View Full Version : Authentication problems!

25th May 2010, 05:26 PM
When I first got my Mac, I entered my full name as my short name, so I copied all my stuff to a new account using the root login.
Now everytime I get asked to authenticate something it comes up with my user name as "Benj Anthonisz" not "Ben Anthonisz"
The link below is a screen shot of it.
Please answer! It's my first Mac and I don't want to have messed with it on the third day of having it!

It should say "Ben Anthonisz" rather than "Benj".

25th May 2010, 06:02 PM
Go into System Prefs -> Accounts.
Find your account and from memory you can easily change the long name of the account?
If not then it might be a hidden right-click option.

25th May 2010, 11:03 PM
I figured it out.
When I went onto root I deleted my original account and made one called 'Benj", after moving the files across.
I needed to reset my MacBook to allow it to change to Ben again.
Thanks for the reply anywho!

25th May 2010, 11:05 PM
Ben, seeing this is day three of Mac-dom for you, it would be best if you started over, because it sounds like you've made a right bollocks of the default install and both (yes both) of your user accounts.

Your first mistake was, obviously, getting your shortname wrong during original setup. Your second and more drastic mistake was enabling the System Administrator (root) account and using it to move user-owned files without following Apple's detailed how-to (http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1428) in an attempt to change your shortname and all associated account information.

You may have some luck by following Apple's instructions (http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1428) to make yet another new account, then delete both bad accounts, then using the instructions yet again to recreate a new account with the correct name.

However, considering how new your setup is, and the fact that Apple still cannot seem to get their head wrapped around permissions, you would be best off copying everything you want to keep onto an HFS-formatted external drive, reformatting the internal, and setting things up properly. Before you copy things back off the external to the internal, do a 'Get Info' on the external drive and make sure 'Ignore ownership on this volume' is ticked.

Tip: If you are coming from a linux background, do not fall into the trap of thinking that because OSX is "Unix certified" that you can treat it like any other linux or unix-alike -- it is its own beastie, full of quirks and peculiarities. One of the 'golden rules' for OSX is this: Never ever move, delete, upgrade, downgrade, edit or otherwise change any file installed by Apple as part of the OS unless 1) you have a full backup, and 2) are aware of the ramifications. Go join OSX Hints (http://www.macosxhints.com) and read copiously to learn the subtle and not so subtle differences. Apple have a bad habit of hard-coding to their own code base, so it pays to learn what you can and cannot do.

On a related note, another trap for the unwary geek is to assume Apple's hardware is fully 'generic' compliant in that you can run whatever OS you please -- this is not the case. Apple have thirty years of changing architectures to suit their OS, and modern Macs are no different; an Intel processor does not a standard computer make. The only supported OSes for Apple hardware is OSX, and Windows with Boot Camp; if you try to run, say, Ubuntu, directly on the hardware, you run a high risk of killing your machine's CPU. If you want to run an unsupported OS, keep it inside a virtual machine at all times.

26th May 2010, 06:46 PM
That was the thing!
I did follow the guide given by Apple on the site.
Mac OS X: How to change user short name or home directory name (http://support.apple.com/kb/ht1428)
It worked, just the log in thing didn't.
It just needed a good reset to fix itself.
Now it run's like nothing ever happened.
Thank you so much for your detailed response though! Hopefully it will help other Mac newbies like me in the future.

26th May 2010, 07:34 PM
Ahh, brilliant - yes, I forgot to add that after doing the account-transfer shenannigans, a full restart and popping the drive into Disk Utility for a quick 'repair permissions' rinse-and-dry is always a good thing.