When I open my keychain access, it is empty. I can't see anything in it. However, I know that all of my stuff is still working (websites don't prompt me to log in, I join wifi networks, Xcode still see my developer certs), etc.

I suspect that this happened when I changed my account password. As I understand it, if I change the password in the Accounts pref pane, my keychain passwords should update automatically.

So I suspected that maybe if I locked my keychain items in Keychain access, and then unlocked them, that 1. I would be prompted for my password, and 2. I might be able to see my stuff again. Neither one happened.

Any thoughts on what I might do to rectify this? I have backups of all of the important stuff (secrets, etc), but I'd really like to try fixing it if I can.

Update 8/21/2013

I tried restoring from a TimeMachine backup, and I'm seeing the same thing. Here is a screen shot:

enter image description here

I know that it looks like a virgin Keychain, but as I indicated earlier, everything is still working. All my certs are still in Xcode Organzier, I am periodically prompted to unlock the login keychain, especially after a reboot.

This is very strange indeed.

  • Do you have a viable Time Machine backup? If so, extract it from there, and open it with the Keychain app to restore it.
    – Dave
    Aug 20, 2013 at 22:07
  • I do have it in Time Machine, but I'm not convinced it is going to work. I haven't lost anything other than visiblity.
    – Kirk
    Aug 20, 2013 at 23:32
  • On the left side, do you have the "login" keychain, and "All items" selected in the Category?
    – Kent
    Aug 20, 2013 at 23:36
  • Yep. I've updated my original question.
    – Kirk
    Aug 21, 2013 at 14:23
  • Have you used Keychain First Aid (under the Keychain menubar menu) to verify/repair your login keychain?
    – Mr Rabbit
    Aug 21, 2013 at 15:22

1 Answer 1


I was also running into the same issue for a very long time and stumbled upon this post which explains the same problem. At last, I got it working today.

Here's how I got it to work:

  • Open "Keychain Access" application
  • Everything will be empty
  • Go to View -> Sort By -> Keychain (By default, it will be sorted by Name)

After you do this first sort, every entry in the keychain will start showing up magically. You can later change the sort order to anything.

I got the clue from Console logs:

4/22/14 11:36:19.792 PM Keychain Access[1575]: * -[KeychainStore _keyKeychainItemsByKeyOrItemClass:itemClass:attributes:]: Ignoring exception * -[NSMutableArray sortUsingFunction:context:]: function pointer cannot be NULL

Try it!

  • Thanks for this. I finally gave up, and just trashed my keychain and started from scratch. If it ever happens again I will definitely try this. If anyone can confirm that this works, then I will be happy to accept this answer.
    – Kirk
    Apr 24, 2014 at 20:21

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