Using your iCloud ID to log into your Mac? Think again

19 April 2016, 00:39

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Over at the superb Der Flounder sysadmin blog, Rich Trouton points out a strange discrepancy in user password management in OS X 10.11.4, the latest update to OS X.

Should you open System Preferences, then click the Users & Groups icon, and attempt to change your own password, you’ll find the option to use your iCloud sign-in username and password has vanished. It was there until very recently, and was originally introduced with OS X Yosemite.

Rather worryingly, however, if you configure a clean or update installation of OS X 10.11.4, the option to use your iCloud sign-in is still there during the installation steps.

So what’s going on? Rich stops short of speculating but points out the official support document from Apple no longer mentions using iCloud to sign-in either.

Curiouser and curiouser. Has Apple removed the option for security reasons? Is there a bug? Why is Apple always so damned secretive?

Whatever the case, if you’re using your iCloud details to sign-in to your Mac, you might want to take a look at setting a local username and password. Again, this can be done via Users & Groups icon of System Preferences – just click the Change Password button, where you’ll be shown a choice to Use Separate Password.

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