How to set up and use Find My Mac

Find My Mac is the best way to find and protect your lost or stolen Mac. All you need is your Apple ID, another computer or your iPhone, and you'll be able to locate your Mac, lock it, or erase all of its data.

Here's how to set up and use Find My Mac!

How to enable Find My Mac

You have to set up Find My Mac before your Mac goes missing; otherwise, it's useless. You'll first need to make sure you Location Services are enabled:

  1. Click the Apple menu button () on the top left of your screen.
  2. Click System Preferences.
  3. Click Security & Privacy.

    Click System Preferences, click Security & Privacy

  4. Click the lock in the bottom left corner and type in the administrator's password to make changes.
  5. Make sure the checkbox next to Enable Location Services is checked.

    Click the lock, make sure the checkbox next to Enable Location Services is checked

Now enable Find My Mac:

  1. Click the Apple menu button () on the top left of your screen.
  2. Click System Preferences.
  3. Click iCloud.

    Click System Preferences, click iCloud

  4. Click the checkbox next to Find My Mac to enable it.
  5. Click Allow.

    Click the checkbox next to Find My Mac, click Allow

Now when you sign into iCloud.com on another computer or us the Find iPhone app on your iPhone, you'll be able to find and erase your lost or stolen Mac. Just make sure you sign in with the Apple ID that's in use on your missing Mac.

How to locate your Mac using Find My Mac on the web

If you don't have an iPhone, you can use another computer to track your lost or stolen Mac by signing into iCloud on the web.

  1. Go to iCloud.com.
  2. Enter your Apple ID and password to sign in. To find your Mac, make sure you sign in using the same Apple ID that you used on your Mac.
  3. Click Find iPhone.
  4. Enter your Apple ID password.
  5. Click Sign In.

    Click Find iPhone, enter your Apple ID and password, click Sign In

  6. Click All Devices at the top of the page.
  7. Click your Mac in the list of devices.

    Click All Devices, click your Mac in the list

Your Mac will now show up on the map as a green dot, showing its exact location. If it's really nearby (like you think it might be in your house), you can click Play Sound, and it'll ring out. Though, how you'd lose your Mac in your house, I have no idea. The sound will definitely alert whomever has stolen it that you've found it.

How to Lock your Mac

If you're pretty sure you've just lost your Mac and it hasn't been stolen, but you want to make sure no one tries to access its content, you can lock that bad boy down. Just remember, if you lock your Mac remotely, you can't erase it (which you would want to do if you know for sure that it is stolen).

  1. Go to iCloud.com.
  2. Enter your Apple ID and password to sign in. To find your Mac, make sure you sign in using the same Apple ID that you used on your Mac.
  3. Click Find iPhone.
  4. Enter your Apple ID password.
  5. Click Sign In.

    Click Find iPhone, enter your Apple ID and password, click Sign In

  6. Click All Devices at the top of the page.
  7. Click your Mac in the list of devices.

    Click All Devices, click your Mac in the list

  8. Click Lock in the pop-up.
  9. Click Lock to confirm. Remember that once you lock your Mac, you cannot erase it.

    Click Lock, click Lock to confirm

How to erase your Mac

If you're sure your Mac has been stolen, and you're sure you are never getting it back, you should erase the contents so that ne'er-do-wells that might benefit from having your personal data won't have a chance.

  1. Go to iCloud.com.
  2. Enter your Apple ID and password to sign in. To find your Mac, make sure you sign in using the same Apple ID that you used on your Mac.
  3. Click Find iPhone.
  4. Enter your Apple ID password.
  5. Click Sign In.

    Click Find iPhone, enter your Apple ID and password, click Sign In

  6. Click All Devices at the top of the page.
  7. Click your Mac in the list of devices.

    Click All Devices, click your Mac in the list

  8. Click Erase Mac in the pop-up.
  9. Click Erase to confirm. All content and settings will be erased from your Mac, so make sure you're sure.

    Click Erase Mac, click Erase to confirm

Questions?

Got a question about finding your Mac? Let us know in the comments below!

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