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Security (System Preferences)

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SecuritySysPrefsTiger

The Security pane of System Preferences (Mac OS X Tiger)

SecuritySystemPrefs

The Security preferences of System Preferences (Mac OS X Panther)

The Security panel of System Preferences appeared, with FileVault, as of Mac OS X 10.3 "Panther". In Mac OS X 10.4, an additional option is added to enable the use of secure virtual memory.

The Security panel provides a direct link to the options offered with FileVault. The user can set a master password, which acts as a "safety net" password to unlock any FileVault account on the Mac. (The user's own files will be encrypted using the user's own login password.)

Warning: If both passwords are forgotten, data loss may occur!

FileVault protection can also be activated. Notice that this is only possible if there is sufficient hard drive space available on the Mac. A complete copy of the Home folder must first be created.

Other options, unrelated to FileVault, include:

  • Require password to wake this computer from sleep or screen saver: This enables password protection which appears after the Mac is woken up, or when the screen saver is being deactivated.
  • Require password to unlock each system preference: The option, whether or not a password is required before every system preference (panel) is unlocked, ready for modification, can be toggled on and off here.
  • Log out after (number of minutes) of inactivity: Sets an option whereby system logout is triggered after a certain time passes by.
  • Use secure virtual memory: (Mac OS X 10.4 and later only) Enables the usage of secure virtual memory.

See also


System Preferences panels SystemPreferences

.Mac | Accounts | Appearance | Bluetooth | Classic | CDs & DVDs | ColorSync | Dashboard & Exposé | Date & Time | Desktop | Desktop & Screen Saver | Displays | Dock | Energy Saver | Exposé | General | Ink | International | Internet | iTools | Keyboard | Keyboard & Mouse | Login | Monitors | Mouse | My Account | Network | Password | Print & Fax | QuickTime | Screen Effects | Screen Saver | Security | Sharing | Software Update | Sound | Speech | Spotlight | Startup Disk | Universal Access | Users

Notes: Items in bold indicate panels of System Preferences which still exist today (Mac OS X 10.4). Items in italics are only available if the corresponding peripheral or software is installed. This list does not include third-party preference panels.

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