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OS X - Operating System General OS operation information and support

OS 10.4 - Single-using mode: booting in root without password?

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When you boot in the single-user mode (by holding command-S when booting), you will boot in root user. But why isn't there any promt asking for password?

And I thought MacOS X was superior in security...

Anyone want to comment on that?
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If you need that security there is an Open Firmware security patch that requires a password on single user mode and also prohibits using the t and c at boot time as well.
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Originally Posted by AlexN
And I thought MacOS X was superior in security...
When you have physical access to a computer, no matter which OS it is running, it is vulnerable.
Even on Linux you can acces the data on a computer by simply booting from a live CD.
Which you can't on a Mac with an Open Firmware password set though...this security is Mac-specific, not OS related.
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As is said above this is not that unusual for an OS. Boot CDs can get you into most systems, and Single user mode is available on multiple (most?) *nix Operating Systems.

Rule # 213: If a hacker has physical access to the machine and can set boot type the machine is effectively compromised. Windows, Linux, BSD, Mac, AIX.... It does not matter what OS it is.

Open firmware is your best bet, but even then it could be compromised with a little more effort I bet. (A disk swap to an otherwise identical machine or into a external drive casing comes to mind.)

You can always use crypto disk images for sensitive data. Then even w/ root access you won't get into those areas without a password. Just be sure to not lose the password. Having to brute force crack a password is no fun when it is properly complex.
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