Restoring deleted user accounts on MAC OS X ...

Discussion in 'Apple' started by Loic Domaigne, Jan 24, 2004.

  1. Hello,

    First I'd like to apologize if I ask the wrong NG, or if my
    description of the problem is a bit too UNIXish and not MACish
    enough... But, unfortunately, I never worked with MAC before. So, pls,
    let me known.

    A friend of mine lost all her files, because her husband intentionally
    deleted from the MAC OS X GUI all the existing accounts (also her
    account, his account and sysAdmin account). She lost very important
    files - both from a business and personal perspectives. Unfortunately,
    she didn't made any backup (That's, elas, how people usually learn why
    they should backup).

    So, I tried today to get a picture what could be done, and so on.
    Using the Unix Terminal, I found out that the user accounts seems to
    be still there. They got apparently renamed from "/Users/User Name" to
    "/Users/User Name Deleted" (The right name is "/Users/User Name
    Geloescht" but I guess that's due to the fact that the German language
    is selected by default).

    We were able to copy all those files in a newly created user account,
    as well set the right ownership and right access. But, when we try to
    open a file, we got the following message (again free translation from
    de->us) from the application:

    "wrong access right, or the file has been locked already."

    So, there still something to do in order to restore the account...
    Does someone have ideas / hints / pointers how to proceed??? That
    would be really nice!

    Thanks in Advance,
    Loic.
     
    Loic Domaigne, Jan 24, 2004
    #1
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  2. Loic Domaigne <> wrote:

    > First I'd like to apologize if I ask the wrong NG, or if my
    > description of the problem is a bit too UNIXish and not MACish
    > enough... But, unfortunately, I never worked with MAC before. So, pls,
    > let me known.
    >
    > A friend of mine lost all her files, because her husband intentionally
    > deleted from the MAC OS X GUI all the existing accounts (also her
    > account, his account and sysAdmin account). She lost very important
    > files - both from a business and personal perspectives. Unfortunately,
    > she didn't made any backup (That's, elas, how people usually learn why
    > they should backup).
    >
    > So, I tried today to get a picture what could be done, and so on.
    > Using the Unix Terminal, I found out that the user accounts seems to
    > be still there. They got apparently renamed from "/Users/User Name" to
    > "/Users/User Name Deleted" (The right name is "/Users/User Name
    > Geloescht" but I guess that's due to the fact that the German language
    > is selected by default).
    >
    > We were able to copy all those files in a newly created user account,
    > as well set the right ownership and right access. But, when we try to
    > open a file, we got the following message (again free translation from
    > de->us) from the application:
    >
    > "wrong access right, or the file has been locked already."
    >
    > So, there still something to do in order to restore the account...
    > Does someone have ideas / hints / pointers how to proceed??? That
    > would be really nice!


    The files probably still belong to the deleted user, so access is denied
    if you try to open them while logged in as another user. Logging in as
    'root' should give you access to the files and give you the possibility
    to change their privileges to the new user. Another thing you may try
    (and try it first) is to run Disk Utility and run 'Repair Privileges'.
    If you placed the files in the home directory of the new user, then Disk
    Utility may be intelligent enough to know that the privileges should be
    set for that user and change them if they aren't.


    --
    Johan W. Elzenga johan<<at>>johanfoto.nl
    Editor / Photographer http://www.johanfoto.nl/
     
    Johan W. Elzenga, Jan 25, 2004
    #2
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  3. Loic Domaigne

    Jim Guest

    In <1g84927.9ohwg71qtacmmN%> Johan W. Elzenga wrote:
    | Loic Domaigne <> wrote:
    |
    | > First I'd like to apologize if I ask the wrong NG, or if my
    | > description of the problem is a bit too UNIXish and not MACish
    | > enough... But, unfortunately, I never worked with MAC before. So,
    | > pls, let me known. A friend of mine lost all her files, because her
    | > husband intentionally deleted from the MAC OS X GUI all the existing
    | > accounts (also her account, his account and sysAdmin account). She
    | > lost very important files - both from a business and personal
    | > perspectives. Unfortunately, she didn't made any backup (That's,
    | > elas, how people usually learn why they should backup). So, I tried
    | > today to get a picture what could be done, and so on. Using the Unix
    | > Terminal, I found out that the user accounts seems to be still there.
    | > They got apparently renamed from "/Users/User Name" to "/Users/User
    | > Name Deleted" (The right name is "/Users/User Name Geloescht" but I
    | > guess that's due to the fact that the German language is selected by
    | > default). We were able to copy all those files in a newly created
    | > user account, as well set the right ownership and right access. But,
    | > when we try to open a file, we got the following message (again free
    | > translation from de->us) from the application: "wrong access right,
    | > or the file has been locked already." So, there still something to
    | > do in order to restore the account... Does someone have ideas /
    | > hints / pointers how to proceed??? That would be really nice!
    |
    | The files probably still belong to the deleted user, so access is
    | denied if you try to open them while logged in as another user.
    | Logging in as 'root' should give you access to the files and give you
    | the possibility to change their privileges to the new user. Another
    | thing you may try (and try it first) is to run Disk Utility and run
    | 'Repair Privileges'. If you placed the files in the home directory of
    | the new user, then Disk Utility may be intelligent enough to know
    | that the privileges should be set for that user and change them if
    | they aren't.

    I believe DiskWrangler can do this while logged in to new user...
    without having to log in to 'root'. DiskWrangler can be found on <www.
    versiontracker.com>... Jim
     
    Jim, Jan 25, 2004
    #3
  4. Loic Domaigne

    Simon Slavin Guest

    On 24/01/2004, Loic Domaigne wrote in message
    <>:

    > We were able to copy all those files in a newly created user account,
    > as well set the right ownership and right access. But, when we try to
    > open a file, we got the following message (again free translation from
    > de->us) from the application:
    >
    > "wrong access right, or the file has been locked already."


    There's a good chance that the files you restored into place now have
    the wrong owner or access rights. The Unix commands 'chmod' and 'chown'
    can be used to restore the proper user's access to those files but it's
    hard for me to tell you the exact command-strings to type to do it
    without further information.

    What you might be able to do is to use the 'Get Info' Finder window
    on the user's home folder and to use the 'Apply to enclosed items' to
    set all the files in them at once.

    Simon.
    --
    Posted using test version of software.
    Please tell me if anything isn't right.
     
    Simon Slavin, Jan 26, 2004
    #4
  5. Hello Johan,
    Hello Jim,

    > | The files probably still belong to the deleted user, so access is
    > | denied if you try to open them while logged in as another user.
    > | Logging in as 'root' should give you access to the files and give you
    > | the possibility to change their privileges to the new user. Another
    > | thing you may try (and try it first) is to run Disk Utility and run
    > | 'Repair Privileges'. If you placed the files in the home directory of
    > | the new user, then Disk Utility may be intelligent enough to know
    > | that the privileges should be set for that user and change them if
    > | they aren't.


    I did a: chown -R NewUser
    after copying the files...

    But maybe there is still problem to access the directory where the
    file is. Though, as far as I remember, we acccessed the file using the
    GUI. But when we opened the file with the corresponding app, we got
    the error message.


    > I believe DiskWrangler can do this while logged in to new user...
    > without having to log in to 'root'. DiskWrangler can be found on <www.
    > versiontracker.com>... Jim


    Thanks for your advices concerning DiskWrangler and the Disk Utility.
    We'll look into that first.


    Keep you inform about the progress,
    Loic.
     
    Loic Domaigne, Jan 26, 2004
    #5
  6. All,

    We did it!!! Thanks a lot for your help...

    The problem wasn't the file itself, but the symlink to the
    corresponding application that has wrong rights. A chown did it!

    You really made someone happy, you know. That nice person had a lot of
    troubles right now, and couldn't afford to pay a specialist to repair
    her computer...

    Again,
    Thx everybody!

    Loic.

    P.S: Ok, I used a "pure Unix" solution. I shall now try your MACish
    advises on the second accounts to restore.
     
    Loic Domaigne, Feb 8, 2004
    #6
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