Submit Hint Search The Forums LinksStatsPollsHeadlinesRSS
14,000 hints and counting!

10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards System 10.6
Snow Leopard only hintIt used to be that a USB keyboard was needed to start my iMac in Single User Mode - that has changed.

Today my iMac 27" shut down while I was out. I restarted holding down Cmd+S on my Bluetooth keyboard, but forgot to plug in the USB. Lo and behold, the iMac started in SUM anyway, so I'm guessing that the feature was introduced in 10.6.6 - I haven't seen mention of it anywhere.

[crarko adds: I haven't tested this one. It is a long-needed and welcome improvement and it's good to see it finally implemented. I never got a Bluetooth keyboard because of limitations like the one mentioned here. I may change my mind about that now.]
    •    
  • Currently 3.00 / 5
  You rated: 4 / 5 (7 votes cast)
 
[12,905 views]  

10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards | 19 comments | Create New Account
Click here to return to the '10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards' hint
The following comments are owned by whoever posted them. This site is not responsible for what they say.
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: chucky23 on Jan 27, '11 08:02:54AM

Anyone able to test the other startup keyshortcuts?

- Will Option bring up the startup disk chooser?
- Will T bring up FW Target Disk Mode?
- Will Cmd-Opt O-F bring up Open Firmware?

If most of these work, I'll be in the market for a bluetooth keyboard just like crarko...

(Also, anyone with 10.6 prior to 10.6.6 able to test if it was really the last update that enabled these?)



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: stepwallace on Jan 27, '11 02:48:15PM

[Deleted - incorrectly replied to a single comment instead of overall thread]

Edited on Jan 27, '11 02:51:58PM by stepwallace



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: marook on Jan 27, '11 08:11:48AM

Hi,

It's been like this for some time, but I guess it's Hardware based - so newer Mac's can do it.
If you notice, the BT hardware ID of the included keyboard & mouse is also pre-paired with the Mac from factory now...

It works with Boot Options (Alt), Network booting (N) and maybe others..
Basically, the Mac now looks to BT devices before the kernel loads..

---
/Marook



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: scip on Jan 27, '11 08:16:02AM

This has worked for me for a while, too. I'm not sure if it worked in Leopard, but if not, it's definitely worked for most of the time 10.6 has been out and isn't new to 10.6.6.



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: Typhoon14 on Jan 27, '11 08:14:54AM

My 2007 MacBook Pro has full bluetooth support in EFI. You can use all the shortcuts (C, option, t, etc), as well as work in single-user mode.

That's not to say it's perfect. For instance, if I've been booted in Windows and I restart, I can't use Bluetooth in EFI. I'm assuming that the Mac OS communicates the current bluetooth device state to EFI, but Windows does not



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: semiotek on Jan 27, '11 08:29:55AM

But it surely can't be only a hardware thing - the same iMac wouldn't do it in 10.6.5…



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: chucky23 on Jan 27, '11 08:54:29AM

Your experience seems to be atypical, judging from the other comments, but lets hope others chime in.



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: lithoman on Jan 27, '11 12:37:25PM

In order for single user work the keyboard would have to connect before the OS loads. Any changes in keyboard behavior would be in firmware.



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: semiotek on Jan 28, '11 10:39:31AM

I *think* I have got to the bottom of this. Today I tried to invoke SUM following a restart - no luck with that but it still works after a shut down, as does Safe Mode. Could it make sense that the start up routines in the two situations are slightly different?



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: IHATELOGGINGIN12 on Jan 27, '11 10:08:27AM

On my mac I have to wake up the Bluetooth keyboard first while the screen is still gray. Once it's awake then I can use all of the normal commands.

I use this mostly to get into bootcamp. I reboot the mac, when the screen is gray but before the apple logo appears I tap the power button on the bluetooth keyboard to wake it up. Then I hold down option to select my bootcamp partition.

But the same pattern works when using the other boot time keys such as getting into single user mode, booting from DVD, etc.



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: Ronald Lanham on Jan 27, '11 10:43:01PM

Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!!

I have a new 27" iMac with a Bluetooth keyboard and the stupid Apple tech support could not give me the advice you just did!

For months whenever I needed to startup in SUM or use Target Disk Mode I had to use my cabled Apple keyboard.

Again... thanks!

Hitting the side power button on the iMac keyboard at just the right time allows the keys to be used at startup.

I had done extensive searches on this subject and could not find the answer anywhere until just now.



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: BMarsh on Jan 27, '11 01:27:51PM

This is a hardware/EFI feature, only newer Mac models support this with a bluetooth keyboard (it is possible that an older model that did not support this initially in EFI, did get an EFI update to add bluetooth keyboard EFI support, it is not something added in an OS update)

Generally iMacs that shipped with a bluetooth keyboard as a standard feature (2010) support this, earlier models may or may not.



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: chucky23 on Jan 27, '11 02:37:15PM

Is there any way via System Profiler or via the command line to test if a machine is capable?

For example, I have a last rev Mac Mini - the 2009 version without HDMI. Is there any way I can test to see if the thing supports Bluetooth on startup other than getting my hands on a Bluetooth keyboard?



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: LovableSheep on Jan 27, '11 03:57:16PM

My Mac mini (2009) supports it. I can use option, command-s, and command-v with my bluetooth keyboard at boot.



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: stepwallace on Jan 27, '11 02:51:07PM

This has been the case for some time, however it is often difficult getting the timing right which can give the impression that it won't work. (Quite often I would resort to recommending the user get a wired keyboard simply because it was "easier" for the user.)

A quick search of the apple site shows this text from the 10.4.3 delta update from back in 2008:
“Allows Apple Wireless Keyboards to work in single-user mode.”.

I'm not sure if this hint will work with any bluetooth keyboard or just Apple's own wireless one.



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: chucky23 on Jan 28, '11 05:43:27AM

"I'm not sure if this hint will work with any bluetooth keyboard or just Apple's own wireless one."

Another good question.

Hopefully, someone with a 3rd party bluetooth keyboard will chime into the discussion.

(At this point, I'm close to just buying a cheap 3rd party BT keyboard from Amazon that I can return within 30 days and giving it a try, but I'd be happy to get more info before I risk going off on a wild goose chase...)



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: jrobert on Jan 27, '11 03:05:51PM

Works with 10.6.6 on a 24" white iMac (iMac 6,1).



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: er3l on Feb 02, '11 08:53:15AM

fwiw
i have an 07 imac (aluminum/core2duo/efi) and have been using a logitech edge mac bt keyboard (which i like a lot) and have been able to use startup keyboard shortcuts for a long time. i can't say for sure if it was back in 10.5 but certainly through many version of 10.6.x



[ Reply to This | # ]
10.6: Single User Mode and Bluetooth keyboards
Authored by: GeJe on Feb 14, '11 06:39:47AM

Works with a 2006 Mac Pro !
But getting the timing right at startup is a bit tought...



[ Reply to This | # ]