well learn how).


  1. Insert the Mac OS X Install Disc and double-click the Install Mac OS X icon.
  2. Follow the onscreen instructions. In the panel where you select the destination disk, select your current Mac OS X disk (in most cases, it will be the only one available).
  3. Click Options. If you want to save your existing files, users, and network settings, select “Archive and Install,” then select “Preserve Users and Network Settings.” If you want to erase everything on your computer and reinstall Mac OS X, select “Erase and Install.” You can’t recover erased data.
  4. Click Continue.
  5. Click Customize to select which parts of Mac OS X you’d like to install, or click Install to perform a basic installation (recommended).

[Screenshot from Mac Help]

And from “How to back up and restore your files“:

Regardless of which method(s) you choose, you should store at least one copy of your backup outside the computer to guard against common risks such as theft or power issues, including lightning. You may also wish to store a copy of important data at a second site to guard against property destruction, such as fire and natural disasters.

OK, I bought an external drive and copied all the important files. For some “ultra-important” files (like my GarageBand songs!) I’ve even burned to a DVD.

Links to plug-ins and apps (to download first, so that they can be reinstallation right away):

Related How To guides:


One thought on “Reinstalling Mac OS X

  1. One thing I left out (just added in) is that my instructions were originally derived from MacFixit which I used to follow.

    I am sending my MBP for repair and when its back, I will be finally installing Leopard. So I am updating the software section now…

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