Posted by: macoy | May 1, 2008

Tech Tip: Enabling Root Password in Mac OS X

Happened to pass by Shi’ne’s blog, and found this entry: How To Enable Root Password in Leopard. I honestly didn’t before that there’s a GUI utility for enabling root password in Mac OS X, and it’s in the form of the Directory Utility.app. That’s one useful tip I’ve learned today. 🙂

I guess Apple does not enable root password by default as a security precaution (for the sake of ordinary users). Can’t really remember what I usually do after a new Mac OS X install, but here’s how I change the root password via the command-line, without necessarily “enabling root password” explicitly (and it’s applicable even in pre-Leopard versions):

1. launch terminal.app (be sure you’re logged in as an admin user)
2. $ sudo su
(imho, admin users are automatically added to the sudoers group by default)
3. # passwd
(from the su environment you can then change the root password)

Being the traditional sysad that I am, I still want to execute some admin stuff via the command-line even if there are already built-in Mac utilities with the kewl interfaces. In my opinion, it’s just much faster doing stuff in the terminal.app. with less mouse use, and your fingers just stay in the keyboard at all times, ready for action so to speak. 🙂

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