Help with creating a user account

Discussion in 'iMac' started by Garryg, Jun 2, 2011.

  1. Garryg, Jun 2, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011

    Garryg macrumors newbie

    Jul 29, 2009
    I’ve just acquired a second-hand iMac 1. It is booting up to the desktop but the user account it is logged in with has a password, and I don’t know this, or the supervisor password.

    Is there any way I can create a user account for myself, or change the password for the logged in account without knowing it… I’m assuming not.

    Is my only option to re-install the operating system?
    This could be a slight problem as I don’t have the disks.

    I can probably get some system disks, but as you probably guessed I’m pretty new to new Macs (I still have my classic though) so do I need some sort of install key to re-install the operating system?

    I’m not trying to do anything illegal here. The current op is valid, and I would just be re-loading the same version, so I can get a clean install.
  2. reclusive46 macrumors 65816


    Apr 14, 2011
    The only way you can do it is with the discs for that iMac.
  3. Garryg thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 29, 2009
    Ah, well that could be a problem. It’s an ex-college machine so I probably won’t be able to get the exact disks it was originally installed from.

    So how does installing a Mac OS work? Do the install disks each have a unique serial number or something?

    Does this mean I would have to purchase a new version of Mac OS to reinstall!?

    I suppose that as long as I don’t log out I can continue using the desktop that is currently up.

    Do you need to know the user passwords to install new apps, as it asked me for the password when it tried to do a systems update.
  4. Mitthrawnuruodo Moderator emeritus


    Mar 10, 2004
    Bergen, Norway
    ...or a retail Mac OS X install disk.

    If you can boot from the restore disks that came with that (or similar) iMac or any Mac OS X install disc (newer than the iMac) you'll be able to reset the password on any existing accounts (and then you can log in and create new ones for yourself).

    Edit: See the "Resetting the original administrator account password" section here:
  5. Garryg, Jun 2, 2011
    Last edited: Jun 2, 2011

    Garryg thread starter macrumors newbie

    Jul 29, 2009
    Thanks, it isn’t a hopeless as I first thought then!

    I’ll just have to try and get hold of some disks.

    Will the Snow Leopard OS work on an origonal un-updated IMac G3?
    If not, what is the best/newest OS this machine will run?

    It may just be as easy to get my own version of the OS if I cant get the original install disk.
  6. Kasalic macrumors regular

    Jan 20, 2011
    Snow Leopard (10.6) will not run on a G3 iMac, it needs an Intel processor. Running Leopard (10.5) could be an option, but I'd check how much ram it has first. Failing that you're back to running 10.4 (Tiger).

    I run Leopard on a 1GHz G4 Powerbook with 1GB ram and it's ok, not fast by any means but usable for general internet and stuff.

    Using a Leopard or Tiger boot disk you should be able to reset the user account password without knowing it, select 'Reset Password' from the Utilities menu IIRC.

    If you could get hold of a copy of Leopard you can install straight from that but you would probably lose all the existing apps as you would have to do a clean install.

    One last problem with any of these solutions, could be if the previous owners put a firmware password on the system. If they have then you will not be able to boot from an DVD/external drive without this password.

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