Previous 1 2 Next 17 Replies Latest reply: Apr 22, 2016 8:36 PM by Sasha 2016
Butterflyblue70 Level 1 Level 1

I changed my IMac admin password and have now forgotten in and can't find my originàl discs to reset it. I understand you can reset it using apple ID but I can't work it out.  Can someone help me

  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10

    Forgot Your Account Password


    For Snow Leopard and earlier


         Mac OS X 10.6- If you forget your administrator password


    For Lion/Mountain Lion


        Boot to the Recovery HD:


    Restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the COMMAND and R keys until the menu screen appears. Alternatively, restart the computer and after the chime press and hold down the OPTION key until the boot manager screen appears. Select the Recovery HD and click on the downward pointing arrow button.


         When the menubar appears select Terminal from the Utilities menu.

         Enter resetpassword at the prompt and press RETURN. Follow

         instructions in the dialog window that will appear.


         Or see Reset a Mac OS X 10.7 Lion Password and

         OS X Lion- Apple ID can be used to reset your user account password.


    If you are unable to boot from an installer DVD:


    (these will only work on Leopard or earlier)


      1. Boot to Safe Mode by restarting and after the chime press and hold down

          the COMMAND-S keys until a black screen with white type appears.


      2. At the prompt, type the following commands pressing return after each

          command line:


         /sbin/fsck -yf


         If you do not receive a "Filesystem OK" message then repeat this command

         until you do.  If after seven tries you still do not receive a "Filesystem OK"

         message, then the system is corrupted and needs to be reinstalled.


         mount -uw /

         cd /private/var/db/netinfo

         mv local.nidb local.old

         rm ../.AppleSetupDone

         shutdown -r now


    The second-to-last command above will cause OS X to think that the operating system is newly installed, and when the new owner starts up the computer it will send him/her to the startup wizard where he/she can start a new user without reinstalling.


    This last method does not actually change a password. It simply removes the user accounts and lets you create an initial admin account as if the computer were new out of the box.


    Reset Admin Password Using The Terminal


    You can reset the password by printing out (or writing down) and carefully following these steps.


    First, find the short name of the admin user on the machine. The easiest way of doing this is by looking at what the directory is called in the Users folder.


    Now, start in Single-user Mode. It should boot into a command line.


    Enter these exact lines. Press RETURN after each.


    mount -uw /

    ifconfig lo0 up

    cd /var/db/netinfo

    netinfod -s local


    Now you'll need that short name. Enter "passwd", a space, and the short name of the admin. For example, if the admin was rather prosaically called "imadmin", you would enter "passwd imadmin".


    The computer will now prompt you to change the password for "lmadmin" (or whatever the short name was). Go ahead and enter a new password.


    Now, enter:





    and the machine will reboot. The admin password should now be changed.

  • Sam Hayder Level 1 Level 1



    I just tried to do the

    Reset Admin Password Using The Terminal

    However when I get to

    cd /var/db/netinfo



    I get: No Such file or directory.



    Any ideas?



  • Kappy Level 10 Level 10

    Version of OS X, please? Also, see:



    For Snow Leopard and earlier without installer DVD


        How to reset your Mac OS X password without an installer disc | MacYourself

  • Sam Hayder Level 1 Level 1

    It was a 10.5.7 Machine. I've managed to sort it now, found an external dvd drive to use as the internal one is dead.

  • rainer217 Level 1 Level 1

    I have a 10.8.2 software and i hold OPTION (alt) key and went to a recovery page and i clicked on my hard drive that i used, but i immediately shut down my laptop because i wasent sure if if will deletes all my files, if i doesent the pls reply cause i also lost my admin password thanks.

  • amirrahim Level 1 Level 1

    Yes, thanks, Kappy!


    The MacYourself link gave me great advice to reset the password from Terminal. Worked great!


    Tricking your Mac into creating a new user account

        1.    Power on or restart your Mac (should work for any Mac OS X system).

        2.    At the chime (or grey screen if your chime is turned off), hold down Command+S on your keyboard to enter single-user mode.

        3.    This step is optional, but it’s a good idea because it checks the consistency of the hard disk before moving on. At the prompt, type fsck -fy and press Enter/Return. Wait for the checks to complete before going to the next step.

        4.    Type mount -uw / and press Enter.

        5.    Type rm /var/db/.AppleSetupDone and press Enter.

        6.    Type shutdown -h now and press Enter.

    The third method of resetting your Mac’s password requires some additional explanation. Rather than simply changing the password like the previous two methods do, this one fools the operating system into believing it has never been started before. This means when you restart the machine, it will take you through the entire setup & registration process all over again. Do not worry, all of your pre-existing data is still available. Just continue with this process and do not choose the option to transfer or migrate information to the Mac.

    Once you’re done, log in with your new admin account and go to System Preferences > Accounts. You may have to click on the lock icon in the lower-left corner before making changes here. You should see your original user account(s) in the left column. Try clicking on one of them to convert it to a standard user account (uncheck “Allow user to administer this computer”) and change the password. You should be able to successfully log in to that account now and access all of your files and programs. If you want, you can log back in with your new admin account and re-check the “Allow user to administer this computer” option in System Preferences to grant admin privileges to the original user again.

    That should cover it! As always, remember messing with single-user mode and Terminal is risky and may lead to trouble if you make mistakes. Considering you’re already locked out of the computer, though, you’ll probably be willing to take your chances at this point.

    One last thing… if you have a Keychain Access password, you will probably need to reset that as well. You can do this by selecting “login” under Keychains on the left and choosing Delete from the Edit menu. You’ll lose everything in the Keychain, but you’ll now be able to start fresh and add new ones.


    Message was edited by: amirrahim

  • edmineck Level 1 Level 1

    Thank you !! perfect

  • jacqdunn Level 1 Level 1

    Thanks Kappy.  I now have access to my computer, but had to start new keychain.  Any way to retrieve the old one ?

  • jasonsteven1212 Level 1 Level 1

    This got my hopes up when I discovered my problem this morning. My 'e' key, 'd' and 3 key dont work. I cannot use tge root commands and bypass the loggin password which contains both 3 and e.

  • nsbreaks Level 1 Level 1

    none of these options seem to work on my system. iMac4,1, OSX Tiger. The computer doesn't respond to any startup keystrokes. It might hang for a few extra seconds while I hold the keys but it innevitably boots as per usual. I've started paying with 'target disk mode'... can I migrate an older macbook system onto the imac without the imac password?

  • Kram97 Level 1 Level 1

    I tried this method on my Nan's iMac and when I did it I lost power in our house and our neighbours. I believe it is a coincidence, but it did happen the EXACT moment I started this so I am just making sure. The computer wasn't damaged, thankfully, so I'm checking if it's safe to do it again.

  • Samuniverse Level 1 Level 1

    1)shut down the macbook.

    2) press power button and within 2 seconds press apple logo (command) button + s together

    3)wait for some time 10 seconds until the screen becomes full of numbers and text on black screen.

    4)you will get something like root#

    5) then type (please note that there is space between some words)

    mount -uw /

    (press enter)

    launchctl load /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/

    (press enter)

    ls /Users ( ie first letter is small letter of 'L'  )

    (press enter)

    dscl . -passwd /Users/username password (ie replace username with the username which needs the password to be changed and then  space and type the new password)

    (press enter)


    macbook will restart, then type the new password and press enter then  click set new keychain password, finished you have set the new password. None of your data is affected.

  • tarrmatt101 Level 1 Level 1

    I have tried all of this and it still would not allow me reset my password. It told me the command and directory could not be found.

  • Applepunk Level 1 Level 1

    I'm looking at this question about forgot password I have the same situation forgot password. Do still have access to all your files and iPhoto once you try this?

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