Saturday, August 23, 2008

Resetting/Changing Mac Password

Among the many computers that John owns is a MacBookPro that sits on his bookshelves gathering dust. "Why are you wasting such a beautiful piece of machinery?", I asked. John was embarrassed: "I forgot my password, tried so many different combinations, but none worked."

I searched google, found this article: Mac OS X Password Recovery | Elliot Lee and did the following as instructed:
  1. reboot while pressing Cmd-S
  2. type the following commands at prompt:

    /sbin/fsck -y
    /sbin/mount -uw /

This unfortunately did not work. SystemStarter never returned on this Mac OS X 10.5.x machine and did not respond to ctl-C or ctl-Z. But it turned out that I could change John's password with just two commands:

/sbin/mount -uw /
/usr/bin/passwd john

Here, john was John's username.

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