My ex-wife managed to get on to my Mac (OS X 10.9.4) and change my password for log on. Luckily, I am still able to access my Mac as she didn't set it to screen lock. What do I need to do in order to get back to my old password so that I can set a new one. Can I simply restore from my Time Machine to get it back to my old password? Or do I need more advanced help?

  • no duplicate... just trying to figure out if i can reset using my time machine. Will time machine take it back to the password I was using? I last backed up four days ago and it was just changed tonight.
    – James
    Sep 7, 2014 at 6:39
  • Recovering from TimeMachine may be an option, but the answer linked to by @njboot above offers a much easier way to solve your problem.
    – nohillside
    Sep 7, 2014 at 6:56

1 Answer 1


Resetting User Account Password (10.7 +)

  1. Boot into your Recovery Partition holding down Command + R at the startup chime
  2. Select "Terminal" from your "Utilities" Menu Bar
  3. Type the following command in: resetpassword
  4. From the window that appears, select your boot volume and the appropriate user account
  5. Type in the new password and confirm the new password
  6. Click "Save", close this pane and quit Utilities
  7. Select boot volume again when presented with "Choose Startup Disk" and reboot your machine
  • will this delete anything currently on my mac? or do i need to do a time machine boot up?
    – James
    Sep 7, 2014 at 6:42
  • This won't delete anything on your current Mac. It will just reset the password. Time Machine isn't necessary.
    – njboot
    Sep 7, 2014 at 6:45
  • so shut down the computer... hold down command + R at the startup chime and follow the rest of your steps? What is the boot volume? There's only one account on there which was mine.
    – James
    Sep 7, 2014 at 6:48
  • @James Yes. Print out instructions if necessary. Here's one that includes pictures. It's quite simple. Boot volume is your main volume. IE, "Macintosh HD" by default.
    – njboot
    Sep 7, 2014 at 6:52
  • awesome!!! I will try it out now! Thanks for the assist! You're a lifesaver!
    – James
    Sep 7, 2014 at 6:57

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