Archive for July, 2012

Upgrading your FileVault 2 encrypted Mac to Mountain Lion

July 28, 2012 Leave a comment

One nice thing about using FileVault 2 to encrypt your Mac is that Apple’s OS installers are aware of how to work with a FileVault 2-encrypted Mac.* For example, you can upgrade from Mac OS X 10.7.4 to Mac OS X 10.8.0 on a FileVault 2-encrypted Mac using the same process that you would use on an unencrypted Mac.

* I had previously been wrong on the Internet about this subject.

Since this is a process that’s more easily shown than explained, I’ve made a five minute video showing the process as I saw it.

Here’s the procedure I used:

  1. Logged into my FileVault 2 encrypted Mac
  2. Launched Install OS X Mountain from /Applications
  3. Selected my boot drive and let it proceed with the upgrade.
  4. The upgrade restarted the Mac.
  5. The FileVault 2 pre-boot login screen appeared and I logged in.
  6. The upgrade automatically proceeded after the FileVault 2 login screen
  7. After the upgrade process finished, the Mac restarted.
  8. The FileVault 2 pre-boot login screen appeared and I logged in.
  9. I clicked the buttons to skip the Apple ID setup
  10. I then verified that I was now on 10.8.0.

Note: The video has been edited to artificially reduce the amount of time the installers take to run. Run time of the pre-edited video was 41 minutes.

Building a Grand Unified Xcode 4.4 installer for both Lion and Mountain Lion

July 26, 2012 13 comments

Apple has released Xcode 4.4 through the Mac App Store for all Macs running 10.7.4 and higher, including Mountain Lion. This application, on first launch, then installs the other Xcode tools. The command line tools can be installed separately through the Xcode preferences, in the Downloads section.

Screen Shot 2012-07-26 at 11.41.12 AM

For my users who are developers, I wanted to include Xcode 4.4 in their new machine builds and also install the command line tools automatically. I also wanted to build one Xcode 4.4 installer that worked for both 10.7.x and 10.8.x. The Xcode 4.4 application itself runs fine on both Lion and Mountain Lion, but the command line tools are OS-specific.

To do this, I used a modified form of the methodology referenced in this post to repackage Xcode 4.4 for distribution without needing an Apple ID. See below the jump for the procedure.

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Encrypting non-boot volumes in Mountain Lion

July 25, 2012 Leave a comment

Mountain Lion has made encrypting non-boot volumes without erasing them a much easier process than it was in Lion. In Lion, you needed to go to the command line. In Mountain Lion, encryption is a right-click away. See below the jump for the details.

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Installing Mac OS X 10.8.x on an erased hard drive using DeployStudio and createOSXinstallPkg

July 25, 2012 5 comments

As a follow-up to Greg Neagle’s unveiling of createOSXinstallPkg, a installer package-based tool for deploying Mac OS X 10.7.x and 10.8.x, I wanted to do a sequel to my earlier post on installing OS X using DeployStudio. Using packages created by createOSXinstallPkg, you can use DeployStudio to do an automatic clean install of Mac OS X 10.7.x or 10.8.x and correctly create the Recovery HD partition. See below the jump for the procedure.

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Using fdesetup with Mountain Lion’s FileVault 2

July 25, 2012 48 comments

With the release of Mountain Lion, Apple has introduced fdesetup, a new command-line tool for enabling, administering and disabling Apple’s FileVault 2 encryption. This tool gives Mac administrators a number of command-line abilities, including the following:

  • Enable or disable FileVault 2 encryption on a particular Mac
  • Use an individual recovery key, an institutional recovery key, or both kinds of recovery key.
  • Enable one or multiple user accounts at the time of encryption
  • Get a list of FileVault 2-enabled users on a particular machine
  • Add additional users after FileVault has been enabled
  • Remove users from the list of FileVault enabled accounts
  • Report on the status of FileVault 2 encryption or decryption

See below the jump for examples of what you can do with it.

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Removing an unwanted photo from Outlook 2011’s Me contact

July 13, 2012 8 comments

One of my users had a problem, where he suddenly had a photo of himself appearing as part of emails he was sending. He didn’t want the photo being appended to outgoing emails, so he asked how to get rid of it. After some research, I was able to remove it. See below the jump for the procedure.

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Keychain Minder no longer available at

July 6, 2012 1 comment

It looks as though Keychain Minder, the venerable utility for keeping your login keychain in sync with your account’s password, is no longer available from

After some searching, I found an copy of Keychain Minder 1.5 (the latest available version) and posted a zipped copy to my GitHub repo . If you need it, please get it from there.

If you want to modify the displayed text, see here for how to do this with Xcode 4.x:

Categories: Mac administration
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