reset macOS firmware password

Discussion in 'Mac Basics and Help' started by rich1812, Mar 31, 2017.

  1. rich1812, Mar 31, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2017

    rich1812 macrumors member

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    Oct 4, 2015
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    earth
    #1
    Hi, my friend gave me a Mac pro A1502 EMC 2835. She has forgotten the firmware password and asked me to reset it. Once I reboot the Mac, it shows a big paddock and stops there. She doesn't know whocj mac OS is on it . I tried various methods but does seem be able to get to the place where I can reset the password. I tried common -R, pressed the C key, boot from a external drive... all the same no result. What else can I do? As you know, this is a closed system, I try to avoid to open it and take out the RAM. etc. Any suggestion? Thanks.
     

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  2. keysofanxiety macrumors 604

    keysofanxiety

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2011
    #2
    If they still have the original invoice from Apple (providing they bought it from Apple), you can pop into an Apple Store and they'll remove the firmware password for you.

    Otherwise there's nothing that can be done.
     
  3. Brian Y macrumors 68040

    Joined:
    Oct 21, 2012
    #3
    On the new ones there's no way to reset it other than via Apple. You'll need to take the invoice/proof of purchase to an Apple Store. They can request an unlock code.

    Not quite sure I follow - she was savvy enough to set a firmware password, but not savvy enough to know what version of MacOS is on there?
     
  4. ApfelKuchen macrumors 68030

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    Aug 28, 2012
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    Between the coasts
    #4
    Maybe not savvy enough to set a firmware password? There's a variety of ways a machine may end up with a firmware password that have nothing to do with the end-user, from a corporate/government/education IT department through a "helpful" friend.

    The firmware password is only invoked when trying to boot from anything but the designated startup partition. So, say the firmware password was set when the device was new. That password may not be encountered for years afterwards. Then, someone erases the HDD/deletes the startup partition and then restarts the system before recreating the startup partition... Bang!
     
  5. rich1812, Mar 31, 2017
    Last edited: Mar 31, 2017

    rich1812 thread starter macrumors member

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    #5
    --- Post Merged, Mar 31, 2017 ---
    afaik it was her ex b/f set it. now after a not so amiable broke up he tries to blackmail her with her MacBook Pro! relationship is complicated. sign!:(
     
  6. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Fishrrman

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2009
    #6
    OP:

    If you can't reset it via the Apple Store, there might be one option left (even though it's a shady one).

    Go to ebay, and enter "mac firmware password" into the search box.

    Something there might help you.

    I'm not endorsing this, just informing you that such options exist...
     
  7. smallcoffee macrumors 6502a

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    Oct 15, 2014
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    North America
    #7
    Yeah this sounds fishy to me. Sounds like you or this girl stole it, perhaps from this ex bf.
     
  8. Ulenspiegel macrumors 68030

    Ulenspiegel

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    Land of Flanders and Elsewhere
    #8
    I enjoy this kind of stories.
    Apple Store is the solution. Though, it needs an invoice, which most probably is not in the possession of the "friend".
     
  9. steve23094 macrumors 68000

    steve23094

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2013
    #9
    I have looked into these before because I was curious to see if my own firmware password is safe. The systems employed only work on really old models or if your password is extremely simple (typically four numeric digits). So I was relieved to know I was safe... Unless they have developed something new.
     
  10. 960design macrumors 68020

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    Apr 17, 2012
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    Destin, FL
    #10
    Good on the owner of the original MBPr. Contact Apple with receipt. It can be located at apple.com > account> orders.
    Otherwise return to original owner.
    --- Post Merged, Apr 6, 2017 ---
    Nope... apple locks it with their private key. No way to access 2011+ firmware passwords without Apple's assistance. Anything you see online is on par with wealthy Jamaican prince's that have recently deceased.
     
  11. steve23094 macrumors 68000

    steve23094

    Joined:
    Apr 23, 2013
    #11
    If someone got hold of Apple's key (say a rogue employee) all existing firmware would be compromised?

    If Apple's key is used to legitimately unlock a firmware does it expose the existing key?
     
  12. steve23094 macrumors 68000

    steve23094

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    Apr 23, 2013
    #12
    Does anybody know the answer to this? I'm interested to know.
     
  13. 960design macrumors 68020

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    #13
    No, the key is never exposed. It is contained in a proprietary tool that is connected to the mac.
     
  14. Erdbeertorte macrumors demi-goddess

    Joined:
    May 20, 2015
    #14
    Sorry, I did not read the whole thread. But there is an "easy" way to change the firmware password from a running OS. Maybe it works without the old password but I think not. I can't test it at the moment because mine is deactivated.

    Most of these steps can also be done in the Finder after the first two terminal commands:


    Last login: Sat Apr 22 05:43:05 on ttys001

    JulieBook:~ julie$ defaults write com.apple.Finder AppleShowAllFiles true;killall Finder


    JulieBook:~ julie$ diskutil mount "Recovery HD"

    Volume Recovery HD on Recovery HD mounted


    JulieBook:~ julie$ cd "/Volumes/Recovery HD/com.apple.recovery.boot"

    JulieBook:com.apple.recovery.boot julie$ hdiutil attach BaseSystem.dmg
    Checksumming Protective Master Boot Record (MBR : 0)…
    Protective Master Boot Record (MBR :: verified CRC32 $B0A6E802
    Checksumming GPT Header (Primary GPT Header : 1)…
    GPT Header (Primary GPT Header : 1): verified CRC32 $FBEBFF15
    Checksumming GPT Partition Data (Primary GPT Table : 2)…
    GPT Partition Data (Primary GPT Tabl: verified CRC32 $C0D4266B
    Checksumming (Apple_Free : 3)…
    (Apple_Free : 3): verified CRC32 $00000000
    Checksumming disk image (Apple_HFS : 4)…
    ..................................................................................................................................
    disk image (Apple_HFS : 4): verified CRC32 $768DB39D
    Checksumming (Apple_Free : 5)…
    ..........................................................................................................................................
    (Apple_Free : 5): verified CRC32 $00000000
    Checksumming GPT Partition Data (Backup GPT Table : 6)…
    GPT Partition Data (Backup GPT Table: verified CRC32 $C0D4266B
    Checksumming GPT Header (Backup GPT Header : 7)…
    GPT Header (Backup GPT Header : 7): verified CRC32 $3BC3B3E0
    verified CRC32 $DA553832
    /dev/disk1 GUID_partition_scheme
    /dev/disk1s1 Apple_HFS /Volumes/OS X Base System



    JulieBook:com.apple.recovery.boot julie$ cd "/Volumes/OS X Base System/Applications/Utilities"


    JulieBook:Utilities julie$ open -a "Firmware Password Utility"


    JulieBook:Utilities julie$ exit


    Screen Shot 2017-04-22 at 06.05.39.png
    Screen Shot 2017-04-22 at 06.13.18.png
    Screen Shot 2017-04-22 at 06.12.32.png
     
  15. KALLT macrumors 601

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2008
    #15
    Much too complicated. There is a tool for this:

    Code:
    sudo firmwarepasswd -setpasswd                     # Set a new password
    sudo firmwarepasswd -check                         # Check whether a password is set
    sudo firmwarepasswd -verify                        # Verify your password
    sudo firmwarepasswd -delete                        # Disable the password
     
  16. Fishrrman macrumors G4

    Fishrrman

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    Feb 20, 2009
    #16
  17. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

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    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #17
    I believe that just unlocks an iCloud Find my Mac remote lock PIN (four or six digits like in this screen). OP has a firmware password set and that is entirely different.

    system-lock-PINsm.jpg
     
  18. Weaselboy Moderator

    Weaselboy

    Staff Member

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2005
    Location:
    California
    #18
    I don't believe it works like that where there is any one, master key to be had.

    There is a good article here that explains it and gives the steps below.

    It just removes the password completely and does recover the old password.
     

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