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How Do You Put a Password on a Mac?

Hi,

I have a Mac Mini that's a couple of years old, without and Intel processor. How do I put a password on it so no one can get in?

Thanks.
Kara
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kara334
Asked:
kara334
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1 Solution
 
pheidiusCommented:
In some respects you can't. Almost every form of security can be bypassed if an unauthorized agent has unrestricted physical access to any machine. That being said, the deepest password protection lies in your PPC based Mac's open firmware. A password set here is designed to restrict your hard drives capacity for being booted from a system disk, netboot, or firewire target mode(and others). http://docs.info.apple.com/article.html?artnum=106482 In other words, in any other way than through the front door login. This can be circumvented, however, by the memory amount being changed during the boot process. The next level of security would be to use Tiger's capacity to use File Vault to encrypt your whole home folder. images.apple.com/server/pdfs/Tiger_Security_Config.pdf  This has it its share of problems though. Becaause it encrypts your entire home folder if it goes south, you lose everything. I lost a home folder once in Panther but it was improved in Tiger. It still, however, is starting a fair share of freak out threads. Naturally, picking a good relatively unguessable normal login password is good practice. Pick  one with with characters other than just letters. Perhaps the best way to keep security is to realize that anyone with the proper knowledge can break into almost any protection scheme. Perhaps making encrypted volumes to store your tax, identity, trade secrets etc. is the way to go. Back these up, though, as they too can encounter problems. I lost an entire volume once when a Speeze firewire drive's chipset corrupted the directory of the hard drive the volume was on.  Your Mac mini does not have any TPM chip on it as do some laptops. So there is no hardware protection built-in. Even such chips, however, can be circumvented if someone is willing and able to replace the chip itself. Here is a good overview of good security precautions. http://www.itsecurity.com/features/top-12-os-x-tiger-security-issues-032007/
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pheidiusCommented:
Whoops, looks like one of my links did not take. Just type in Tiger Security Configuration into your browser and it will take you to an Apple PDF download of Tiger security issues.
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gbougiakasCommented:
You just go to your System Preferences -> Users and you set a password for your user account. If there are no more users none can log in except yourself.

You could also check Security under System Preferences to create a File Vault that will lock and encrypt whichever files you need concealed.
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kara334Author Commented:
Hi,
I apologize for not getting back to you guy sooner, but I have been very ill. I was almost hospitalized. No worries, though. I am getting well, and will get to this question soon. Thank you for understanding.

Kara
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kara334Author Commented:
Hi All,

Still sick - flat on my back and on crutches with pinkeye. Have my PC laptop on my stomach and can't get to the Mac Mini right now. I'll let you know what happens after my back heals, and I can sit up. Thanks again for your patience.

Kara
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kara334Author Commented:
Thank you all for waiting. I am starting to recover, and successfully put a password on my Mac.

Kara
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