How to change the username?

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by chaoticbear, Feb 12, 2011.

  1. chaoticbear macrumors 6502

    Jul 25, 2007
    I recently got a new MBA, and migrated some files and settings from my old MB. I haven't been able to figure out how to change my username, though. It used to be my real name, and now, it has changed to my Apple ID for some reason. Any way to fix it, short of a reinstall?

    Attached Files:

  2. Velin macrumors 65816


    Jul 23, 2008
    Hearst Castle
    Don't try to "change" the name of the user or your home folder. That will create problems, especially with updates and installs that look for the home folder. Better to create a new user with the name you want, migrate your data, and delete the old account. Do this:

    For Mac OS X 10.5 or later

    Enable the root user.

    Log in as root.

    Navigate to the /Users folder.

    Select the Home folder with the short name you want to change, and rename it just like you would rename any folder. Keep in mind that the shortname must be all lowercase, with no spaces, and only contain letters.

    Use the Accounts pane in System Preferences to create a new user with the short name that you used in the previous step.

    Click OK when "A folder in the Users folder already has the name 'short name'. Would you like to use that folder as the Home folder for this user account?" Note: This will correct the ownership of all files in the Home folder, and avoid permissions issues with the contents.

    Choose Log Out from the Apple menu.

    Log in as the newly created user. You should be able to access all of your original files (on the desktop, in Documents, and in the other folders of this Home).

    After verifying that your data is as expected, you can delete the original user account via the Accounts pane of System Preferences.

    Disable the root user.

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