Reset Mac OS X Password

Did You Forget Your Mac’s Password? Steps To Reset Your Mac Password

So you have forgotten the password on your Mac … oops… This can happen to even the most seasoned Mac user, and it can stop any Mac user dead in their tracks. Don’t worry, this is a very common thing that happens if it happens to you, try the below options to reset your password.

Reset Mac Password – Without a CD

Using the Single User Mode you can do a pretty cool trick to reset a forgotten Mac password without having a Mac OS X installer CD/DVD. These steps may seem a little scary at first but rest assured, they are easy if you follow them exactly.

Part 1



1) Restart your Mac while holding down the Command and S keys. You will boot up in Single User Mode and into the Terminal interface.


Keep holding the keys down until you see a bunch of white code scrolling down the black screen. At this point you can release the keys, awesome! You are now in Single User mode. You can continue when you see localhost:/ root#, as the very last line of code on the screen.

2) You will have to check the filesystem, in order to complete this, type:
fsck -fy
3) Next, you will have to mount the root drive as writeable to save the changes by typing:
mount -uw /
4) This next step removes the .applesetupdone file and must be followed exactly, type the following command and then hit the enter key:
rm /var/db/.applesetupdone
5) Then you will need to reboot your Mac by typing ‘reboot’ and then hitting enter.
When you delete the .applesetupdone file, you are making Mac OS X run the setup wizard again. The setup wizard process by default creates a new user account with Administrator capabilities. This new user can then reset the password for any of the other users on the Mac. This is obviously a great trick if you have lost your Mac OS X installer CD/DVD or it is not around.

Part 2

Creating a New User Account

You are almost done and the hard part is over now – no more crazy command lines! From this point on you will be working in the usual Mac OS X GUI interface to complete the password reset process.



In this part you will create a new user account as though you are booting a new Mac for the first time:

• When you first reboot your computer, you will be taken through the “Welcome Wizard” startup screen just like when you first purchase and boot into a Mac.

• Go through the welcome wizard process and create a new user account – make sure to make the new account name different from the original account.

• Now boot into Mac OS X with your new user account. The new user account will be an Administrator and so it will have administrative access.

Part 3

Reset the Password Using System Preferences

Ok, we are rounding the final bend; next you will need to reset the user account password. You can do this using the Accounts control panel:


• Boot into Mac OS X, click on the Apple logo and then choose the System Preferences option.

• Choose the Accounts icon once you are in System Preferences.

• Click on the Lock in the lower left hand corner of the window and enter the new user credentials, this will allow you to change any other user accounts and reset the other users passwords.

• On the left side user panel, select the user account that has the forgotten password.

• Next click the Reset Password button.

• You can now enter a new password for that user.

• Close System Preferences and restart your Mac.

• You will now be able to login to this user account using the new password. All the user files and settings will be the same as before.

• Last step: It would be a good idea for you to delete the temporary account you created to reset the users password for security purposes.

Part 4

Reset Mac Password – Using Mac OS X Installer CD/DVD


• Have the OS X installer disk inserted into your DVD drive and boot your Mac up while holding down the C key. This will boot your computer from the Mac OS X installer disk instead of the hard drive.

• You will have to first select your language preferences then under the Utilities menu select Password Reset.

• Pick the hard disk that has the admin account with the forgotten password. Next select the username of the account with the forgotten password, and you will be asked to pick a new password.

• Create a new password.

• Reboot your Mac and you will be able to use your new password now when you login.