Login to your Mac With TouchID – MacID Tutorial

Unlock your Mac with just your fingerprint.

On September 10th 2013, Apple officially announced TouchID and gave us all a new way to login to our iPhones using our fingerprints. Being the geek that I am, I could not wait for this feature to be available to login to my Mac. However, at the time of this writing, Apple has not yet provided an option for logging into your Mac with TouchID. Apparently Kane Cheshire https://kane.codes got tired of waiting as well and created MacID for iOS and MacID for OS X to allow us the joy of logging in with just out fingerprints.

From the official MacID website macid.co:

“MacID was developed to encourage Mac users to password protect their Macs, and hopefully lower crime as a result.

The number 1 reason people don’t password protect their devices is because of time; people don’t want to be inconvenienced with typing a password over and over. With MacID you’re free to set a longer, more secure password and still unlock your Mac in seconds using Touch ID on your iOS device.”

We decided to take MacID for a test drive and were very impressed with the results. If you would like to do the same, keep reading.

Requirements

MacID will work with all Macs and iOS devices capable of Bluetooth LE, running Yosemite and iOS 8 or newer. For iOS devices that don’t have Touch ID, MacID will simply ask for the device’s passcode instead.

MacID for OS X Download

Because of the way MacID for OS X works, it is not possible for it to be sandboxed as Apple requires so it can be an official App in the OS X App Store. However, the App is signed and the author emphasizes that it should only be downloaded from an authorized source. We downloaded from macid.co and installed on our Mac.
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After install, you get a nice clean icon in your menu.

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IOS Install

Open the App Store on your iPhone and search for MacID. At the time of writing, the IOS App costs $3.99 and the desktop app is free. Once installed, the App will direct you back to the desktop App to complete the configuration.
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Configuration

Once installed, there are some setup steps that need to be completed on both your Mac and iPhone.

First on your Mac, choose your iPhone
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Then enter your password twice to confirm and save it in the App. This step allows MacID to enter your password for you when you confirm with TouchID on your iPhone.

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Once your phone is paired, you will have several options on both the Desktop and IOSApps. By default, the App will prompt you to login and access TouchID to let you scan your fingerprint. Then MacID for OS X will securely enter your password and unlock your Mac. This process also works in reverse by letting you lock you mac from your iPhone or on the drop down menu on your Mac.

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I would recommend turning on the Auto-lock when away from my Mac feature and the Proximity wake feature. This adds an additional layer of security as your Mac will lock when you and your iPhone walk out of LE Bluetooth range. It also adds a really cool Tony Stark like feeling when you walk up to your Mac and it wakes up and your iPhone automatically prompts you to scan your fingerprint to login.

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MacID3Apple will almost certainly add official support to login to your Mac with TouchID at some point in the future, but thanks to MacID, you can enjoy the convenience of logging into your Mac with TouchID now.

 

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