ChangeShortName
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Change the short username in OS X.   Shareware
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  • ChangeShortName has been discontinued
  • Developer
    James Bucanek & Dan Frakes
ChangeShortName is an easy-to-use utility that does the dirty work involved in changing the short name of a user's account in Mac OS X (versions 10.4.x and 10.3.x). It can also repair some problems that occur when a user has attempted to change their short username manually and done so incorrectly. For safety, it backs up the NetInfo database beforehand.

Changing your short username is a serious procedure, but ChangeShortName makes doing so easier and safer.

ChangeShortName is "donationware" by James Bucanek and Dan Frakes. Be sure to read the included documentation before
What's New
Version 1.3:
  • Complete rewrite of the ChangeShortName Helper application, which has been renamed ChangeShortName (i.e., without the "Helper"). The new version is a Cocoa application with a new interface that's easier to use and provides more-and more useful-information and feedback. The downside of this rewrite is that the ChangeShortName application is no longer compatible with Mac OS X 10.2.x; users of Jaguar will need to use the standalone changeshortname.command script.
  • ChangeShortName's underlying shell script-which does all the dirty work-has been renamed changeshortname.command to differentiate it from the main ChangeShortName application and is now embedded within the application package. (The raw script is still provided separately, but you no longer need to keep it with the application for the application to work properly.)
  • The application no longer launches Terminal to run the underlying script, which should make ChangeShortName less intimidating for non-Terminal-savvy users; shell output is now displayed directly in the application window.
  • Added a Restart option to both the ChangeShortName script (-r) and the graphical interface (via a checkbox); this option is recommended if you're changing the short username of a user that's currently logged in.
  • Changed the underlying script to work with an existing short username that contains a hyphen (-). Because Apple warns against including a hyphen in a short username, previous versions of ChangeShortName would not attempt to change such a name, but we had enough requests for this capability that we added it.
  • Edited the NetInfo-recovery process in this ReadMe to work around a >console bug in Mac OS X.
Version 1.3:
  • Complete rewrite of the ChangeShortName Helper application, which has been renamed ChangeShortName (i.e., without the "Helper"). The new version is a Cocoa application with a new interface that's easier to use and provides more-and more useful-information and feedback. The downside of this rewrite is that the ChangeShortName application is no longer compatible with Mac OS X 10.2.x; more...
Requirements
Intel/PPC, Mac OS X 10.4 (Tiger) or earlier. (Can be used with Mac OS X 10.2 using the included Terminal script.) NOTE: The current version, 1.3, is NOT compatible with Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard); an update will be released.

*Previously available here



MacUpdate - ChangeShortName




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ChangeShortName User Discussion (Write a Review)
ver. 1.x:
(7)
Your rating: Now say why...
Overall:
(7)

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burypromote

+10
Bb553 commented on 13 Aug 2012
Update: Available for download at the URL listed below (which is a dropbox.com page from danfrakes.com )

DanFrakes.com
[ http://dl.dropbox.com/u/622542/danfrakesweb/ChangeShortName.html ]

ChangeShortName v1.3 (~424k)
[Version 1.3]


burypromote
+1

+1

quicksilver57 reviewed on 26 Aug 2011
Excellent! Worked just fine with Tiger OS X 10.4.11. Before I ran this app I made sure that Disable automatic log-in was OFF- (System Preferences --> Accounts). Disabled Filevault-(System Preferences -Security). I also ran disk utility to make sure everything was ok. I created a new admin account-from this second account I ran changeshortname. I only changed my 'short name' (It gives you a choice of just the short name OR both short name and long name). Everything works fine!!
[Version 1.3]


burypromote
+1

+55
John-Sawyer-CJS tipped on 08 May 2008
Dan Frakes wrote an article on how to change the shortname under OS 10.5, which mainly describes the same Control-click or right-click on the user's account in the Accounts prefpane, but he includes some recommended extra steps:

http://www.macworld.com/article/132693/2008/03/changeshortusername.html
[Version 1.3]


burypromote

+55
John-Sawyer-CJS commented on 23 Dec 2007
The developer (Dan Frakes) says ChangeShortName 1.3 isn't compatible with Leopard, which makes sense given how many changes were made in Leopard. His web site doesn't say what would happen if you tried it, but I wouldn't try it just to find out.
[Version 1.3]


burypromote
+1

+8
ssnickerer commented on 24 Nov 2007
This feature is built into Leopard, so the developer should not bother releasing a newer version.

Go to System Preferences, Accounts. Unlock the padlock. Right click the account in question and select "Advanced Options...". Change the short name, click OK, and restart.
[Version 1.3]

1 Reply

burypromote
-1

+20
macspectrum replied on 09 Apr 2008
when using Leopard's built in short name change option, don't forget that;

for some 3rd party mice, the "right click" won't work, so use "control-click" instead
burypromote
+1

+1

John Musbach reviewed on 18 Nov 2007
This program is great, it makes changing short names a snap in Mac OS X Tiger. It can't get much simpler then this, simply select the short name you want to change, specify the new short name (and new non short name if you wish), and click the change button. Within a matter of seconds the changes are made and you're done. Absolutely great piece of software, a real asset to the mac community. Thanks!
[Version 1.3]


burypromote

+1
swgs1 commented on 30 May 2007
Accounts Enhancer was a great solution for this back in 10.3, but it has been unreliable and seems to have been left dead in the water by its developer since the release of 10.4 Tiger.

Thanks for releasing ChangeShortName to the public and as donation-ware.
[Version 1.3]


burypromote
sleepyhead commented on 18 Apr 2006
Wife bought new MacBook Pro, so I took full ownership of our beautiful 20" iMac (Intel CoreDuo) ...

Problem: main account settings (SHORT NAME) under her name. Thought I could ignore it. But it finally got to me. Why can't the bloody thing just show MY name in the account short list?

Tried establishing a new account (under MY short name) and switching over our iPhoto, our iTunes, documents, settings, applications, etc. etc. -- I spent 45 minutes and barely made a dent.

Downloaded and installed ChangeShortName, and ran it under the Admin account, using the OS X GUI (I'm much too chicken to enter Terminal.)

Much nail biting: it felt like I was performing brain surgery on my iMac. After logging out of the Admin account, OS X wouldn't let me log into my wife's OLD re-named account. Intense fear. What's going on? A few moments went by where I thought: MY GOD WHAT HAVE I DONE!???

Re-start the system. Log into my NEW SHORT NAME ACCOUNT (formerly my wife's).

Everything's peachy! Smiles all around. Had to direct iPhoto to the photo library on the hard drive, but that was the only hiccup. iTunes, MS Office, iPhoto, etc. etc. -- everything works 100%!!!

Main advice: follow the instructions in the .pdf file VERY CAREFULLY. If you use this utility properly, chances are you'll be OK.
[Version 1.1.3]


burypromote

+46

Jolly-Roger reviewed on 10 Mar 2006
Fantastic, must-have utility!

I've used this utility to change short user names on multiple Macs with Mac OS X 10.4.x. I've even used it via the command line through an ssh session connected to a remote Mac I maintain for a family member.

The utility has worked as advertised on every system I have used it on. While there are instructions for what to do if a rename goes awray, I have yet to need them. It's proven to be very reliable.

The only potential gotcha is one that is readily mentioned in the documentation: after a rename, you may need to tell certain applications (iPhoto in my case) where the new library is. Luckily, doing this is fairly straight-forward!

Overall, this utility is *THE* way to change your short user name in current versions of Mac OS X. Highly recommended!
[Version 1.1.3]


burypromote


Anonymous reviewed on 15 Oct 2005
The download URL doesn't seem to work :-(
[Version 1.1.3]

1 Reply

burypromote

+46
Jolly-Roger commented on 10 Mar 2006
The download link appears to be an FTP link to an FTP server. It's possible your web browser is not able (for whatever reason) to download stuff through the FTP protocol.

Try this one instead:

http://www.twilightandbarking.com/FTP/Public/Software/ChangeShortName/ChangeShortName-1.1.3.dmg

Or try using an FTP client to download it from the FTP URL.
There are currently no troubleshooting comments. If you are experiencing a problem with this app, please post a comment.

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Downloads:57,476
Version Downloads:43,411
Type:Utilities : System
License:Shareware
Date:26 May 2007
Platform:PPC 32 / Intel 32 / OS X
Price:Free0.00
Overall (Version 1.x):
Features:
Ease of Use:
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ChangeShortName is an easy-to-use utility that does the dirty work involved in changing the short name of a user's account in Mac OS X (versions 10.4.x and 10.3.x). It can also repair some problems that occur when a user has attempted to change their short username manually and done so incorrectly. For safety, it backs up the NetInfo database beforehand.

Changing your short username is a serious procedure, but ChangeShortName makes doing so easier and safer.

ChangeShortName is "donationware" by James Bucanek and Dan Frakes. Be sure to read the included documentation before using it.


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