East Bay Solutions

Cannot log into Mac with NetID and password



Problem or Question

Cannot log on to my Macintosh computer.



OSX 10.5/10.6


Solution or Answer

Set the computer clock to the correct time, or rebind the Macintosh to the Domain, or disconnect the Macintosh from network to log on.


Set Clock

  1. Log on with local Admin account.
  2. Open System Preferences.
  3. Open Date & Time.
  4. Uncheck "Set date & time automatically."
  5. Check "Set date & time automatically" and make sure it adjusts appropriately.
  6. Log out and try to log in with your NetID and password.


Rebind Mac to the Domain

  1. Log in with local Admin account
  2. In the Top Menu Bar:  Go => Utilities
  3. Open Directory Utility
  4. Click Show Advanced Settings button
  5. Click the Services tab
  6. Double-click "Active Directory"
  7. Click Unbind.
  8. Enter Domain account info with rights to make changes to AD.
  9. Click Bind.
  10. Enter Domain Account info with rights to make changes to AD.
  11. Restart the computer.


Disconnect Mac

  1. Unplug the network cable from the Mac [Usually a yellow or blue cable]
  2. Log on using a NetID and password that have previously logged on to the computer.
  3. If successful, correctly set the clock and reconnect the network cable.



Mac OSX does not update the local clock until after log on, but Active Directory does not allow log on unless the server clock and the computer clock are within a few minutes of each other. Most Macintoshes that are bound to a domain are setup with a "mobile" account, allowing the user to log in when not connected to the network. The Mobile Account feature was designed for notebook computers, but most desktop computers on AD are also configured for Mobile accounts. Logging in while disconnected uses cached account information. Be sure to check the clock.

Article Details

Last Updated
03rd June 2015 02:18:29 pm

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