How to Enable the Root user on Mac OS X 10.12 Sierra and earlier

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How to Enable the Root User or “SuperUser” on Mac OS X. This demo is done in Mac OS X 10.12 Sierra, but it also works on previous versions of the OS.
Enabling the root user is important and useful for maintenance and troubleshooting tasks both in the GUI and in the Command Line on the Mac. Take control by enabling it and becoming familiar with command line access!

If you want to see other tips, tricks or guides, just let us know in the comments below!

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  1. Hey nice vid man… maybe ur the guy to help me out. Been having the same problem with a macbook pro 2011 for about a year now. I hear its a kernal task issue but ill give u the run down… the hard drive's working overtime, the fan aswell and can't pick up wifi at all. I looked around the internet and found a supposed fix that everyone said " fixed theirs with ease". Of course not involved switching to root user then /system/library/extensions/ioplatforrmpluginfamily.kext/contents/plugins/acpi_smc_platform plugin.kext/contents/resources then removing the macbookpro8_1p.list( my model id) to another location and restarting my mac. This did speed up the cpu somewhat (as viewed in activity monitor) but did nothing for the fan and wifi issues. Ive also tried taking lion out and reinstalling but didnt get a boot disc when I bought the mac so cant do a install from disc. I've changed my hard drive also and still no joy. Any help would be well appreciated as its frying my napper. Thanks

  2. Comment for the author…. First off, nice video! Thanks for the hint. I forgot that the setting was in the Edit menu item. I found it much easier to go directly to Directory Utility from Spotlight Search. It is less confusing then going through all the clicks in Preferences.

  3. Im on mac os sierra and I want to modify the info.plist file in bootcamp. Each time I want to unlock the file it says " the operation can't be completed because you don't have the necessary permission". Lets say I copy and paste it to the desktop, edit it there and drag it back in to bootcamp folder my cursor shows a white circle with a bar, and if I were to delete the file from boot camp it says "can't be modified or deleted because it's required by macOS. SO I want to know how I can gain full control and modify that file…

  4. Thanks for the tutorial, however; I feel it could have been better if you included how to exit from the root user, given its "superpowers" and its implications? cheers

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