With a fresh install of MySQL v5 I cannot log in as root user. Since its a fresh install, there should be no password in existence for root. I try with mysql -u root so I can then assign a password for security, then hit enter. My bash profile is already set up correctly.

Stuff I've done to try to fix it:

I've tried both of the ways they suggest for Unix (by nixing the .pid file and starting up my skipping grant tables.

I've tried this:

mysqld_safe --user=mysql --skip-grant-tables &

Then Execute these statements.
mysql -u root mysql
mysql> UPDATE user SET Password = PASSWORD('your_new_password') where USER = 'root';

Everytime I get permissions denied for any files in my 'data' directory. The data folder is owned by 'mysql' user with a group of 'wheel'. That is the default privileges on install.

While futzing around before I managed to execute the above suggestions by changing the owner to my User name, and the group to mysql. However, even with the UPDATE script setting a new password, I couldn't get in with the one I set.

I know its confusing, but if this looks familiar to anyone, please please help me. A friend of mine mentioned having the same problem and she just gave up, but I'm determined to get this to work.

And I have tried uninstalling with the sudo rm commands and reinstalling several times with the exact same results.

bound and determined