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Everything About Single User Mode in Mac OS X.


“Single User” is a boot mode, you actually tells the unix shell that the OS should load only prompt (no GUI), and the local console login is the only login available (can’t be logged on from the network). Now the question is why we need to boot in Single User mode and the answer is, sometimes the system requires an administrative actions by the administrator, such as disk checkup, partition altering, drivers uninstalling, backups, etc.at this delicate tasks you don’t want other users to touch/create/remove/use files, hardware, CPU, and use resources. this is why you enter into single user mode.

What can you do in “Single User” Mode?

since single user mode is for administrator and no GUI is available then every task you can do from terminal (command line) as root user you can do here, which is practically everything (on the current system) it wasn’t meant to be used for regular work such as surfing the web (there is no network) or reading files etc. you can use all the unix commands available for OS X and all the command line utilities and applications available on that machine.

How to enter Single User Mode :

  1. Restart your Mac or Hackintosh.
  2. Continuously press F8 until you see the Darwin boot prompt
  3. Type “-s” without the quotation marks and press enter.
  4. You will soon reach a command prompt
  5. Note the lines written to the console about fsck and mount
  6. Type : /sbin/fsck -fy
  7. Type : /sbin/mount – uw / this will mount your file system
  8. thats it now you are in “Single User Mode”

In single-user mode, not all functions of Mac OS X are available. To use the Mac OS X interface or other high-level aspects of Mac OS X, you need to start up in the standard mode.To switch back to the Mac OS X interface, type reboot and press the Return key. The computer restarts and you see the login dialog or the Mac desktop, depending on your login preferences.



Comments ( 5 )

Have Something To Say ?

  1. graph.geoff February 5, 2011 Reply

    i was wundering, why can’t i write anything in the black screen, in single user mode?
    these the black screen with all the texte…. and where i’m supose to write /sbin/fsck -fy or any athor command?
    can you help me please !?!?!

  2. Daniel January 29, 2011 Reply

    Pedro, does this reset the admin password, make a new one
    or make a temporary password?

  3. Pedro February 28, 2010 Reply

    anonymous, i dont think there is any way to browse the web. sorry!

    mike, if you want an admin password:

    open the computer in single user mode

    put in /sbin/fsck -fy
    then press enter

    then put in /sbin/mount -uw /
    press enter

    then put in sh /etc/rc
    then press enter

    THEN put in passwd root
    press enter

    now the computer will prompt you, twice, for a password. type in the new password. dont worry about it not showing you what you type, its supposed to do that. after you put it in press enter, then put it in the second time. after that press enter

    then put in reboot
    press enter

    the computer will reboot and bring you to a login screen. press the account ‘other’.
    username: root
    password: whatever you said the password was in single user mode.

    hope this helped!

  4. anonymous February 24, 2010 Reply

    I have been struggling with this for a while, before you said that it’s not meant for browsing the web, but is there any way to browse the web in this mode? I’ve tried loading lynx, links, and elinks but to no avail. I don’t necessarily to run it in single user mode, i just want to browse the web in a fully cli environment (no gui in the background). all help is greatly appreciated!

  5. mike January 19, 2010 Reply

    how can i remove the administrator password or any user password if i forget it using mac book

    thanks alot

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