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Can I directly erase the encrypted SSD in recovery mode?

I'm using OS X Catalina on an iMac 2020 to erase my encrypted SSD while it's in recovery mode. I've heard that after choosing the drive to be deleted, I need to pick "unlock volume name" from the file menu in Disk Utility and input my encryption key or password. But now I see that my file menu does not include such an option. What action should I take next? Will my Macintosh HD (APFS encrypted) remain encrypted and unreadable if I keep deleting it? Is there anyone that can assist with this situation? Many thanks.

Best Answered by

iBoysoft author Amanda Wong

Amanda Wong

Answered on Monday, February 19, 2024

If you don't need to back up data on the encrypted drive after unlocking, you can directly erase the Mac internal drive in macOS Recovery Mode, the erased drive should be non-encrypted and accessible.

You can encrypt an internal/external hard drive on a Mac in multiple ways. To unlock an encrypted drive, it requires you to enter the correct password. Erasing the SSD in macOS recovery mode will delete all contents, therefore, you should back up the SSD first if you need the data.

If you don't mind data loss, you can erase the encrypted SSD directly in recovery mode, it won't prompt for a password when the reformatting process completes, the drive is blank, unencrypted, and accessible. 


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