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macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 7, 2012
HELP! I was doing some clean up and organizing and renamed my user somehow and then could not access my desktop files, ical, act! Everything is lost but searchable through spotlight? I can see the files under the old name but when I click on them it says I do not have permission? Its like they lost their identity? What can I do?


macrumors G5
Jun 6, 2003
Solon, OH
This is why you should NEVER try and rename your user folder. What you experienced is exactly what will happen.

Assuming you have administrator rights on the Mac, the permissions issues this causes aren't hard to fix. There are two ways to go about this: the Finder Get Info method, and the Terminal method.
Finder method:
  1. In the Finder, perform a Get Info on your user/home folder.
  2. Expand the Ownership and Permissions section.
  3. Unlock things, providing your password when prompted.
  4. Change the owner to your new user name.
  5. When prompted to apply this to all enclosing files and folders, say Yes.

Terminal method:
  1. Start the Terminal.
  2. It should default to your home folder, but if it doesn't type cd ~ to go there.
  3. Execute the following command: sudo chown -R your new short user name ~ (replacing your new short user name accordingly)
  4. You'll be prompted for your password. Note that you will NOT be able to see what you're typing - this is normal, and is done for security.

Once either method has been used, spot-check things to make sure you can access them again.


macrumors newbie
Original poster
Jun 7, 2012
User Lost

I had two users on my macbook pro. The admin account was not the problem it was the other account a lost all my photo's, ical, ect. I logged into the admin and went the "get info" route and gave full permissions to all the users but did not rename anything. I logged back into to user account 2 and still have nothing :/ When I am logged in as admin I can see the old account, admin account, and the new blank account. Need to figure out how to get the old account and blank account synced back together?


macrumors 603
Jan 6, 2002
OP, are you running Lion or Snow Leopard/earlier?

First, move all the files into the properly renamed user folder (should match the name shown in System Preferences.

For Lion, reboot and hold Cmd-R to boot from the Recovery Partition/Internet Recovery. Once it loads, choose Utilities -> Terminal from the menu bar, then type "resetpassword" without the quotes and hit enter.

For Snow Leopard and earlier versions, insert your OS install disk and reboot while holding C, then when it loads, choose a language and then choose Utilities -> Reset Password from the menu bar.

For both: Choose your drive at the top of the Reset Password utility's window, then the user account which is having trouble from the drop down menu. At the bottom of the window, choose Reset home directory permissions and ACL's.. That step should fix the issue.



macrumors newbie
Sep 16, 2012
Selecting Multiple Items not Consecutive

hold down Command+Shift will do the trick… this answer might have been answered but I just wanted to make sure. I use it to delete duplicates in iTunes...
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