If you find it difficult to memorize your passwords, Apple has a solution for you with its built-in feature. But is it any good? And how does it compete with other password managers? Let’s find out what Mac Keychain is about.
Jan 05, 2021 · 3 min read
Keychain is a password manager developed by Apple for macOS and iOS systems. It can:
Keychain runs in the background, so you may not even notice its presence. To manage your Keychain data on Apple devices, you should use the Keychain Access app, where you can check and change passwords and delete entries.
Enabling iCloud Keychain is fairly simple. Here’s how:
1. Go to Settings;
2. Tap Passwords and Accounts;
3. Choose iCloud;
4. Choose iCloud again;
5. Choose Keychain;
6. Enable the toggle next to it.
1. Click the Apple logo in the top-left corner and select System Preferences;
2. Go to Apple ID;
3. Choose iCloud;
4. Find the Keychain logo and tick the box next to it.
After enabling it, Keychain starts operating in the background. The same steps apply if you wish to turn off your Keychain — just turn the toggles off.
In its default settings, Keychain login uses the same password as your Mac user account. If you change your user password, the passwords are no longer synced, and you have to reset your Keychain too. Just note that, by doing this, you will lose all your stored passwords, so use it only as the last resort in case you don’t remember your old user password.
Here are the steps to reset your Keychain:
1. Open the Keychain Access app;
2. Go to Keychain Access in the menu bar and choose Preferences;
3. Click Reset My Default Keychains;
4. Enter your new user password and click Ok.
While the feature is relatively safe due to being protected by 256-bit AES encryption, you should also consider the following Mac Keychain issues:
NordVPN stores your account password in the Keychain for safety and convenience. Each time you connect, it will ask the Keychain for your password, and you may have to enter it in the prompt window. If you don’t want NordVPN to store your password, you can use its OpenVPN version, which doesn’t do that, or simply disable Keychain.
If you change your NordVPN password (or any password), Keychain won’t automatically change it, so you will have to do so manually. Just open the Keychain app and:
1. Choose Passwords on the left-hand side. Then choose the NordVPN account from the list and double-click on it;
2. Click Show Password;
3. Enter login Keychain password when prompted and click Allow;
4. Click on the key button next to a password;
5. Type the password in the Suggestion field and close the window;
6. Untick Show Password and save changes.
If you find Keychain unsafe and inconvenient, check out our secure NordPass manager as a viable alternative.
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