OS X: how-to fix unrecognized User Password

OS X Lion LogoOS X nearly drove me nuts today, as it suddenly stopped accepting my Username/Password combination for authentication. First this happened when I wanted to relogin from the Screensaver, worked again after a hard-restart to login to the OS, just to come back when working inside OS X and trying to authenticate in order to delete a protected folder.

Searching the web for this issues, I stumbled on this post at brilliantdays.comhttp://brilliantdays.com/mac-not-accepting-correct-password/

Some people there experienced the exact same behavior as me. For most of them, the solution seemed to lie in the Keyboard Input Source settings – where they had configured additional Input Languages.

So I had a look at my settings and saw, that I had also enabled the “Keyboard & Character Viewer” Input Source! First I wanted to check, if this is really the issue, by enabling the on-screen Keyboard Viewer and see, if I am really putting in wrong characters in the authentication window. But it looked all good (don’t get confused by the orange colored keyboard buttons, they just indicate “help keys” to create special characters, like ô ä etc.).

OSX Authentication Fails - Keyboard Input

What I did then was just uncheck all active sources via the “On” checkbox (except my preferred, main language) – and voilà, suddenly OS X accepted my Password input again!

OSX Authentication Fails - Input Sources

It really seems like there is a bug in Mac OS X, that randomly switches to another active Input Source for the Password input field. Let’s hope, Apple is aware of this issue and will fix this for the future – as this is definitely a really confusing problem to identify and correct.


Alternatively, if you don’t want to disable all – in fact helpful – Input Sources, you may just activate the Keyboard Input Source selector in the login window. This option can be found inside System Preferences > Users & Groups > Login Options

OSX Authentication Fails - Show Input Sources in Login Window

2 thoughts on “OS X: how-to fix unrecognized User Password

  1. what an annoying bug!
    btw: what other language inputs sources did you have besides swiss german? US yeah maybe for programming or dvorak if your really special, or maybe kyrillic russian like my friend who uses it for practicing his russian, but you will have to remember all of the keys BY HEART!

  2. @Dikk: it was quite odd, because I didn’t have a real language activated, but the Character Viewer! (you know, for Emojis 😉 )

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