Question about Apple Power Mac G5 Desktop

2 Answers

I Cannot Reset a New Password

Someone has broken into my G5 and now my system has stopped responding to my original password.

I have tried the gray disk 1 and the reset feature, but that did not work. I got a message that stated that the, SYSTEM ADMINISTRATOR (ROOT) did not save the new password.

Please let me know how I can correct this.

Thank you.

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  • EVERETTE NICOLLS Nov 19, 2008


    I followed your instructions and here is what happened.

    I am using the G5 with Leopard.

    After booting from the disk, I went to Utilities and Reset password.
    The Reset Password box came up with the image of a dvd disk: Mac OSX. . . 1 Disc 1.
    Everything else in the box was in light gray. I clicked on the disk and up popped:
    System Administrator (root). I clicked on the up and the down arrow but I did not
    get another feature. Thus, I could not reset my password as instructed by you.

    This Mac is OSX 10.5.5 and the start up disk is 10.4.

    After using the Reset password feature, I also looked at the Start up Disk feature.
    There I was given the choice of using my install disc, the Mac HD 10.5.5 or the
    network startup. Neither of those worked.

    Only System Administrator (root) pops up when I used the reset password feature.

    Are there any other solutions, please?

    I appreciate you assistance.



  • EVERETTE NICOLLS Nov 19, 2008

    Sorry, I forgot to add that I do not know how to get to FIRMWARE. My Desk Top is not coming up when I turn on my computer. The only window that opens is the password window. I suspect that I might be having problems with the FIRMWARE.

    How do I get to that and disable it?

    Thank you for your help.



  • EVERETTE NICOLLS Nov 19, 2008


    Thank you for your patients with me. It is just that nothing is working here. I follow the procedures and I
    continue to receive the same results. I think that I must have a way to enter FIRMWARE.

    The only feature on my Desk top that is coming up besides the password log in box is the purple Leopard screen. So, I cannot enter my system preferences. How do I get to FIRMWARE?

    Do you think some kind of Spyware was placed on my computer? My girl friend broke into it
    to read my e-mails and it has not worked since.

    I have been to the Apple site to read up on FIRMWARE but it does not give instructions on how to enter that feature if the problem is as mine happens to be.

    Please get back to me.

    Thank you.



  • EVERETTE NICOLLS Nov 19, 2008


    Something is wrong here. The image you sent of the Reset Password box with the two hard drives inset
    that does not occur on mine. When that box comes up, only the install disk is shown. When I click on that as I said, I get the SYSTEM ADMINISTRATION (root).

    The only time that I see both drives is if I go to the first feature under Utlilities: STARTUP DISK.

    I guess that I have come to the end of the road.

    Well, thank you for your time and assistance.

    Warm regards,




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No one seems to understand the problem. How do you disable or reset the firmware password? All the basic keystrokes are disabled with firmware password protection enabled. They say the only workaround is something physical, but what is it? Removing the battery and ram does not help.

Any real ideas?

Posted on Oct 24, 2009

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Hi there
You'll need your install disk.

  1. Start up from a Mac OS X Install CD (one whose version is closest the the version of Mac OS X installed). You should first disable Open Firmware password protection, if it is enabled. Hold the C key as the computer starts.
  2. Choose Reset Password from the Installer menu (or Utilities menu in Mac OS X 10.4 Tiger). Tip: If you don't see this menu or menu choice, you're probably not started from the CD yet.
  3. Select your Mac OS X hard disk volume.
  4. Set the user name of your original administrator account.

    Important:Do not select "System Administrator (root)". This is actually areference to the root user. Do not confuse it with a normaladministrator account.
  5. Enter a new password.
  6. Click Save.

Posted on Nov 19, 2008

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  • Paul Burrows
    Paul Burrows Nov 19, 2008

    Hi Everette
    Yep it is a bit of a pain to do but does work. I've done it on a few machines. You cannot go in as "system admin'

    Rather than me trying to explain it all to you apple have a really good support section. Just click on the link below. If you still have a problem come back to me.

    Good luck


  • Paul Burrows
    Paul Burrows Nov 19, 2008

    Hi Everette
    You should not have a problem with the 10.4 disk.
    You just need to go through the firmware bit of the site.

    Looks a bit complicated hopefully you'll get through it OK.


    Firmware bit.

  • Paul Burrows
    Paul Burrows Nov 19, 2008

    OK Everette
    The machine must be switched off when you put the install disk in. start the mac up holding down the 'c' key. The window you should then get is the language selection to install. Click next.

    Now stop there. From the top of the screen you should see the menu for the install DVD. Click on utitlities. It will drop down to give you a selection.

    Your first try should be reset password (second down) this will open up another window that shows you the drives. One will be the DVD the other your hard drive. click on your hard drive icon.

    Click on the 'select user to change system admin (root) the password boxes should be available to you. Put the new password you set in the hint box (for now). And you should be away.

    Unless you original set a firmware password. It is blank by default. Your problem is not a firmware issue.

    I'm afraid the last resort is to re-install your system. Archive the old one and then you can get all your private stuff off out of the archived users.

    I dout very much that spyware or such is causing any problems.





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