How do I reset an administrator password in OS X?

Keychain Access is the application OS X uses to store all your passwords, both for your Mac itself and any third party applications or sites that you ask it to remember your details for. However, if you’ve forgotten your administrator password, it can be reset.

If you’re running OS X 10.7 Lion or later:

1.   You won’t be able to see the passwords saved in your keychain after your admin password has been reset, so if you can remember any, make a note of them now!

2.   Restart your Mac while holding down Command and R, so you boot to the Recovery partition.

3.   In the window that comes up, open Terminal Utility and type resetpassword (all one word, no quotation marks).

4.   Reset Password Utility will open. Select your hard drive from the list that appears.

5.   Select your account. Input your new admin password. Click save. You now have a new admin password and have created a new login keychain. Restart your computer again. You’re done!

If you’re running OS X 10.6 Snow Leopard or earlier:

1.   You won’t be able to see the passwords saved in your keychain after your admin password has been reset, so if you can remember any, make a note of them now!

2.   Stick your OS X installation disc into your computer and start it up while holding down the C key.

3.   Select your language preferences when prompted.

4.   Once you get to your desktop, select Go in the top menu, then Utilities, then Password Reset.

5.   Select the drive and user that you need to create a new password for, then enter a new password when prompted.

6.   Reboot your computer and log in using your new password.

Liz
Liz
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