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In previous versions of Mac OS X you created and controlled the powers of users in the Account system preference. Lion has renamed this preference to Users & Groups and let's see how it works. We go to System Preferences, down here in System, that's the first entry, Users & Groups. In order for us to modify this we are going to have to click the lock icon. I will enter my administrator's password, and click Unlock. Now by default you see two users. The administrative user, and that's me in this case, and guest user.
Now it happens that we have a couple of other users accounts set up on this Mac, because it's used for other lynda authors, but on your Mac you should see only these two entries, Admin and Guest User. This Guest User account is there only to allow guests accessing the Mac through a network connection to share files with this Mac. Now in the Password tab you see a number of items. One is your user's picture. If you like, you can change that by clicking on the triangle and choosing a different picture. You can also change your password by clicking on Change Password.
In order to do this you have to enter your old password, so you need to know that, and then enter a new password and verify it. If you like, put a password hint in there. So should you forget the password, maybe the hint will remind you what it is, and then click Change Password. You have your full name. You can change that if you like to, but you can't change your short name easily. just your Full name, and if you like you can set your Apple ID. Click Set. It will ask you for your Apple ID and your password, enter that and you're set. Or if you don't have one, you can create an Apple ID.
You can also look at your Address Book card. Click there, Open, Address Book will launch and then it will show you your card. If you have one set. We don't have that set up currently. You can allow the user to administer this computer. Well, of course I am the Admin user so that is going to be on. You can also enable parental controls. We are going to look at parental controls in another movie. So we'll worry about that later. Login Items will show you any applications that are configured to launch at startup. You can add additional applications if you like just by clicking on the plus button, navigate to that.
So for example if I wanted iChat to start when I launch my computer. I simply select it and click Add and that's done. You can also remove items here. iTunes Helper for example. Not a good idea, because iTunes depends on it, but if I wanted to get rid of it, I could just by clicking on the Minus button. Now let's take a look at login options. When we talked about security, we talked about not having automatic login, because it's a security risk. However, you can turn on here if you like. Automatic login can log into me or if I were one of these other users, I could have it log into their account.
When you log in you can see a list of users or you can see name and password. What this means is it's not going to show the name and password of that user, but rather have a Name and Password field. This too is a little more secure. The Mac will boot up. It will show you a name and password field and you have to enter that information. Also, on the login screen it can show the Sleep, Restart, and Shutdown buttons. You can turn that off if you like. I like to have them on, because sometimes when I get to that login screen, I want to sleep the computer because I need to go off and do something else. And there are a bunch of other options.
The one I want to call to your attention is Show fast user switching menu. When you do that you can choose how to show your username, plus once you do that your name appears up in the menu bar. You can then switch to another user simply by selecting that user and then entering the password for that user. It's convenient, but we are not going to have it on for right now. Great! So we've got some users set up. How about if we create a new one? To do that click on the Plus button. You have various kinds of accounts you can use.
An Administrator can install software and do a lot of things that other users can't do. You can throw things away for example if you have Administrator passwords. A standard account doesn't have the privilege to install software and can't throw some things away. So if you're setting this up for somebody else, maybe it's for your child for example who's old enough to actually control a computer, but you don't want them installing software, maybe set up a standard account for them. Manage with Parental Controls, again we are going to talk about parental controls in another movie.
So I can tell you about that later. Shared Only is for people who can log into your computer and just use the sharing services. So they can go to a shared folder for example, but they can't do other things on there. And then you can create a group share. What this says is-- let's say Joe, Mary, and Bill all had accounts on this computer. I could create a group for Joe and Mary, but exclude Bill. Joe and Mary could log into this group account and then they could control the computer there, but Bill couldn't get into that group because I haven't allowed that to happen.
So let's say I am setting up an administrative user, I would enter the name. The name of the account. This is the short name. So in my case full name would be Christopher Breen, short name might be Chris, Password, Verify, Password hint, and then Create User. When you do that, within the Users folder here on your hard drive you would see a folder that has the short name of the users that you've created. And we'll cancel out. So let's take a look at that login screen and see what it looks like.
By default you boot your Mac, you hit the login screen, which is kind of this cloth colored gray background, and you see the name of every user account on the Mac. At the bottom you see a Sleep button, a Restart button, and a Shutdown button. Click one of these and it does exactly as it suggests. To log into an account simply choose that account and that icon goes to the middle of the window. Below it appears a Password field. Just enter your password, press the Return key, and you log into that account. If you find that you've come to an account that you didn't want log into, there is a little left pointing arrow below that icon.
Click that and you move back to the login screen where you can choose another user. So now I am going to log into my account, I'll enter my password, press Return, and I move into that account. And because by default Lion remembers where you left off we are back to the Users & Groups screen. Simple enough. We'll quit System Preferences. And that's what you need to know about Users & Groups.
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