When I start up my MacBookPro/osx/snow leopard , I get this error with yahoo messenger..

What is this keychain thing? Is this some Mac thing?

Any links to explain this concept and how to resolve it?


  • Can you clarify what is the error message, and what triggers it? A screenshot would be helpful. Is Yahoo Messenger a program that you have set to launch when you start up your computer? – Daniel Oct 9 '11 at 4:55
  • Have you looked at macosx.com/forums/mac-os-x-system-mac-software/… – xyz Nov 27 '11 at 17:04

Keychain is where Mac OS X saves stored passwords and other secure information. Without more information, I cannot debug your problem further, but it sounds as if Yahoo! Messenger expects to find a saved password for your account with them in your keychain, and is not finding it. The program Keychain Access, found in /Applications/Utilities, can help you view (and edit) keychain entries.

  • 3
    and once you have "Keychain Access" open, click "Keychain Access" in your menu bar at the top and select "Keychain First Aid". Run the repair and then run verify. – Brad Parks Jun 6 '12 at 21:11
  • @BradParks Make this an answer so I can up vote it. ;) – Stunner Sep 1 '14 at 6:32
  • 1
    Thanks @BradParks. Note to future readers, Brad's answer has been added below. – WEFX Nov 26 '14 at 17:48

To fix this:

  • Run Keychain Access (found in /Applications/Utilities)
  • click "Keychain Access" in the menu bar at the top and select "Keychain First Aid".
  • Run the repair and then run verify.

That should fix it!

  • 3
    I'm not seeing any such menu item in El Capitan. – David Moles Oct 3 '16 at 16:37
  • Hmmm... It appears that Apple removed this feature in El Capitan on... So I'll leave this here for users of older Mac OS versions. Note sure, but maybe this will help solve the problem in a slightly different way – Brad Parks Oct 3 '16 at 16:47

Here's a trick I tried with my MacBook Pro that seems to work:

  1. Turn on hidden files in Finder. Macworld has a good tutorial, just look for "view hidden files on mac." If you already have it turned on, skip to step 2.

  2. Open Keychain Access. You'll likely see a keychain called "login" that's in BOLD and had a blank square for an icon, probably corrupted.

  3. Click "File" >> "Add Keychain..."

  4. Use the following file path to choose an archived keychain: Macintosh HD (or whatever the name for your HD is) >> Users >> Admin (will have house icon next to it) >> Library >> Keychains >> login.keychain-randomcharacters.db <-- this file will look like your average temp file. Here's what my file path looked like: My file path Use the List View and sort by "Date Modified" to find an archived keychain from just before the problem appeared. I found one from the day before the crash.

  5. Click on the file, add it to the keychain. Close every program properly, Reboot the computer through the OS; don't hardboot if you can avoid it.

  6. If everything checks out, delete the old "login" keychain that's blank/weird. You're good to go. Hope it helps!

For the record, here's the specs I was working with My mac specs


I just had the same issue in the brand new Mac I got today.

To solve it we just opened the Keychain Access tool and deleted the login keychain (it did not had an icon, signal for something strange happening).

Then I rebooted the Mac and... voilà, rebooting solved it! Upon reboot it recreated a new working one.

I suppose the first one had been created by some corporate setup tool as root and my user, despite being an admin, could not access / write to it.

  • Same issue for me - login keychain was corrupted after a reboot. After rebooting a few times and deleting the login keychain via Keychain Access - macOS eventually recreated the keychain - sadly all the certs and secrets were reset. – SliverNinja - MSFT Apr 11 at 16:11

Just had this this morning. "login" showed as "locked" in Keychain Access and cannot be unlocked, lots of messages from various apps. iCloud strangely had Keychain de-activated on my Mac even though it was activated before.

I read about Safe Mode boot as a potential solution and tried but that did not help in my case.

I copied the Keychain Folder in Library to have a backup, I checked on my iPhone which had all the PWs.

So I reset the Keychain on my Mac, turned off Keychain sync on the iPhone as well (Mac was already off) and then turned it back on the iPhone again first and then on the Mac (asks for authorization from the phone), that synced the Keychain back to my Mac (there was an Apple article about syncing which contained that advice, i.e. turn the device with the PWs back on first).


I had this problem today on macOS Sierra. After experimenting, it looks like somehow my login keychain had been locked. I fixed it by selecting the Keys entry under category in the left hand pane. I was prompted for my password to unlock the login keychain. I then had to reboot.

The symptom I saw was that the login keychain had a locked icon beside it rather than an unlocked one. I suspect you can simply unlock the keychain.

  • Dave’s suggestion worked for me. I confirmed that all my keychains were still in existent, evident after opening Keychain Access. Somehow it must have became locked because once unlocked one of them (I didn’t pay attention to which one; might have been either the login or System.), and also relaunched the browsers—Chrome particularly—the messages no longer came up. Chrome 12.0; Safari 68.0.3440.106; MacOS 10.13.6 – Jay Kvam Sep 14 '18 at 0:59

In my case, I had created a temporary keychain marked as default, after which other Apps started complaining with error "Cannot be found to store.."

Resolved by: Keychain Access > on the left side Keychains panel > right click "login" > Make as default.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .