Sometimes the best possible solution for an unsolvable computer problem is a complete wipe of the hard drive and a fresh install of the operating system. Though this does clear all of your installed applications, preferred user settings, and documents, it can often resolve deep-rooted system problems that have arisen as a result of corrupted files or fragmented installs. Clearing your iMac hard drive is just one step in a full OS X reinstall.

Step 1

Click the Apple menu button and select “Restart.”

Step 2

Hold down “Command-R” while the computer restarts.

Step 3

Select “Disk Utility,” then click the “Continue” button.

Step 4

Select your drive from the list. Click the “Erase” tab.

Step 5

Choose “Mac OS Extended (Journal)” in the pop-up and choose a new name for the drive.

Step 6

Click the “Erase” button to initiate the procedure.