Mac Wifi Issue

A number of students have approached the help desk displaying an error when connecting to UBCSecure. That message states that authentication failed, please contact your system administrator. That message turns out to be ambiguous as it's not the UBCSecure credentials being rejected, but rather the computer's local username/password.

What you will find is the /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration folder has odd permissions which can't be fixed by the disk utility. In all cases I've seen, the folder and files were owned by root:root instead of root:wheel. What happens is the user is not prompted to authenticate to the computer when connecting to an enterprise wireless network. No auth is needed for home networks so those work fine.

A quick test was that I asked the student to install Google Chrome. When trying to drag the app to the application folder, no authentication message comes up and you just get an "access denied" error. 

I cannot find out why this is happening yet, but in a few cases the users had mentioned they just bought the computer and updated to 10.9.4.

So the fix:

Open terminal

sudo -s
have user type in password

cd /Library/Preferences/

rm -rf ./SystemConfiguration/
before you hit enter, explain the ramifications of performing this command. The likelihood is that there won't be any problems but things can revert to default such as finder settings. 

when the machine boots back up, it will automatically re-create the SystemConfiguration folder and files and you will now be able to connect to wifi and will be correctly prompted to authenticate.

Posted by: - Mon, Sep 8, 2014 at 1:46 PM. This article has been viewed 2880 times.
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