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Saturday, December 6, 2008

Mac OS X Boot Commands

I recently had to work on a Mac OS X that did not want to boot off of the CD ROM drive, I was able to conduct a work around. The following commands are helpful for you Mac OS X techs, Computer Forensics Examiners and Mac users. Enjoy...

****** Mac OS X Boot Commands *******

Command-S Boot into Single User Mode
Command-V Boot using "Verbose" mode (shows all kernel and startup console messages)
X Reset startup disk selection and boot into Mac OS X Server
Shift Boot into "Safe Boot" mode, which runs Disk First Aid. A reboot will be required afterward.
Option Boot into Open Firmware to select a boot device
Command-Option-Shift-Delete Bypass internal harddrive on boot
T Boot into Firewire target disk mode
C Boot from the internal optical drive
N Start from the Network (NetBoot)
Command-Option-P-R Reset Parameter RAM (PRAM) and non-volatile RAM (NVRAM)
(mouse button) Eject (internal) removable media

ALSO: if you use open firmware password... you'll need this:
Startup Manager -accessed by pressing the Option key during startup
Enter commands after starting up in Open Firmware -press Command-Option-O-F key combination during startup.

How to troubleshoot a computer with Open Firmware Password enabled
If you cannot access the Open Firmware Password application and need to troubleshoot your computer by:

Resetting the PRAM
Starting up in Single-user mode
Starting up in Verbose mode
Starting from CD-ROM

Then follow these steps:

Start up into Open Firmware by pressing and holding the Command-Option-O-F key combination during startup.
At the Open Firmware prompt, type: reset-nvram
Press Return.
When prompted for your password, enter it and press the Return key. It responds OK.
At the Open Firmware prompt, type: reset-all
Press Return.

The computer restarts and you are now be able to reset the PRAM and startup in Single-user mode, Verbose mode, or from CD-ROM.


Ryan said...

You can find more tips about working on the Macintosh at my website, It is a site dedicated to Macintosh Forensics.

Ryan R. Kubasiak
Apple Certified Desktop Specialist
Certified Computer Examiner
Encase Certified Examiner

Kellep A. Charles, CISA, CISSP, NSA-IAM said...

Hello Ryan, thank you for the submission on Mac OS tips at your website. I feel you are helping a direct and growing group of people in the Mac OS X forensic community. Nice going.