Got screwed, my macbook has a password on it

GotScrewed

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 17, 2013
12
0
I was looking for a macbook pro, someone advised that I check the local listings on Craigslist.

So I looked around for a couple of days and purchased a macbook pro yesterday from a person on craigslist. He gave me the serial number and the screenshot of the Apple Serial number website he also said there was a firmware issue and Apple Care would cover it and provide information to fix it.

I called Apple I wanted to make sure it was not stolen, or had any other issues. The representative Chrise whom I spoke with at Applecare informed me that the computer was clean, and had not been flagged for any reason. She also informed me that the computer had 3 years of Apple Care and that I should have no problems till it ran out. In fact she even emailed me a link for the firmware unlock which she said would be simple to fix.

Yesterday feeling better that I was making a safe purchase, I met the seller at a Target and bought the computer. He showed me that Office, Internet and everything worked. Today I tried installing something and its asking for an admin password.

I tried to get in touch with the seller, no trace of him and the cell number.

What do I do? What if its stolen or something?
 

john123

macrumors 68030
Jul 20, 2001
2,500
1,345
The theft concerns you raise are real, and unfortunately for that reason, you won't be able to get the answers you're requesting here. I'm sorry. However, if you call AppleCare (like you did before the sale) and inform them of what's going on, they should be more than happy to help you out.

Best of luck.
 

bds120

macrumors member
Nov 26, 2013
77
0
I was looking for a macbook pro, someone advised that I check the local listings on Craigslist.

So I looked around for a couple of days and purchased a macbook pro yesterday from a person on craigslist. He gave me the serial number and the screenshot of the Apple Serial number website he also said there was a firmware issue and Apple Care would cover it and provide information to fix it.

I called Apple I wanted to make sure it was not stolen, or had any other issues. The representative Chrise whom I spoke with at Applecare informed me that the computer was clean, and had not been flagged for any reason. She also informed me that the computer had 3 years of Apple Care and that I should have no problems till it ran out. In fact she even emailed me a link for the firmware unlock which she said would be simple to fix.

Yesterday feeling better that I was making a safe purchase, I met the seller at a Target and bought the computer. He showed me that Office, Internet and everything worked. Today I tried installing something and its asking for an admin password.

I tried to get in touch with the seller, no trace of him and the cell number.

What do I do? What if its stolen or something?
Had the same thing happen to me when I bought it used. Had to run something like this. Worked like a charm

Make sure the you do not space in between the db/.Apple and use capital letters where they are in the code and it will work

# Reboot
# Hold apple + s down after you hear the chime.
# When you get text prompt enter in these terminal commands to create a brand new admin account (hitting return after each line):

* mount -uw /
* rm /var/db/.AppleSetupDone
* shutdown -h now

# After rebooting you should have a brand new admin account. When you login as the new admin you can simply delete the old one and you're good to go again!
 

GotScrewed

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 17, 2013
12
0
This will work for macbook pro retina?

Had the same thing happen to me when I bought it used. Had to run something like this. Worked like a charm

Make sure the you do not space in between the db/.Apple and use capital letters where they are in the code and it will work

# Reboot
# Hold apple + s down after you hear the chime.
# When you get text prompt enter in these terminal commands to create a brand new admin account (hitting return after each line):

* mount -uw /
* rm /var/db/.AppleSetupDone
* shutdown -h now

# After rebooting you should have a brand new admin account. When you login as the new admin you can simply delete the old one and you're good to go again!
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G4
Jul 30, 2003
10,213
2,685
Delaware
You will need to, at the very least, change the admin password.
Easiest way to do this is to boot to the installer DVD, and run Reset Password from the menu.

You may have a newer OS X version, 10.7 or later, which means that it's even easier, by booting to the Recovery partition, and run Terminal, where you can run the command resetpassword.
This article will explain: http://osxdaily.com/2010/08/10/forgot-mac-password-how-to-reset-mac-password/

HOWEVER, more importantly, if you already know that the previous owner left you without clearing out the password, then you ALSO don't know if the system is really complete, or could even have malware installed for some devious purpose. There's some concern there, and most folks will recommend that your NEXT task is to erase the hard drive, and reinstall the system. Forget about the commercial apps (such as MS Office) as you don't own the license to use them.
The erase and reinstall is the only way to assure that you can use your "new" Mac without worrying about what someone else may have done before they sold this to you….
 

GotScrewed

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 17, 2013
12
0
You might find it funny but before today I have never used an apple mac before so I have no clue what you said below. Could you guide me in more detail?

The only thing I ever owned from Apple was an iphone.


Yes, it will work.


----------

This is the new one without the DVD drive



You will need to, at the very least, change the admin password.
Easiest way to do this is to boot to the installer DVD, and run Reset Password from the menu.

You may have a newer OS X version, 10.7 or later, which means that it's even easier, by booting to the Recovery partition, and run Terminal, where you can run the command resetpassword.
This article will explain: http://osxdaily.com/2010/08/10/forgot-mac-password-how-to-reset-mac-password/

HOWEVER, more importantly, if you already know that the previous owner left you without clearing out the password, then you ALSO don't know if the system is really complete, or could even have malware installed for some devious purpose. There's some concern there, and most folks will recommend that your NEXT task is to erase the hard drive, and reinstall the system. Forget about the commercial apps (such as MS Office) as you don't own the license to use them.
The erase and reinstall is the only way to assure that you can use your "new" Mac without worrying about what someone else may have done before they sold this to you….
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G4
Jul 30, 2003
10,213
2,685
Delaware
The step
Hold apple + s down after you hear the chime.
is wrong on Mac keyboards for the last 4 or 5 years. There's no Apple key.
The corrected line should be " Hold Command-S down after you hear the chime"
That will boot you into "single-user mode", which is similar to a command line, and you just type in the rest of the commands.

And, that does NOT eliminate the security concerns that you should still remember. IMHO, the hard drive should be completely erased/reinstalled before you actually begin to use it.
 

GotScrewed

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 17, 2013
12
0
After the chime, I held command + s down but nothing happened, the apple logo flickered and then booted to main screen with icons.

What am I doing wrong?

The step
is wrong on Mac keyboards for the last 4 or 5 years. There's no Apple key.
The corrected line should be " Hold Command-S down after you hear the chime"
That will boot you into "single-user mode", which is similar to a command line, and you just type in the rest of the commands.

And, that does NOT eliminate the security concerns that you should still remember. IMHO, the hard drive should be completely erased/reinstalled before you actually begin to use it.
 

GotScrewed

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 17, 2013
12
0
Maybe I didnt explain it right... Once the chime happened, I quickly pressed Command + S, the apple logo flickered and went to the screen with all the pretty icons, like safari, Firefox and Office.

I pressed Command + R by mistake in one try and its showing a picture of a lock

I am so sorry if I sound like a layman but I confessed, I have never used mac before. My machine doesnt have the DVD drive nor do I have the external drive. What to do?

Good, then you will be able to boot to the recovery system without problems. You can erase the system partition from there, using the Disk Utility, then reinstall OS X.
Here's more info about the recovery system, and how to erase and reinstall OS X on newer Macs: http://support.apple.com/kb/HT5943
 

Gav2k

macrumors G3
Jul 24, 2009
9,217
1,606
Your computer has the efi password enabled so all of the above cannot be done. You need to visit apple to have it removed
 

DeltaMac

macrumors G4
Jul 30, 2003
10,213
2,685
Delaware
Gav2k is exactly correct.
You will need to take your MBPro to either a "genius", or an Apple-authorized service shop. They have the only method to clear a firmware password. The problem is that you can't boot to anything else without clearing that password - or somehow finding out what that password is from the original owner.
And, more info here: http://support.apple.com/kb/TS3554
 

SVT Amateur

macrumors 6502
Dec 22, 2006
421
1
Tyler, Texas
Good luck OP, but the EFI password is concerning because this means either the laptop was stolen and the person who stole it didn't know the password or the person who sold it to you forgot to unlock it. Since one has to be intentional about setting the EFI password (Apple doesn't ask you to use one when setting up the OS) I find it hard to believe that the seller *forgot* to unlock it. Also, you stated you can't get in touch with the seller which leads me to believe even more that it is stolen.

You can definitely try taking to an Apple store but unless you have some proof that you are now the true owner of the laptop they aren't going to do anything for you - or let me say they shouldn't do anything for you.
 

lawhuiyiu

macrumors newbie
May 16, 2006
19
0
If you have screwdrivers, unscrew all the screws on the bottom case. Then remove the battery connector, and then swop those 2 memory modules.

After that, re-connect the battery connector and close the bottom case. Power on the unit again, and press 'Command' + 's' to start the single user mode.
 

GotScrewed

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 17, 2013
12
0
I have a text and email from the Craigslist guy about our meeting thats all I have as proof of my deal. What can be done now?

Has anyone else faced this issue?


Good luck OP, but the EFI password is concerning because this means either the laptop was stolen and the person who stole it didn't know the password or the person who sold it to you forgot to unlock it. Since one has to be intentional about setting the EFI password (Apple doesn't ask you to use one when setting up the OS) I find it hard to believe that the seller *forgot* to unlock it. Also, you stated you can't get in touch with the seller which leads me to believe even more that it is stolen.

You can definitely try taking to an Apple store but unless you have some proof that you are now the true owner of the laptop they aren't going to do anything for you - or let me say they shouldn't do anything for you.
 

SVT Amateur

macrumors 6502
Dec 22, 2006
421
1
Tyler, Texas
If you have screwdrivers, unscrew all the screws on the bottom case. Then remove the battery connector, and then swop those 2 memory modules.

After that, re-connect the battery connector and close the bottom case. Power on the unit again, and press 'Command' + 's' to start the single user mode.
This isn't going to work on a rMBP. The password is located in lockable flash memory that isn't going to unlock based upon a hardware change and it isn't store in the PRAM - so the swapping of memory won't unlock it.
 

chrfr

macrumors G3
Jul 11, 2009
9,507
3,398
This isn't going to work on a rMBP. The password is located in lockable flash memory that isn't going to unlock based upon a hardware change and it isn't store in the PRAM - so the swapping of memory won't unlock it.
Fortunately, this no longer even works on Macs with removable RAM, as of the Early 2011 Macbook Pros.
 

GotScrewed

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 17, 2013
12
0
Now that you guys have me worried that it might be stolen... I've lost my entire appetite for going to the Apple Store because more than making this operational I am more interested in checking whether this is stolen? Whats the first step to do? How can I check this? Do I report to the police?

Please help me in this regard guys?

Make a Genius appointment at Apple, that's your only option.
 

AlphaDogg

macrumors 68040
May 20, 2010
3,415
6
Boulder, CO
Could the lock that the OP is seeing be the iCloud remote lock my mac feature? I've never used that feature, so it's just a thought. (My main MBP has an SSD RAID which doesn't allow for multiple partitions, including the recovery partition)
 

Quu

macrumors 68030
Apr 2, 2007
2,955
4,749
Go to an Apple Store and have them help you. If it is stolen maybe they can get it back to its original owner.

I know it sucks that you may be potentially out a lot of money but that is what you get for buying from Craiglist, this is a good life lesson.
 

john123

macrumors 68030
Jul 20, 2001
2,500
1,345
Now that you guys have me worried that it might be stolen... I've lost my entire appetite for going to the Apple Store because more than making this operational I am more interested in checking whether this is stolen? Whats the first step to do? How can I check this? Do I report to the police?

Please help me in this regard guys?
You state that you're concerned about it being stolen, and that's actually a reason TO go to the Apple Store.

----------

I know it sucks that you may be potentially out a lot of money but that is what you get for buying from Craiglist, this is a good life lesson.
Eh, I don't think it's fair to knock Craigslist. Savvy buyers can certainly take precautions to minimize their chances of getting burned.
 

GotScrewed

macrumors newbie
Original poster
Dec 17, 2013
12
0
I only see a lock image with a text box beneath it when i press command +r --- otherwise the macbook is running ok, i tried the browser and office installed---

and i am asked for a user name and password when i try to access the app store



could the lock that the op is seeing be the icloud remote lock my mac feature? I've never used that feature, so it's just a thought. (my main mbp has an ssd raid which doesn't allow for multiple partitions, including the recovery partition)


----------

I agree, I should go now to the Apple Store to check it out. What happens if it is actually stolen? Do I get in to trouble? I have lived a clean life and dont want any marks on my civil record, If yes I could get in to trouble then I'd rather just throw the laptop in the dump

Secondly about the craigslist saviness, he made me check the serial on my iphone, it showed as Apple Care till Early 2016, it showed apple support is on, it showed the purchase was vlid or something, then he plugged in the charger and showed it charged, then he played music and a vidoe clip, sound was fine, he even opened up a website to show me wifi was working. So i actually felt very satisfied after his "Demo"

Its later when I got time this afternoon at home and tried to install something for which I had to go to the App Store, thats when it asked for a password and I tried posting at various sites including this one, is when you guys are making me nervous about it being stolen.



You state that you're concerned about it being stolen, and that's actually a reason TO go to the Apple Store.

----------



Eh, I don't think it's fair to knock Craigslist. Savvy buyers can certainly take precautions to minimize their chances of getting burned.
 

jonathan.c

macrumors newbie
May 16, 2013
28
0
Canada
You are getting computer login and Apple ID login mixed up.

You need an Apple ID to download things for the Mac App Store and to use features such as iCloud and other Apple web services (iTunes store, etc.)

And for your admin password situation, you'll need to re-install OS X to get start fresh. Many guides are available such as: http://support.apple.com/kb/PH10763?viewlocale=en_US&locale=en_US

And if that doesn't work, create a bootable USB with OS X on it and go from there. http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/ap...how-to-create-a-bootable-usb-to-install-os-x/
 
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