Skip to main content
Holcomb Building
Information Technology

Mac OS X Keychain

The Mac OS X keychain is a feature that was created to simplify the use of your computer by reducing the number of passwords you have to keep track of. You start with a single keychain, which is automatically created the first time you log in to your Mac OS X user account. Your default keychain has the same password as your Butler login password or computer login password. This keychain is unlocked automatically when you log in to your mac and is referred to in the Keychain Access menus as the "login" keychain.

Whenever you use a password for anything like Facebook, email, amazon, eBay, etc. all of those log in passwords will be stored in your login keychain. If it is your first time logging in to one of these places you will be asked if you want to save this password in your keychain. If you select yes then the password will be stored in your login keychain without prompting you each time if you want to save it or not. 

Common Keychain Issues

Users cannot get onto the Butler Secure Wireless because they have an old password stored in their keychain, which does not allow them to connect when they enter their new password. This most often happens after a password change.

  1. Before you troubleshoot the keychain resolution please turn off the airport by opening up the airport and then selecting "turn airport off". (Note it may also say "turn Wi-Fi off")

  2. To access the keychain, click on the spotlight search in the upper right hand corner of the Mac and type "keychain" (or open "Finder>Applications>Utilities>Keychain Access").  "Keychain Access" will appear and this is what you will want to click on.

  3. Delete any butler certificates or other butler related things within the System keychain. (Ex:,, WPA:BUWPAnet, BU Secure Wireless, Class 3 Primary Certification Authority, and Verisign)
  4. Click on the airport menu and choose "Open Network Preferences…"

    When you click on that you will see a screen that looks like this:
  5. Within that window select "Advanced" and you will see a screen that looks like this:
  6. In here you will see a list of all of your Wi-Fi networks. You will want to delete all the ones that say "BU" to do this, Highlight the network that has Butler in it and hit the minus sign underneath the window with the list of networks.
  7. After doing this hit "ok" and then on the next screen hit "apply".
  8. Once that is done turn the airport back on and select "BU Secure Wireless".
  9. Next you will be prompted for a username and password. Type your Butler username and password and hit "enter".
  10. Then a new window will appear that is the Certificate for the secure wireless. Click on "Show Certificate" in the bottom left corner of this window.      
  11. Then click on trust and make sure all of the fields say "Always Trust". Then hit "Continue".

Now you should be connected to BU Secure Wireless. If you still have trouble connecting after following these instructions, please contact the Help Desk.