I just opened a new Macbook Pro out of the box and, after going through the initial setup (language, timezone, name, etc.), I see the login screen without my username. I tried typing in my username (manually) and password but nothing happens. The only option is to click the back button which then shows a blank alias picture with the word Other underneath it

If I reboot the computer pressing Sand then do ls /Users to see the users on the system it only has .localized and Shared directories, which indicates to me that the user was not created properly.

How do I correct this so I can have an initial user account?

  • 1
    I'd be concerned about this; if there's no user account, what else could have been changed (you simply can't know)? Were all the seals in place when you received the box? My guess would be it's ex-demo and someone removed the user account; it could be a manufacturing glitch, but I doubt it. I'd return to Apple, or if that's not feasible, do a full re-install of OS X including formatting the internal storage (hard disk/SSD).
    – Calrion
    Jun 5, 2014 at 21:10
  • @Calrion I was about to post that as an answer, you should probably do that. :)
    – user56648
    Jun 5, 2014 at 22:08
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    It was probably just a one-off thing. When I typed my full name it didn't give me a username (like it usually does - "Joe Doe" as a name will generate "joedoe" as a username) but I just clicked forward anyways. Probably just some weird bug? Everything was sealed and flawless so I doubt that it was tampered with.
    – s g
    Jun 5, 2014 at 22:44
  • Just to add, in my experience (ex-Genius and several years as a repair technician for AASP) I've heard about this happening a handful of times. So it's not unheard of but it's definitely not common. You might consider verifying the disk and repairing disk permissions using Disk Utility but beyond that I personally wouldn't worry.
    – Mr Rabbit
    Jun 6, 2014 at 12:52
  • Good call - some things did differ.. Library/Java, System/Library/Frameworks/Ruby..., and Applications/.DS_Store all had some (users/groups/permissions) issues. Is this cause for concern?
    – s g
    Jun 6, 2014 at 17:42

3 Answers 3


Definitely a strange situation, however there's a relatively easy solution.

Boot to single user mode as you did before by holding S while power it on.

Once you reach the command prompt you can enter the following commands, pressing return after each one:

/sbin/fsck -fy
/sbin/mount -uw /
rm /var/db/.AppleSetupDone

This will remove the file that OS X checks for when booting to determine if the Mac has already been setup. When it fails to detect the file it will start the setup assistant, which includes the step that allows you to create your user account.


I would hold alt during startup and fire up the recovery, reparing or reinstalling the OS.

You could also try to create a user via the safe-start, using the root account, but that might be too complicated. Just try the recovery.


I tend to agree with YoshiBotX. Something must have gone wrong during setup. And as you don't have anything installed or invested I would just do a re-install.

To answer your questions. There are several ways to create an account from the situation you are in.

One would be to create an account from the command line. You can find instructions at MacLife.

An other approach would be to run the setup again. You can find instructions to do that at Cnet.

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