Making a user account an administrator on Mac (Terminal)

Tags mac


This article outlines the steps for granting a user admin rights on a Mac using Terminal. This can be useful for setting the privileges before a user has signed in for the first time.


  • macOS
    • terminal


  1. SSH into computer, or find and add it to Apple Remote Desktop.
  2. Run the following command: dscl . -append /Groups/admin GroupMembership username

Please note: An alternative method is to use the following command, but it will only work on Macs bound to Active Directory (not common)

  • dseditgroup -o edit -a username -t user admin
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Article ID: 1981
Fri 5/29/20 1:52 PM
Tue 2/6/24 4:20 PM

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