How to Set the Firmware Password in Mac OS X

Before We Get Started

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Improving your computer’s security is always a good idea, and Apple gives you several options of doing so. The one we will discuss today is how to set your Firmware password. Setting a Firmware password will prevent your computer from being booted to different volumes without requiring this password.

Setting a Firmware Password has become extremely easy with Mac OS X Lion. This simple tutorial will walk you through the process of setting your firmware password.

There are really only a couple steps you need to take to set the firmware password.

1)   The first thing we’ll want to do is boot to the Recovery Partition. In case you’ve never done it, we’ll need to restart the computer by holding the Command key and the letter R on the keyboard (⌘R).

2)   This will take you to the Recovery menu. You’ll want to access Utilities from the top menu bar and click “Firmware Password Utility” (it will be the top option).

3)   After selecting Firmware Password Utility, you’ll come to a prompt screen saying that your Password is currently off. It will ask you to “Turn On Firmware Password…”

4)   You’ll be prompted to enter, and then verify your password. This will be followed by a confirmation.  Once you agree, the Firmware password has been set!

Now, if you happened to upgrade from Snow Leopard, and you had a Firmware password set, that password will no longer be valid. You will need to set a new one using the steps above.

And that’s really all there is to it!

For further security measures, you may wish to look at encrypting your drive with FileVault. However, this level of security is more than enough for the average Mac user.

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