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  1. #1


    Member Since
    Sep 15, 2009
    Posts
    6
    Formatting an Imac when accounts are PW protected
    Hi all,

    Well, like a baby in a basket on my doorstep I, a PC user, have found myself in possession of an Imac (err, i think that's what it's called - it has the handle thingy and i can see it's innards). It was left, cold and unloved, by its previous owner and I was told I could keep it as he moved out of his apartment.

    So, after eying it warily for a few days whilst taking an overtly circular path around it, I decided to approach it cautiously. After considerable attempts at communication, and the the requisite stick-poking to make sure it wasn't alive / a trojan horse / an alien thingy here to harm my large slobbering oaf of a PC... I plugged it in and booted 'er up.

    and there I saw them - three user accounts with password protection.

    So here be my question: How do i format the thing and reinstall the OS so to actually be able to use it? or is there another way. The guy is long gone and I don't have his contact info...

    Any thoughts would be welcomed.

    Thanks,


    Jay

  2. #2

    Mac SK's Avatar
    Member Since
    Oct 20, 2006
    Posts
    1,513
    You need to tell us more about it. I take it ...its a picture tube Imac in some color ...Green ,blue,red white. Dose it have a slot where the cd goes. The only way in to the OS is to have the system install disc that came with the machine. Then you can boot with it and change the password. With out it the bad news is the hard drive can be removed and reformated in an other Mac then put back. It cleans the hard drive and gets rid of the password but you need OS install discs to reinstall the system. Then theres the issue of firmware updates etc cause you have a clean drive. Find this guy who gave you the machine and ask for the passwords or the system disc.

    On the password page is there a place for a guest to sign in? Then sometimes you can get into the preferences and remove the passwords. Also type the wrong password several times over and over the machine will give a clue to what it really is.

  3. #3


    Member Since
    Sep 15, 2009
    Posts
    6
    I'm so sorry for the delay - i thought that I had subscribed to the thread and as such assumed that I was unloved by all mac users, everywhere (... i mean.. you guys have like, a shared consciousness right?!)

    hehehe.

    okay, so my options are pull the drive and format it on another mac or to try and guess the password? I can't get the original boot CD... but in Windows I can use any old boot CD to get into that option panel to reformat / install... is it different in MAC?

    I'll respond right away this time, i promise

    (p.s: color = light blue and yes there's a CD slot)

  4. #4

    pigoo3's Avatar
    Member Since
    May 20, 2008
    Location
    U.S.
    Posts
    34,547
    Specs:
    2011 13" MBP 2.3ghz, 8gig ram, OS 10.8.5
    Quote Originally Posted by canadianjameson View Post
    I can't get the original boot CD... but in Windows I can use any old boot CD to get into that option panel to reformat / install... is it different in MAC?
    It depends...many Macs ship with a set of grey/silver disks that are model specific. So if you purchase a set of these they most likely won't work unless they were meant for a G3 iMac.

    If you purchase a retail version of anMac OS install CD/DVD...then it should install trouble free.

    BTW...You didn't mention what OS version you were interested in installing.

    HTH,

    - Nick
    - Too many "beachballs", read this: Beachballs
    - Computer seems slower than it used to? Read this for some slow computer tips: Speedup
    - Almost full hard drive? Some solutions. Out of Space
    - Apple Battery Info. Battery

  5. #5


    Member Since
    Sep 15, 2009
    Posts
    6
    Hey,

    I actually have no idea a) what is currently installed (how do i see?) or b) what would be a good OS to pop in given the specs that I don't know

    Any ideas?

    Thanks again guys

  6. #6


    Member Since
    Mar 30, 2004
    Location
    USA
    Posts
    4,744
    Specs:
    12" Apple PowerBook G4 (1.5GHz)
    Like almost any other electrical product, the iMac will have a model number on a sticker on its backside. Either Google the model number, or post it here and someone'll look it up for you. This will give you the (original) specs of the computer, less any upgrades.

    If the sticker is damaged or illegible, there is a guide here that will help you to narrow it down.

  7. #7


    Member Since
    Sep 15, 2009
    Posts
    6
    Hi,
    Thanks, I found it!

    Imac / 600 / GR / 256 / 40 / CDRW / ultra / 56k / FW / VGA

    I found this thread which suggests running 'tiger' OSX: which osx do you reccomend for this [Archive] - Mac Forums

    What are your thoughts? Where can I get it / will whatever copy i get work for this machine?

  8. #8

    harryb2448's Avatar
    Member Since
    Nov 28, 2007
    Location
    Nambucca Heads Australia
    Posts
    21,872
    Specs:
    Imac 27" Retina 3.3GHz, 512GB Flash, 16GB memory, OS X.11.4.
    No. Must be what is known as the full retail install DVD which are black. Silver grey discs such as repeatedly sold on eBay are model specific exclusively.

    And should it be firmware password protected you will not get in without a password.

  9. #9


    Member Since
    Sep 15, 2009
    Posts
    6
    Hey,

    Thanks for all of your help.

    Two questions remain: I was able to borrow a copy of OS9 (white CD) - given the specs listed above, is it a good idea to install this version or is it too much for this machine>?

    Second, because this CD is white and not black, will it work? (this refers to the last post). I guess my question is, can i screw anything up by trying or will it simply tell me that it won't work?

    Thanks,


    Jay

  10. #10


    Member Since
    Sep 15, 2009
    Posts
    6
    bump - anyone?

    I don't want to screw up the computer by installing an OS that is too resource heavy for the machine.

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