Resetting password - short user name needed

Discussion in 'macOS' started by Bebbs, Jul 4, 2007.

  1. Bebbs macrumors newbie

    May 4, 2007
    A while ago I asked for help to get some files, including a will, from the Mac of my terminally ill friend. I got some very helpful answers, but I still need some help.

    The story so far is that my friend's illness meant he couldn't remember his login password. Using the suggested Target mode and Firewire link to another Mac, we copied off the word processing documents so we could access his will.

    We also found a list of music and pictures he wanted burned to a CD for the mourners at his funeral, which will happen soon as he died on Monday. But we still don't know his password.

    We had bought OSX 10.1 discs (he didn't upgrade from the OSX 1.1 supplied on his early white iBook) but couldn't boot from them to reset the password as his CD drive seems not to work.

    We also tried restarting in 'single user mode', but resetting the password that way entails us knowing the 'short user name' for his account, which we didn't know and can't work out.

    So would these ideas work to discover the short user name of one of his accounts?

    1. Does the folder tree for each user start from a folder labelled with the short user name? If so, would we be able to use Target mode to find that folder's name?

    2. Is there a preference file for user accounts that we could copy using Target mode, then open in a text editor to discover the short user name? If so, what would that file be called in OSX 10.1, and where would it be found? And would any text editor/word processor open the file if it was given the relevant suffix?

    Or, if they don't work,

    3. Could we use Target mode to copy his entire iTunes and iPhoto libraries to a new user account on my Mac (PowerBook G4), and would my OSX 10.4.10 be able to use the preferences in his OSX 10.1 libraries to recreate his play lists and pic albums so we can find the stuff he wants burning to CD?

    Any help and advice would be much appreciated.

    Simon Bebbington
  2. mad jew Moderator emeritus

    mad jew

    Apr 3, 2004
    Adelaide, Australia
    Okay, there are two options for you. You hit the nail on the head when you mentioned a folder with the same name as the short user name. When you were looking at the Documents or whichever aspect you were ripping files from earlier with Target Disk Mode, hold COMMAND and click on the title in the Finder window. It'll give you the folder path of the folder you're looking at. The short username should be the word/name just above Users in the list. :)

    Alternatively, copy across the iTunes folder and the iPhoto Library folder. Within these folders should be the music files, pictures and the database files. Depending on the different versions of iTunes and iPhoto, you should be able to open these apps whilst holding OPTION and then select the iTunes library and iPhoto library respectively. :)

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