How do I change my short name?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by macgeek2005, May 26, 2006.

  1. macgeek2005 macrumors 65816

    Jan 31, 2006
    We just bought a used 800mhz G4 iMac for $375 and I changed the user name to my name, and changed the password to my password (it was set on nothing), but I can't change the short name. It's "defaultmacuser", and I want it to be something else... how do I change it?

  2. aquajet macrumors 68020

    Feb 12, 2005
    I don't believe you can, aside from some terminal voodoo I'm not aware of. You'll have to create a new user account if you want a different short name.
  3. yellow Moderator emeritus


    Oct 21, 2003
    Portland, OR
    You can, but it's (IMO) slightly dangerous.

    Here's Apple's take on it:

    You might be better off creating a new account with the proper username and then moving your data over to the new user (while logged in a root), and then changing the permissions on all the moved data so it's owned by your new user. This is how Apple's take on it works.

    However, here's a script and whatnot on changing shortusername:
  4. macgeek2005 thread starter macrumors 65816

    Jan 31, 2006
    I erased the drive and am currently reinstalling the system.

    Thanks for the help.
  5. yellow Moderator emeritus


    Oct 21, 2003
    Portland, OR
    Whoa. No need for that. But I guess that's one way to do it. :)
  6. jeremy.king macrumors 603


    Jul 23, 2002
    Fuquay Varina, NC
    I would have done it anyway on a used machine...Never can be too sure of what someone did to it ;)
  7. yellow Moderator emeritus


    Oct 21, 2003
    Portland, OR
    LOL.. see what I get for not reading the post?

    I just read the Thread Title and responded.

    I concur, wiping and reinstalling the is the ONLY way to know that you have a "safe, "good" install of OS X on a used Mac.
  8. munckee macrumors 65816

    Oct 27, 2005
    How do I change the regular user name (not the short name)?

    I'm getting a G3 ready to sell. I did a clean install, but for some stupid reason, I used my name for the user name and I'd like to change that before I sell it.
  9. jelloshotsrule macrumors G3


    Feb 7, 2002
    i've always wondered if there was a way to install the OS and not set up user info before selling a machine, so it's like it is when you get it from apple... i guess just install the OS and don't actually start back up with the set up stuff?

    you can create a second account with something like "user" and then just delete the first account with your name.
  10. MacBoyX macrumors 6502


    Jan 3, 2003
    East Coast, USA
    Whenever I rebuild a machine, I always create a user (usually named setup), and do all my installs/updates and then reseal the OS. This not only gets the setup user off but it lets the new owner have that "first time run" experience with OS X.

    To do so... after you've done everything, shut down the Mac.
    Turn it back on and hold the CMD(Apple) Key and the S key, this puts you into Single user mode (UNIX).
    Once the machine has booted to a Unix prompt type:
    mount -uw /
    rm -Rf /Users/username
    rm /var/db/.applesetupdone
    shutdown -h now

    Make sure you subsitute USERNAME for the name of the user you created. Now in 10.2 and 10.3 this works perfect in 10.4, the user's files are gone but sometimes... the user is still listed in the Accounts Pref Pane.
    The First line mounts the hard drive.
    The Second line deletes the user files
    The Third line removes the file that signals to OS X that the setup has been run.
    The Last line unmounts the hd and shuts down the Mac.

    If you turn the Mac back on and are stuck in the setup, just press CMD(Apple) Key and the Q key to quit. OS X will give you the option to Shut Down.

    Hope that helps!

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