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    #1

    How to Fix iMessage


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    How to Fix iMessage
    OSX & ID Configuration guide



    Version: 2.0
    Public Release: 25th Feb 2015

    iMessage Status

    RED
    AMBER
    YELLOW
    GREEN



    GREEN

    iMessage is working with
    self-generated MLB & ROM
    Values as per-guide

    Change Log

    15-02-2015: iMessage working again with basic MLB

    11-01-2015: Restoring iMessage on Genuine Macs
    06-01-2015: Latest revison to FileNVRAM 1.1.4
    31-12-2014: Apple now reacting to cloned ID's ?
    23-12-2014: Updated Status on Latest iMessage Issue
    08-12-2014: New Version of FileNVRAM now available
    27-11-2014: New iMessage issue confirmed - See News
    18-11-2014: Guide re-fresh and new section/step separators
    17-11-2014: Confirmed working with OSX 10.10.1 - See News
    14-11-2014: Update S/N & Model Identifier info (Step 3 - Clover)
    18-10-2014: Information for OS X 10.10 Yosemite.
    14-10-2014: New Version of iMessage Debug (V2.0) - See News
    09-10-2014: Added warning Step-5f: Using leached ID's
    04-10-2014: Big update to Step 5d - MLB & ROM values
    25-09-2014: Simplify Step-2 - Check Network Interfaces
    22-09-2014: Updated Info on iMessage Customer Code issue
    04-09-2014: Update Step 5d - Persistent MLB & ROM Values
    29-08-2014: Add Step 5e - Clarify NVRAM plist reset
    26-08-2014: Update Step 5d for Clover Users (MLB & ROM)
    18-08-2014: Added Section 5d - iMessage Debug utility
    10-08-2014: News: Recent iMessage Outages
    09-06-2014: Add Important note about S/N changes to Step 3
    08-06-2014: Add NIC EFI injection to Step 2
    18-05-2014: Confirmed Working - OSX Mavericks 10.9.3
    15-05-2014: Update Step 5C for Chimera V3.0+ users
    23-04-2014: Re-write and simplify Step-2
    17-04-2014: SId Bug Fix and UUID miss-match
    10-04-2014: New iMessage issues identified
    31-03-2014: Rewrite Step-5c and consolidate notes
    30-03-2014: Updated info on Credit Card expired
    06-03-2014: Updated info on issue effecting RAID users
    03-03-2014: Updated info on Apple ID validation check
    02-03-2014: Reformat and re-order entire guide
    02-03-2014: Confirmed Working - OSX Mavericks 10.9.2
    30-12-2013: Confirmed Working - OSX Mavericks 19.9.1
    26-10-2013: Updated info on BSD Name issue
    24-10-2013: Confirmed Working - OSX Mavericks 10.9.0
    30-09-2013: First release of guide made public
    25-08-2013: Confirmed Working - OSX Mountain Lion 10.8.5
    01-08-2013: Confirmed Working - OSX Mountain Lion 10.8.4

    Welcome ...

    To Version 2.0 of this guide ...

    My original guide started life as just a few paragraphs on getting iChat running on OS X Lion, back then things were simple and easy. However as Apple's messaging app and its on-line eco-system has matured getting this unique messaging system to work correctly on non-Apple hardware has become more and more complex and i've done my best to keep the guide up to date.

    In Jan 2015 it became un-manageable, news, tips, notes, fixes and procedures were all combined in to one massive post .... it wasn't intentional, I just never imagined that it would become such a popular subject and with well over 1 million views the time was right to put some some structure to it all.

    I hope you like the improvements, by breaking the guide up into different chapters and re-ordering some of the procedures new-comers to the guide should find it much easer to find the information they need.

    Note: I'll be trimming and condensing some of the information in various chapters over the coming weeks, so please bare with me if you sport things changing slightly.

    Cheers
    Jay

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    Guide Index

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    Credits

    This guide is all my own work and is the result many hours of experimentation, research and writing, however I would not have been able to join all the dots together and create the guide without the help and support of the OS X Hackingtosh community on this and other forums ... There are far too many names to list and thank individually but I hope, like me you thank everyone in the OSX community for all for their hard work and contributions.

    I hope this guide helps you fix your iMessage problems and more importantly that you gain a better understanding of how Apple's on-line eco and messaging system works and what (and why) you need to do to get iMessage working on non-Apple hardware systems.

    If you find this guide or just part of it helpful, please be sure to hit the 'Recommended' button at the top of the guide which will help others find it by keeping the guide in the recommended articles section of this site.

    Cheers
    Jay


    Attached Files Attached Files
    Last edited by jaymonkey; 02-25-2015 at 11:05 AM. Reason: Re-format for Version 2.0 of Guide

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    #2

    How to Fix iMessage - Chapter 1



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    Name:  imessage-icon.png
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    !! iMessage working with basic MLB value !!

    After all the recent iMessage set-backs for once I have some good news. It would seem that Apple has relaxed the stricter MLB verification checks that were introduced in late Nov & early Dec 2014. This seems to be a result of the recently introduced two factor authentication for iMessage.

    What does this mean ?

    It means that anyone who had iMessage working prior to the Nov 2014 changes and has not changed their ID's should find that iMessage is working again ... all you have to do is log in (you must have called apple and whitelisted your MLB & ROM)

    If you did change your MLB & ROM values and iMessage is not working for you then go back to the values that were working prior to Nov 2014 and try again (if you still have them).

    If things are still not working for you or you have a new install, try using the method of creating a MLB by simply using you OSX S/N plus additional digits as detailed in Chapter 7.1 of the guide .... you will still most likely have to call Apple if you get a customer code to white-list your MLB & ROM.

    Whats changed ?

    To be honest we won't really know why Apple has had a change of iMessage policy but we can speculate on the following:

    1. Apple reacted to the increase in cloned ID's .... since the Nov 2014 validation changes we know that the MLB & ROM must be white-listed and the MLB had to pass much stricter protocol validation checks. Since then there has been a gradual increase in the use of cloned ID's - resulting in many ID's being temporally blocked if used on more than one system at a time. This has obviously had a negative effect on many Apple customers who have genuine Mac's and used their ID's on a Hack which in turn has resulted in a big increase in iMessage support issues/calls.

    2. By making iMessage use two factor Authentication Apple has improved the security of a customers iMessage account ... so it's possible that they no longer feel the need to use internal ID checks, and rely on the AppleID for security - however it seems that 2FA is not a requirement in order to activate iMessage ?

    3. it's also possible that with the introduction of 2FA for iMessage the database was reset - and any banned/blocked ID's were un-flagged resulting in a temporary open season for iMessage - lets hope that this isn't the case and this relaxed access remains in place.

    4. Could Apple be opening up iMessage to other platforms & devices ? - its certainly a possibility, Apple have been approached by at least two other manufacturers to include a iMessage client.

    Will this Last ?

    Who knows, but lets enjoy it while we can, be sensible and mindful when building a hackingtosh, do not use cloned ID's or S/N ... etc. use the guide and everything should work .. at least for now.

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    Restoring iMessage Functionality on Genuine Macs after Cloning ID's

    Many users who cloned the MLB & ROM values from their genuine Mac's to one or more Hackingtosh systems have been unable to use iMessage and other iCloud services on all their OSX systems following the updated validation protocol changes implemented by Apple at the end of Dec 2014 (see News item dated 31st Dec 2014 below)

    Obviously this has caused a fair amount of alarm with many users posting reports that they have been black-listed/blocked ... etc. If your in this situation and need to restore iMessage on your genuine Mac then don't panic.

    First Logout of iMessage on all your OSX devices (hacks and genuine), now remove all the cloned ID's from all of your hacks, go back to non-cloned / locally generated values (see Chapter 7.1 of the guide)

    Ensure that after changing the ID's that you attempt to connect/login to iMessage on each OSX device, obviously it wont work on your hacks due to MLB failing validation but it should generate a new customer code and more importantly re-associate the device in Apples database.

    Note: You may not get a customer code on your genuine Mac, this is normal ...

    You just have to play a waiting game now ... eventually the server side security tokens will expire, after which iMessage and iCloud functionality should return to your genuine Mac without the need to contact Apple.

    If after a week or so you are still unable to use iMessage on your genuine Mac then call Apple, ensure you give them your genuine S/N and AppleID, they should be able to reset all the blocks on your AppleID after which iMessage and Facetime should work again on your genuine Mac.

    There are posts now coming in that this method does indeed work, it's possible that Apple have had to back-out or alter the validation protocols as too many genuine Mac's were being effected. It's also possible that Apple were sending a warning to us - Don't Use cloned Values if you want to continue to use iCloud services on your genuine Mac's.

    If you have an old or non-functional Mac then that's a different story. I'm using the MLB (13 digit) & ROM from my old 2009 MacBook Pro 5,5 which has a broken screen on my Sony Vaio Laptop Hack which is configured as a Macbook Pro 8,3 for the last six months and iMessage and all iCloud services have continued to work perfect - all other critical ID's such as SmUUID & OSX S/N are locally generated as detailed in the guide below.

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    Revised version of FileNVRAM 1.1.4 now available for public testing
    Revised version of iMessage Guide coming soon

    As reported in the News dated 8th Dec 2014 (See Below) an updated version of FileNVRAM (V1.1.4) was made available by the dev group xZenue which included several new features but only worked with OSX Yosemite when used in-conjunction with specific versions of Chameleon.

    I'm now able to report that dev's here at TMX have been working on a Chimera/Yosemite compatible version of FileNVRAM 1.1.4 for the past few months and it is now ready for public testing. For more information and download links please see the following thread :-

    FileNVRAM Modded for OS X Yosemite - Fix iMessage using Chameleon/Chimera

    Please be aware that this new version of FileNVRAM will not help to negate the current iMessage issues but will enable the use of NVRAM values for those people wanting to continue with a legacy boot-loader. I recommend that you use it with locally generated ID's to begin with and test for NVRAM persistence using iMessage debug (See Chapter 7.1).

    If your not aware of the current iMessage issues then please read the news articles below before continuing.

    For the moment this should be considered a public beta release so we need feedback good or bad, please be sure to read all the installation instructions as it consists of both a boot module and a kext.

    Any feedback should be posted to this thread.

    I'm also happy to report that i'm working on a index driven version of this iMessage guide which will dump the current format of everything being in one big post and will favour separate articles for each section of the guide with a new navigation method. Hopefully it will be ready in a few weeks.

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    Apple now reacting to systems using cloned ID's ?

    It would seem that Apple have implemented yet another update to the iMessage validation protocols that seems to effect systems using real (cloned) MLB & ROM values. This new issue started sometime between the 28th and 29th of December 2014 depending upon location.

    I'm not entirely sure what is causing the new issue ..... it's possible that Apple are now black-listing devices that are using cloned ID's or Apple may have implemented a new cross check to the System Type and/or anther system identifier such as SmUUID ... something i've been speculating since Apple introduced tighter SmUUID (or Hardware UUID) validation last year.

    Symptoms of this latest issue seem to be no messages being sent or received from OSX devices despite being able to log in and out of iMessage without issues, mobile devices such as iPhone and iPad are unaffected.

    I think this issue is only effecting OSX systems that are using the same MLB & ROM values and are logged in to iMessage at the same time, this is my best guess as to what may be going on until proven otherwise.

    One can only assume at this stage that Apple have responded to the recent increase in people using cloned MLB & ROM values since the 17th of November MLB validation changes .... I guess the desire to get iMessage working no matter the cost by some people has forced Apples hand. It's not effecting everybody at the moment, but like all recent changes to iMessage validation it may take a few days or even weeks for the change to effect everyone it is targeted at.

    I'll try and dig a little deeper over the next few days but until then ..... to those of you using cloned values, if they are from a Mac your own, you should seriously think about this recent escalation, if you can live without iMessage then i would strongly suggest that you switch to using locally generated and unique MLB & ROM values ASAP (see Chapter 7.1) whist this of course will stop iMessage working it should hopefully stop your ID's being black-listed or flagged by Apple.

    This latest issue is also effecting iMessage on some real Mac's who's ID's have been used on hackingtosh systems so it may well be a MLB/ROM black-list, early reports from users who have contacted Apple about the issue indicate that restoring iMessage functionality on Apple hardware can be hit and miss ...

    More info will be posted once the issue is better understood .....

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    Status of latest iMessage Issue

    The latest iMessage issue detailed in the news below (27/11/2014) still remains. As I speculated when the problem first started, the issue has been confirmed by the rest of the community and is basically caused by improvements to Apples verification process of the MLB value during iMessage authentication, it's also possible that the ROM value is also now subject to enhanced verification although this is still unconfirmed.

    Update 23rd Dec 2014

    Some of you may come across a number of so called 'MLB generators', at the moment these are all work in progress and none of them currently provide a complete solution which is why i'm not posting them here just yet. However they do offer a framework to add to as each element of the MLB is deciphered and fine tuned. I'm in contact with some of the primary developers and between us and and community I hope that a working utility will be released soon.

    In the meantime I would appreciate that no one posts any of these utilities as links or attachments, at this stage there is no point and i don't want to get peoples hopes up just yet and flood this thread with posts about a utility that is not quite ready. It is better that the focus stays where it currently is rather than spreading unfinished code around the internet.

    I hope you all understand my reasoning for this and any post's relating to these early releases may be moderated, once ready and confirmed working the guide will be updated ...please be patent....the solution is coming soon.

    Confirmed improvements to iMessage Authentication Process

    MLB & ROM must be white-listed

    Having done extensive testing with various combinations of MLB & ROM values (real and generated) it is apparent that both the MLB & ROM values must now be white-listed on Apples servers, real Mac's have their ID's added to the Apple database during the manufacturing process.

    It's still unclear if the ROM value must conform to an Apple standard, although it is apparent that it must now be white listed.

    From this point onwards it will not be possible to use iMessage when using user generated MLB & ROM values without calling Apple first to activate/white list your ID's. But please do not Contact Apple unless you are 100% sure your MLB is correctly formatted (which can only be currently done with a fair bit of manual research at the moment), using the old method of taking the OSX S/N and adding random alpha/numeric digits as detailed in Chapter 7.1 will no longer work.

    17 Digit MLB's

    Systems using a legacy user-generated, 17 digit, non-Apple MLB will not work at all, if you do call Apple, it may activate for a short period (up-to a few hours) but ultimately the MLB will fail the improved verification checks and be deactivated resulting in the call Apple dialogue again. Currently there is no automatic method for generating a valid 17 digit MLB which will pass Apple verification, however this is the focus of much attention by myself and others and it is hopeful that the syntax/make-up of 17 digit MLB's will be fully understood soon.

    13 Digit MLB's

    13 Digit MLB's must still conform to some basic back-end verification, however since they lack the more complex parts of the 17 digit MLB format it is possible to user-generate a valid 13 digit MLB that will pass the looser back-end Apple verification (once white-listed), but simply using your OSX S/N + extra random digits like in the past will not work. You can use some elements of the OSX S/N but it should ideally contain a manufacturing date and batch code that is earlier than the date code in the OSX S/N, additionally it must also contain valid Apple ''EEE' - this is yet another Apple part/type reference and some examples can be obtained by researching replacement system boards, some sites list the 'EEE' code in the product description.

    Like 17 digit MLB's there is currently no easy automatic method to do this so it requires a fair bit of effort by the end user, but it does work. I may write a method to assist in this approach but there are already a few other forums that detail the MLB in more detail so for the time-being if you want to try this approach then this is a good place to start.

    Currently there is no back-end verification required for iMessage to work between the MLB/ROM syntax and the System Type and/or S/N.

    However .... If everyone starts using a 13 digit MLB against a more recent System def then it would only be a matter of days before Apple did something about it .... we need to satisfy the Apple verification process in a more complete way thus ensuring longevity rather than short term stop gaps.

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    New version of FileNVRAM released

    While I was on vacation I got an email from meklort and the developers of FileNVRAM informing me that they have implemented my suggestion of supporting a user defined location for the nvram.uuid.plst in a new version of FileNVRAM (see the Additional notes for RAID users in the guide for more info on the issue) - this feature is going to really help those of us who have RAID systems or complex multi-disk installs.

    The new version now also works with OSX Yosemite but you must use the latest build of Chameleon as your boot-loader, hopefully TonyMac/MacMan will release a new version of Chimera soon that will work with it.

    The main changes to FileNVRAM Version 1.1.4 are:-

    • Add ability to read NVRAM file from disk if not passed in by bootloader.
    • Add ability to configure kext using the nvram command
    • Add ability to save nvram configuration to nvrma file.
    • Prepare for public release, source code cleanup.
    • Update macros for passing information between module and kext.
    • Add method to enable logging using an nvram variable.

    When i get chance i'll update the guide with the new features for RAID users, in the meantime , any one who want to try it out can download the new release of FileNVRAM direct from the xZenue server here:

    FileNVRAM Version 1.1.4 (Build 77)

    Note: This will not solve the current iMessage issue for anyone but will allow Chameleon users to boot OSX Yosemite with working NVRAM support and it solve's a big headache for RAID users. It should allow the use of iMessage once a fix is found for the issue.

    As always a big thanks to xzenue, meklort and all the other guys involved with FileNVRAM

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    New iMessage Activation/Authentication Issue

    As of mid November 2014 it would appear that Apple have once again updated their iMessage client authentication and verification processes on their backend servers. If iMessage is still working for you DO NOT LOG-OUT or perform any operation that will cause a logout such as a OS update .... etc.

    Once you do logout the existing iMessage security token will no longer be valid and will not be replaced with a a new token due to failure of ID verification on logging back in. As in the past, i'm sure those of us who still have working iMessage will get kicked out/logged-off .... including myself due to periodic iMessage disconnect messages which get pushed out every once in a while.

    Symptoms:

    The main symptom is a return of the following iMessage alert box :-

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Observations:

    • The issue effect's all existing installs of OSX Mavericks and Yosemite using any Boot-loader.
    • The issue only effects iMessage and Facetime, all other iCloud services seem unaffected.
    • Once effected you will no longer be able to re-activate iMessage by calling Apple Support with the displayed customer code despite it being apparently valid and accepted by Apple Support should you decide to try.
    • If you have not changed any OSX ID's such as S/N, MLB, ROM ... etc then the customer code should be the same as the last time you called Apple to activate iMessage.
    • Generating a complete set of new OSX ID's will not resolve the issue despite a new customer code being generated, it does not matter if is this on existing or completely new hardware.
    • Creating a new AppleID and associating the hackingtosh with either the existing or new ID's does not resolve the issue.
    • If you do call Apple support and give them the displayed customer code iMessage will continue to display the same alert message and the same customer code no matter how many times you call Apple.
    • Restoring a backup or booting from a clone of the system when iMessage was working will not resolve the issue due to the security token at Apples end being flagged as expired.
    • It would seem that Apple Customer Support is not aware of the enhanced verification process as they will continue to try and help you resolve the issue but it seems that no matter what they do the issue remains.
    • There are a few small changes to the Apple self-solve web-site and notable changes to the Apple support web-site - when logging a support issue, the path to the correct support department has changed and you now have to select a pre-registered Apple device to log the ticket against were as in the past you were able to enter any S/N of any device.
    • The symptom you see localy relates to the iMessage security token, normally when you login to iMessage your id's are verified by the server and a new security token is generated and passed back to the client were it is stored locally, after which it is used in conjunction with the server side token each time you use iMessage for verification and message packet encryption. If you logout then the token is physically deleted locally and made invalid at the server side. You will not be able to use iMessage again until you have a new and valid security token. When you try to log back in, the server side will try to generate a new security token but the id's now fail the new validation checks thus triggering the contact Apple alert message and failure to receive a new token.
    • The locally stored iMessage security token will automatically expire after 5 to 6 weeks, after which MLB & ROM are re-verified and a new token sent to the client. Obviously now that the ID verification process has been enhanced this no longer happens.
    • Current Diagnosis: I'm now 100% sure its the MLB that is failing verification ultimately resulting in the loss of a new iMessage security token being generated and sent to the client. There is a confirmed patten to the MLB which needs to be understood. In the past we were able to use our OSX S/N + additional/random values to make the MLB value the correct length for the system type being used (either 13 or 17 digits).
    • Current Investigation: I am researching how the component values of the MLB are made up, it is a similar format (but different) to the way the OSX S/N is derived.

    As in the past when iMessage stops working some users go back to using ID's form real mac's to get iMessage working again ... i've continually advised through-out the life of this guide and thread not to do this .... all your going to do is make Apple more vigilant to secure iMessage even further and you may run the risk of black-listing the source Mac's ID's if you use them too many times on non-Apple Hardware.

    It's been known for a longtime that using the MLB & ROM value from a real Mac will allow iMessage to work without having to call Apple but we have to try and find a way that can satisfy Apples validation and security without resorting to using cloned/leached values if at all possible - See Chapter 7.2

    I will continue to update this news item with further info on the issue as and when new information is found. If a solution is found i'll post a new news item along with any new steps required.

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    OSX Yosemite 10.10.1 - Combo Update

    If you are running Yosemite 10.10.0 in conjunction with Clover boot-loader and have configured your system as per the guide then I can happily confirm that iMessage should continue to function perfectly after applying the latest Yosemite OSX 10.10.1 Combo update:-

    My recommended Update Method is:-

    • Download the standalone combo update installer using the above link
    • Ensure you have a good/current backup
    • Run Disk-Utility and repair file persimmons on your OSX startup drive
    • Disconnect from internet
    • Ensure you have an-up-to date copy of iMessage Debug output & your SmUUID
    • Run the Combo Installer, OSX will update and reboot.
    • If you have dynamic Clover patches for Audio, Trim, BT4, WiFi .. etc then the system should restart and work as before.
    • Those not using dynamic Clover patching will have to re-install Audio, Trim enabler .. etc from multibeast and re-apply any binary or info.plist patches for BT4, Wifi ..etc
    • After Restart run iMessage Debug and check output against your previous values .... ensure Hardware(Platform)UUID, S/N, MLB & ROM are all the same, if Hardware UUID is the same as before then SmUUID will be the same so no need to check.

    Using the above method i have successfully updated three different systems to OSX 10.10.1 - two desktop's and one Laptop (for safety i installed nullcpumanagment.kext before updating the laptop and removed it once finished)

    It's probably not necessary to have to disconnect from the internet and do the ID check, it's your choice, you just never know whats going to happen ... so best to be safe at least for the first time you do a Combo-Update running via clover boot-loader....

    If all your ID's are ok, re-connect to your network, you may have to re-enter your iCloud password again.
    You should now be back up and running .....

    Once everything is working and to ensure everything continues trouble free I recommend running anther Disk Permissions Repair via DiskUtil.

    I've seen no problems so far...

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    OSX Yosemite 10.10.0

    With the public release of OS X 10.10 comes a new iMessage and as expected a few new iMessage issues.

    The Good News

    If you followed my advice from the last six months and you've already made the transition to using Clover as your boot-loader then the good news is you don't have to do anything in order to get iMessage working. If your not already using r2953 then i would advise that you update Clover before installing OS X 10.10.

    I made a Unibeast 5 USB installer for OSX 10.10 and simply installed OS X 10.10 over my existing Mavericks install (just like a real mac) after the install finished I re-booted again with the Unibeast USB still in place and loaded the new OS. Once loaded I used the latest version of Multibeast to update all critical kext's such as FakeSMC, Audio, Trim, Ethernet ... etc, after a little bit of fine tuning i removed the Unibeast USB and rebooted back into OS X 10.10 via Clover. Finally I ran iMessage Debug to ensure that all my ID's were the same as before the update and iMessage is working great, love the updated look, notifications ... etc

    Please ensure that you use the new kernel boot flag 'kext-dev-mode=1' otherwise some 3rd party kexts might not load, in Clover Configurator simply tick the option in the kernel boot options.

    Click image for larger version. 

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    The BAD News


    If you not using Clover as your boot-loader then you will not be able to use iMessage, it as simple as that at the moment. I will not be adding a method for installing Clover to this guide as its off topic and there are many ways it can be done. There are loads of guides and resources out there, find one that works for your level of knowledge and understanding.

    If you've not tried Clover yet and you don't understand how EFI booting differs from legacy BIOS booting then it might be worth reading up on that first before installing Clover, try starting with the Technical Background document .... it's part of the official Clover wiki which is an excellent resource when working with Clover, however if you are a beginner to DSDT patching and low level hackingtosh methods then you may find some of the documentation a bit vague in which case you should research each option more closely, simply searching with any good search engine should result in something that will help you.

    Once you have Clover working use the Clover tips in each section of this guide to resolve iMessage issues such as Sid bug and non persistent ROM & MLB values ... etc, if you had already fixed all of the issues using the older methods you should re-use/keep all of your existing ID's with Clover which should reduce any device changes being detected by Apple.​

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    New Version of iMessage Debug Released

    ElNono has released an updated version to his extremely useful iMessage Debug Tool. Version 2.0 has a new cleaner output and now also displays your SystemId (SmUUID) so no need now to check the IORegistry for SystemId ... it also has the ability to dump the output directly to a text file.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    No reason not to use it so grab it now .. Download it via the attachments at the end of #1 of the Guide.

    Big thanks to ElNono as always ....

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    #3

    How to Fix iMessage (JAYMONKEY NEW WORKING DRAFT)



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    Chapter: 1
    Overview & How use this Guide
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    iMessage - Apple's cross-device, instant messaging system built into OS X (and IOS) is quite possibly the most finicky software element to get working correctly when OS X is running on non-Apple hardware.
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    Symptoms of iMessage problems usually show as a sign in or activation error

    There are many different factors that can effect iMessage and stop it from working, the majority of these can be fixed by ensuring your OS X System (& Apple ID) are set up and configured correctly. The object of this guide is to take you through diagnosing which of the many possible issues are stopping iMessage from working on your system and explain what you need to do to fix it.

    It is best to think of this guide as a 'Tool Box' rather than a step by step guide, although i have tried to put the guide into a logical order, solving iMessage can be a real nightmare but armed with the knowledge contained in this guide you should be able to resolve most iMessage issues, I apologise for the length of the guide, however as you will find .... there is a lot to cover.

    I would suggest that you read through the entire guide first and digest each of the chapters before making any changes to your system. I have tried to explain the reasons behind each issue and the appropriate solution. I believe that its important to learn and understand how things work, anybody can upload a file and tell you what to do with it but nobody learns from that, some steps of the guide are critical, others are optional - this is made clear at each step of the guide.

    Each Chapter or sub-step of the guide will fall in to one of the following categories identified by the icon next to the title of that Chapter or section:-


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    Be aware of this information

    Additionally you will notice some 'quick' navigation icons through-out the guide :-

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    Before you start I recommend that you make sure you've got an up-to-date TM or CCC backup, there is nothing in this guide that should cause any problems, all the steps are relatively straight forward and easy to apply, just take your time and be sure to follow the instructions carefully ... read all the notes.

    I am not responsible for any damage or loss of data you may incur by using the information in this guide.

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    Additional information & Tips

    Although rare, some issues such as the ROM value always returning zero's have been resolved by a number of users by updating their BIOS. Whilst updating the BIOS has never resolved any iMessage issues for myself it does seem to have helped a few people on this thread/forum so it's worth considering if your continuously having problems and the guide does not seem to be working for you.

    Warning: You should only update the BIOS if your sure about what your doing .... if you are using a DSDT with your boot-loader then updating the BIOS may break your DSDT's system compatibility. Ideally after updating the BIOS you should extract a new native DSDT and re-patch.

    Sometimes it is necessary to try some of the procedures in the guide more than once, iMessage is very very fussy, so much so that sometimes the order of the things you do can effect the out-come, the order given is the guide is a logical one for a system that has just had OS X installed with no prior knowledge of iMessage fixes.

    If you continue to have issues, try searching through the posts in this thread - its possible that someone has already found a solution to your issue, one suggestion that keeps coming up is to use a genuine Mac to re-initialise the effected AppleID, although I can not personally confirm this suggestion, it does seem to have helped others but like so many tips out there it could also be coincidence as this also works when using another Hackingtosh to re-initialise an AppleID.

    Finally I'll end this chapter by reminding you that Apple are constantly evolving and updating their on-line eco and message systems with new features and security measures, as such do not be surprised if we see new and even stranger issues with iMessage in the future. If you think you've encountered a new iMessage issue please post to this thread with as much info as you can, including screen shots of any alerts and/or console log snippets and i'll try to help.

    Thanks for reading & Good Luck.
    Cheers
    Jay

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    #4

    iMessage Guide: Chapter 2



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    iMessage Pre-requsites
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    RAID & Fusion drive systems

    If your using Chameleon or Chimera as your boot loader and boot OSX from a Apple software RAID (or Fusion drive) then there is an added complication (this does not effect users of Clover so you can skip down to the next section).

    To negate this complication you must clone your RAID volume to a standalone HDD using Carbon Copy Cloner or similar utility, install Chimera and modify the chameleon plist in /Extra so that you can boot OSX from this non RAID clone (be sure to remove Kernel Cache=Yes and the RAID uuid from the boot flags). Once booted from the clone HDD, apply the necessary steps from the guide to get iMessage working.

    When your happy that everything is working ok, take a deep breath and delete your existing RAID set, it's also worth erasing the two RAID member drives just so you know that everything is fresh and makes for a good opportunity to update your boot loader, then re-create your RAID so a new RAID uuid is generated,

    Now clone the standalone HDD back to the new RAID set, make the RAID bootable by installing the boot loader via the command line method to each of the RAID helper partitions and copy the entire /Extra folder to the two RAID helper partitions, be sure to edit the chameleon plist so that it boots using the new RAID uuid and Kernel Cache=Yes.

    Its sounds a pain and it is, it's time consuming and carries a certain amount of risk but all OSX software RAID users should be familiar with this method as its how we get our RAID's woking in the first place, so if you think of it along those lines and it wont seem quite so daunting, just be sure to cover yourself with multiple backups if possible.

    Warning: If you don't understand the above then please stop now, do some research and make yourself familiar with the way a OSX RAID is created and made bootable on a Hackingtosh system, you can use this guide as a starting point. Please be sure to read the additional RAID notes towards the end of the guide.

    August 2014: Anyone running a Raid or Fusion drive should seriously think about changing to Clover as a boot loader as it resolves all of the above problems. On my GA-Z77X-UD5H i had an old 40Gig SATA-II drive kicking around. I installed clover on to that and set it as the UEFI Boot drive. I can now start OSX up from the Raid without having to use helper partitions .. etc. I've added many tips to the guide to cover each issue for Clover Users.

    As already explained, if you boot OS X from a software RAID then it can causes a problem for FileNVRAM because the boot loader has to have access to the /Extra folder outside of OSX (a software raid volume can only be read/written once the kernel is up and running) the boot-loader and /Extra folder reside on the RAID helper partition(s) but these are unmounted once OS X has finished booting, thus FileNVRAM is unable to access the /Extra folder which means that the contents of nvram.uuid.plist can not be updated.

    You can use the RAID clone method detailed above to get iMessage working initially but if you ever get logged out of iMessage for any reason then you will need to repeat the clone procedure so that the NVRAM cache, nvram.uuid.plist and the iMessage plists can get updated with new keys and data.

    Once you have re-cloned the volume back to your raid you need to copy the new nvram.uuid.plist to the /Extra folder on both the raid helper partitions (be sure to delete the old ones first), it is not necessary to blow away the raid on a re-clone but copying the nvram plist on its own will not work, you have to clone the whole drive back to the raid as-well.

    I'm sure that there must be a better way like updating some OSX configuration files with keys or UUID's, but as yet i have not found one, if anybody else finds a better solution to resolve the raid issue with FileNVRAM please post..

    Update-1: I have reported this issue to the developers of FileNVRAM and suggested a possible work around, once we have a better solution for Raid users I will update the guide. Please see this Link for the problem & enhancement request.

    Update-2: I'm pleased to report that the developers of FileNVRAM have included the above request in the latest version of FileNVRAM (v1.1.4) - See News Dated: 8th Dec 2014 in the News Archive.

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    iMessage Tips
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    Clover Migration Preparation

    If you are migrating from a legacy boot-loader to Clover, please use all your existing ID's from your Mavericks install (assuming iMessage was working OK)

    This includes all of the following :-

    • SMUUID (SystemId)
    • OSX S/N
    • MLB
    • ROM

    You can get these from your old build using iMessage Debug and IOJones

    Failure to do this will result in a new device being logged with Apple and you will not be able to access iMessage, please make sure that you put the SystemID UUID in the SMUUID field on the SMBIOS page, do not put it in the Custom UUID field on the System Parameters page but do ensue that 'Inject System ID' is checked.

    Before trying iMessage run iMessage Debug and ensure that all your ID's match your previous Mavericks build including the Hardware (platform) UUID, if all ok try iMessage and it should work. If ANY ID's are not the same or are changing on each boot then resolve the issues before trying iMessage or Contacting Apple to Unlock AppleID/Device.

    Do not confuse the SmUUID (systemId) with the Hardware (Platform) UUID on your old build, you should only need to add the SmUUID to Clover's config.plist, then OSX should automatically generate the same Hardware UUID as before.

    I've been using Clover Version r2953 and have had no issues updating to Yosemite on five machines so far and iMessage is working on them all using each machines existing ID's.

    As previously suggested if your new to Clover I recommend that you install Clover first on your existing Mavericks build and ensure that iMessage is working before installing OSX 10.10.

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    Contact Apple with Customer Code Alert

    If you get a iMessage alert asking you to contact Apple with a customer code there is nothing you can do locally to resolve the issue, the customer code must be applied to your AppleID to unlock iMessage on your device, this can only be done by Apple (this will not effect any mobile devices ability to send/receive messages such as iPhone, iPad .. etc)

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    Recently many more users are seeing this alert, I believe that Apple have made further changes to security checks on their systems in early August 2014. The above message is explained in further detail in Part-2, Step-8 of this guide.

    If this is the first time you have got this message then I suggest that you check ALL your ID's to ensure they are the correct syntax and are persistent on each boot. Many installs allow the ROM & MLB values to change on each boot or have a miss-matched System Type and/or S/N. If this happens then you will continue you get this message again after a few weeks.

    This guide covers all of the necessary checks and provides the solutions, I recommend that you read the entire guide at least once as you will learn a lot about debugging iMessage, as a very minimum if you are getting the above alert then I suggest the following :-

    • Read Part 2 of the guide up-to Step 7, check if you have the SId bug, if so fix it
    • Check your S/N is correct for the System Type you are using - see Part-1, step 3
    • Check for persistent MLB & ROM values, see Part-1, Step 5d
    • If you changed anything in steps 3,5 or 7 then perform all of step 4 and 5e

    Once your ready to contact Apple use the method described in Part-2 Step 8 of the guide which should get you through to correct support department without them asking you too many questions.

    Only contact Apple if you get the above message with a Customer Code.

    Important Note: Due to the changes made by Apple in November 2014 (see news above) I do not recommend contacting Apple to resolve iMessage activation issue until further notice.

    If you are getting the more generic login or authentication alerts then use the guide to resolve your issues, at some point you may start getting the above alert in which case iMessage is now working on your OSX system but you must contact Apple to remove the device/AppleID lockout and or white list your MLB & ROM values.

    Before jumping to the conclusion that your iMessage problem is local to your OSX machine its always worth checking to see if there is a more general service outage. you can check the official status of Apple's backend systems here :-

    http://www.apple.com/support/systemstatus/

    you can also track iMessage issues in your country by using Down Detector :-

    For USA use this link:-
    http://downdetector.com/status/imessage

    For UK use this link:
    http://downdetector.co.uk/status/imessage

    (for other countries use either of the two links and click on the appropriate country flag on the right)

    If you find this guide helpful please consider clicking on the 'Recommended' button at the top of this page, doing so will help to keep the link to the guide on the home page making it much easer for others to find.

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    Chapter: 2.3
    iMessage Error Codes
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    If you are receiving a generic type of error message such as 'Could not sign in to iMessage' :-

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    Then you may be able to gain a better understanding of what is wrong by checking your OS X system log for iMessage related errors, simply use the 'Console' app and use the search/filter facility.

    Check the filtered results ... there are far too many different messages to list individually but most will contain an error code .... the following list details what each error code means and the end result of it (usually Disabling Service) ... this information may help you in debugging your iMessage issue and give an indication of which area you need to address .

    Error No.
    Type
    Description
    Result
    0 [Warning] Failed unknown error Disabling service
    1 [Warning] Failed no error Disabling service
    2 [Warning] Failed registration cancelled Disabling service
    3 [Warning] Failed not supported Disabling service
    4 [Warning] Failed denied by user Disabling service
    5 [Warning] Failed delivered too many sms Disabling service
    6 [Warning] Failed too many sms delivery failures Disabling service
    7 [Warning] Failed garbage signature Disabling service
    8 [Warning] Failed garbage phone number Disabling service
    9 [Warning] Failed server not found Disabling service
    10 [Warning] Failed server not available Disabling service
    11 [Warning] Failed server error Disabling service
    12 [Warning] Failed new signature required Disabling service
    13 [Warning] Failed bad signature Disabling service
    14 [Warning] Failed bad push token Disabling service
    15 [Warning] Failed no device id Disabling service
    16 [Warning] Failed no push token Disabling service
    17 [Warning] Failed empty result code Disabling service
    18 [Warning] Failed invalid login Disabling service
    19 [Warning] Failed invalid password Disabling service
    20 [Warning] Failed login failed Disabling service
    21 [Warning] Failed account update needed Disabling service
    22 [Warning] Failed new password needed Disabling service
    23 [Warning] Failed permanently blocked Disabling service
    24 [Warning] Failed temporarily blocked Disabling service
    25 [Warning] Failed unconfirmed alias Disabling service
    26 [Warning] Failed alias legacy or not active Disabling service
    27 [Warning] Failed alias not available Disabling service
    28 [Warning] Failed alias in use Disabling service
    29 [Warning] Failed not authorised Disabling service
    30 [Warning] Failed bad invitation context Disabling service
    31 [Warning] Failed abs in the error (MLB/ROM) Disabling service
    32 [Warning] Failed rate limit error Disabling service
    33 [Warning] Failed server registration unsupported Disabling service
    34 [Warning] Failed no alias set Disabling service

    Many thanks to Pike R. Alpha for providing the above list of Error codes and descriptions.

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    #5

    How to Fix iMessage - Chapter 3



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    Chapter: 3.1
    Apple ID Verification
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    There are four different types of AppleID account:-

    • Basic
    • Basic Verified
    • Pro (Verified)
    • Developer (Verified)

    It doesn't matter what type of account you have or if your AppleID is registered as @me.com, @mac.com, @icloud.com or a non-Apple email address, if your going to use it with iMessage it must be verified and the easiest way of making your AppleID verified is to register a credit card against it.

    You can check the 'Verified' status of your AppleID by logging into Apple's on-line Account manager :-

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    By registering a credit card against your Apple ID, Apple's servers and systems know that your AppleID has a verified name and address, the main reason behind this is to stop people from creating false AppleID's and using them to send spam.

    The most secure way to register a credit card against your AppleID is through iTunes or the App Store, do not use a web address in a browser, there have been several reports of fake AppleID phishing sites, most of these scams work via fake emails that contain a rouge link to a fake AppleID log-in page, the email usually asks you to confirm or update your AppleID, don't be fooled even if the address looks like it might reside on legit server.

    Note: Some users have reported success at using their PayPal Account as a means of AppleID Verification and payment. I personally can not confirm this but there are positive posts on this thread that it works, if you do try this and it works for you then please post some feedback.

    For veteran OSX users its possible that you have an old AppleID (@mac.com ..etc) which you haven't used for a while, but if it has a credit card registered against it that is still current then you could try using it to test iMessage.

    If your AppleID already has a Verified status but you are still having trouble with iMessage login or authentication, you could try changing your AppleID password, this is one of the oldest tricks in the book for resolving iMessage login issues. It has also been reported that sometimes updating your account details (address ..etc) or purchasing something from the AppStore or iTunes (even a free item) can also revive iMessage functionality.

    Do not be tempted to remove your credit card info once your account is verified, iMessage will stop working at some point if you do.

    You should also be aware that once the credit card expires on your AppleID, you are given a grace period which seems to be around 30 days to register a new one. If you do not register a new, valid credit card within the grace period, iMessage will stop working.

    Chapter 3.1 Summary:

    Your Apple ID must have a Verified status for iMessage and Face-Time to work

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    Chapter: 3.2
    Network Interfaces (BSD Names)
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    Open 'System Information' [About this MAC -> More Info -> System Report] and click on 'Ethernet Cards' , you should see a list of installed NIC's on your system, for each NIC you will see a list of parameters such as Type, Bus, VendorID, DeviceID ... etc

    Look at the parameter called 'BSD name' for each of your network interfaces, they should be called 'en0', 'en1' ... etc
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    BSD names should start with 'en0' and be numbered sequentially for the number of NIC's in your system, any additional NIC's such as USB or WiFi devices should have BCD names that follow the on-board or PCI devices. The BSD names should start at en0 and be numbered sequentially with no gaps.

    Example:

    I have a Gigabyte GA-Z77-UD5H motherboard's which has two built-in LAN ports (Intel and Atherios). In this example I could access the internet and email on either port but could not use any Apple on-line service such as iMessage, iCloud, App Store and iTunes (on either port).

    On investigating my BSD names I found that the Intel port was named 'en2' and the Atherios port was 'en1', there was no 'en0' .... how this occurred during OSX install i'm not sure ? but I've seen this happen more than once on different systems.

    If you find that you have no 'en0' or have 'gaps' in the BSD Names number sequence or things just don't seem correct with your network hardware/software then the first thing you could try is re-setting all of OSX's Network Settings ...

    Re-setting OSX's Network configuration.

    Using Finder navigate to :-

    Code:
    /Library/Preferences/SystemConfiguration/
    Delete the following two files :-

    NetworkInterfaces.plist
    preferences.plist

    Empty the trash and reboot.

    OSX should re-discover all your Network Interfaces and rebuild the network hardware and software settings, hopefully with the correct BSD names. If the BSD names are still not correct and you have add-on NIC's such as PCI or USB then try removing all of them and delete the two files again, reboot and let OSX assign the 'built-in' NIC's first, then re-install your add-on NIC's one by one.

    This method has a 60% chance of working .... if not then a re-install usually does the job.

    You'll know if this particular issue is resolved once you can use some iCloud service such as the App Store and Software updates, but iMessage may still not work....

    It's always worth checking your BSD names first-thing after a OSX install, or after you've added or removed any NIC's. As stated above, if your system has 'built-in' ethernet port(s) then the BSD names should start with those first and then cover any additional 'add-on' NIC's such as WiFI or USB, make sure they start at en0 and are numbered sequentially with no gaps.

    If all your Network Interface's have good BSD names then it time to check if they are flagged as 'Built-In'.
    For this task I recommend using DPCIManager 1.5, which you can download from here:-

    http://sourceforge.net/projects/dpcimanager/files/

    Once installed run it and make sure your on the 'Status' tab, the top part of the Status screen will identify all your network interfaces and display their BCD names, as explained above, the BCD names should start at 'en0', additionally the 'Builtin' check box next to each interface must be checked for iMessage to work on each of the detected network interfaces.

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    If the 'built-in' check box is not checked you should make sure you have the following key and string in your boot.chameleon.org.plist (if using Chimera or Chameleon):-
    Code:
    <key>EthernetBuiltIn</key>
        <string>Yes</string>
    if you do have this key and string in your plist but the 'Built-in' check box is not ticked then click on the 'eye' icon for the appropriate interface (at the right hand side of each entry), you will be given an EFI string that you can add to your boot.chameleon.org.plist in /Extra, this string is required for correct iMessage operation, for most users the Boot-Loader will identify the correct EFI string and automatically inject it, however in some rare instances this does not work in which case you should manually inject the NIC(s) EFI string(s) identified by DPCIManager.
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    Clover users can add the EFI String to their config.plist or use Clover Configurator and add the EFI string on the devices page.

    If it does not work straight away, you may have to try one or two of the other steps such as deleting all previous iMessage setup data (See Chapter 3.3 below), reset password, delete nvram.uuid.plist in /extra ... etc.

    All of my hackingtosh builds are using 'en0' and 'en1' for the on-board ethernet NIC's, if you have both ethernet and WiFi like my trusty Sony Vaio-SE2 laptop hackingtosh, the LAN port should be assigned to 'en0' and the WiFi should be 'en1' (see above DPCIManager 'Status' screen grab).

    I personally recommend that you get iMessage working on a wired interface before moving to WiFi, if your working on a new build its best to get everything else working via wired network then add/enable the WiFi interface. If you jump straight to the WiFi interface then you may experience odd BCD NIC naming.

    There is a bit more information on the issue with BSD names and a possible way to avoid the problem in the future here.

    Chapter 3.2 Summary:

    • NIC BSD names should be 'en0', 'en1' ... etc
    • Numbered sequentially with no gaps.

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    Reset iMessage Configuration files
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    If you are starting with a clean OSX install then there is no need for you to perform any of the procedures in this chapter .... however if you have been trying to get iMessage to work for sometime and have been using different System ID's and/or Apple_ID's then the chances are that the iMessage configuration and cache files could contain invalid or non-useful data.

    By deleting these files we can force iMessage to reset-itself and re-build the configuration files & plists and force iMessage to re-authenticate it-self with Apples iMessage servers. I recommend performing this procedure after making any changes to OS X's System ID's such as the S/N, SmUUD (System_Id) and System Type.

    In order to delete the files you will need the ‘Show all Files’ utility or similar for displaying hidden files and folders ... you can download 'Show all Files' form the community section of this site.

    Enable ‘Show all Files’, start-up Finder and navigate to:-
    Code:
    /StartupDrive/Users/~Username/Library/Caches
    Delete all files and folders beginning with the following prefixes:-

    • com.apple.iCloudHelper
    • com.apple.Messages
    • com.apple.imfoundation.IMRemoteURLConnectionAgent

    Now navigate to:-
    Code:
    /StartupDrive/Users/~Username/Library/Preferences
    Delete all files and folders beginning with the following prefixes:-

    • com.apple.iChat.
    • com.apple.icloud.
    • com.apple.imagent.
    • com.apple.imessage.
    • com.apple.imservice.
    • com.apple.ids.service.com.apple.madrid.plist.
    • com.apple.imessage.bag.plist.

    Now delete the folder:-
    Code:
    /StartupDrive/Users/~Username/Library/Messages
    Note: The Above folder is your local message store, if you want to keep your existing messages make a backup of this folder before removing it, most of your recent message conversations should be recovered and re-synced from your Apple ID iCloud account once iMessage is working correctly.

    After performing the above deletions ensure you empty the trash before rebooting. You may find that it is impossible to delete all of the cached files via the OS X GUI due to services automatically restarting .... if you really want to persist and remove all of the files you can boot into OS X single use mode (-x) and delete the files using terminal commands.

    Performing the above procedures either individual or all together has been confirmed to help in resolving multiple iMessage issues by myself and several other users on this thread, removal of these plists should not cause any additional side effects .... however as with all things Hackingtosh it's always worth ensuring you have a up-to-date backup before you start deleting anything.

    Resetting the Security Service settings :-

    After a 'glitch' in Apples backend servers that occurred sometime around the 8th or 9th of August 2014 many users found that they were unable to reactivate iMessage despite following the above and the other tips in this guide, the following fix the issue for myself :-

    With 'Show all Files' enabled navigate to:-
    Code:
    /StartupDrive/Users/~Username/Library/Preferences
    Delete all files beginning with the following prefixes:-

    • com.apple.identityserviced
    • com.apple.ids.service
    • com.apple.security.

    This should always be done in conjunction with all of the above deletions ....

    Some users have found that they were unable to delete the some of the id and security plists because they are being accessed by the associated serives. If you find this is the case, open Activity Monitor and try killing the following services :-

    • identityserviced
    • imagent
    • securityd
    • securityd_serviceand

    Try deleting the files again (you may have to try the above a few times before it works) if all else fails you can boot OS X in single use mode and delete the files using terminal commands.

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    #6

    How to fix iMessage - Chapter 4



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    Chapter: 4.1
    OS X Serial Number (S/N)
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    It is important that you have a unique OSX Serial Number (S/N). Under no circumstances should you use someone else's OSX S/N it isn't necessary and doing so can cause a miss-match with your System Type and lead to security and authentication issues.

    Important: Try to keep the number of times you change the OSX S/N to an absolute minimum as Apple will detect the change against your devices UUID, if done too many times Apple may block your device's UUID against your AppleID (See Chapter-5 of the guide for more details on this, you can override your SystemId (UUID) by means of the SId Bug fix). While resolving some iMessage issues like BCD names and fixing ID's I recommend going off line that way you avoid Apple's servers detecting any changes which could be flagged as a miss-matches.

    Note: Changing your OSX S/N can cause certain user profile settings being reset such as BT Mouse settings and Launchpad layout ..... additionally some registered applications that use the S/N as part of its licensing system may also be affected and may need to be re-registered.

    Anatomy of OSX S/N

    The OSX S/N on MAC's manufactured after 2010 is normally 12 Digits long and can be broken up thus:

    AA B CC DDD EEEE

    AA = Manufacturing Country/Facility - 2 digit - alpha numeric
    B = Generation Usually 2 - early MAC's such as Mac Pro 3,1 do not have this digit so S/N is 11 digits long
    CC = Year and Week of manufacture as code - 2 digit - alpha-numeric
    DDD = Unique Number - 3 digit - alpha-numeric
    EEE = Suffix = Specific Model & Year/Type - 4 digit - alpha-numeric

    The Prefix (AA) specifies the production facility were the MAC was made, getting this information is proving difficult but here is a list of confirmed country codes known so far ...

    QP : USA
    G8 : USA
    CK : Ireland
    C0 : Taiwan (Quanta Computers)
    YM : China
    W8 : China
    RM : Remanufactured Model

    Most OSX S/N generators such as Chameleon Wizard and Clover's 'Magic Wand' will set the prefix to either 'CK' or 'CO' as these locations manufacture and repair many types os Apple Devices where as some of the other plants only produce 1 or 2 models.

    The Suffix (DDDD) consists of four digits depending on the model type and year it was made - pikeralpha maintains lists that you can use to check your OSX S/N suffix is correct for the model type your trying to emulate. It should be noted that it's not a complete list and only covers Apple hardware made in the last four years.

    OSX S/N Suffix - F000-FZZZ
    OSX S/N Suffix - G000-GZZZ

    Also note that for most Mac's there are multiple entries for each year and model type, these are generally for the different configurations available for each model/year such as CPU/GPU/Memory ...etc follow the link against each suffix to confirm the exact specification. Some OSX features are only available on certain models/year so this may be an important factor in getting all of OSX features working correctly.

    You should try to ensure that your S/N prefix and suffix is correct for the model type your using. I generally only use iMac 13,1 or 14,2 depending Intel Chipset and CPU type. As of late Oct 2014 - I have a theory that its possible that Apple are now checking the manufacturing country code (S/N Prefix) against the model type identifier ....

    Example: MacPro 6,1 with a S/N starting with C0 or CK would be invalid as the new Mac Pro is only manufactured in Austin TX, USA so could never have a S/N prefix of C0 (Taiwan) or CK (Cork - Ireland) ... this is purely a theory at the moment but could explain what why some users are having trouble especially those using MacPro 6,1... I am investigating this trail of thought further and will update the guide soon.

    I suspect many users are manually editing the SMBIOS.plist or Clover's config.plist and changing the System Type without realising the importance of the prefix or suffix in the S/N thus causing a S/N - System-Type miss-match.

    Make sure your OSX S/N is valid but not registered ...

    I recommend that you check any existing or newly generated OSX S/N using Apple's Self Solve website which can be accessed at the following URL:-

    https://selfsolve.apple.com

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    Simply copy and paste your OSX S/N into the form and click on continue, if your S/N passes the validation checks and is not registered then site will return with the following message:-

    We're sorry, the number you have provided cannot be found in our records. Please verify the number and try again

    This is good and is the only message you really want to see ..... it means your OSX S/N does not match an existing Mac's S/N but it does pass all of Apples S/N validation checks, this is also useful when calling Apple support as the S/N will appear valid but will not show up on their systems .. in-most cases making them think the issue is with their registration database and not your OSX S/N.

    If the site returns with a summary of the device and a page detailing the current warranty status then it means that the S/N is already registered and assigned to anther machine:-

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    This is bad, using someone else's OSX S/N is a very bad idea, if you own the MAC then I guess its not so bad but I still don't recommended it.

    Its very easy for Apple's systems to detect that more than one machine is using the same S/N and/or other critical ID's such as ROM, MLB .. etc at the same time which may cause security authentication issues and you may be locked out using iMessages on all of your other devices or worse your AppleID could be deactivated.

    There have been a number of post's on this thread from users who it would seem have black-listed their own real Mac OSX S/N by cloning it across multiple hackingtosh machines. I can't personally confirm this but i have no reason to doubt those reports .... it would make sense given the heightened security Apple seems to apply to iMessage compared to all of its other online-services.

    Finally, if you get the message :-

    We're sorry, but this serial number is not valid. Please check your information and try again

    Then the S/N is either black-listed or failing the OSX S/N validation checks, do not use it - generate new S/N and try again.

    Chapter 4.1 Summary:

    You must have a unique, non-registered but valid OSX Serial Number


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    Chapter: 4.2
    OS X SMBIOS (System Type)
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    System Type & SMBIOS

    Its important that you match the SMBIOS 'System Type' to the PC hardware you have in your hackingtosh for maximum system stability and performance.

    If your not sure which System Type to use, download and install MAC Tracker ... compare the hardware of the various Apple Model types with the CPU and Motherboard chipset generation you are using, don't worry too much about the video type as you can override this using Boot-Loader options. Whats important is to try and match the CPU and Chipset as close as possible. OS X has internal optimisations for Ivy & Haswell CPU based systems will only be activated if using the correct System Type .

    Although many OS X Hardware build guides recommend using Mac Pro 3,1 because its considered 'safe' it can cause issues with iMessage because it has a 11 digit S/N - which in-turn can effect the MLB value.

    OS X uses the System Type ID along with the PID's & VID's of your hardware in order to optimise some of the more advanced Apple only kernel features. EG you have a Haswell Z87 PC Based system but are using a Mac Pro 3,1 system definition which is pre Sandy Bridge Architecture ... Mac Pro 3,1 was discontinued in 2009 making its hardware specification over 5 years old - in PC technology terms this is light years - so in this instance many of OS X's power saving features of the Haswell Architecture will not be activated.

    Updating the SMBIOS & OS X S/N - Chimera or Chameleon method

    Open Chameleon Wizard and click on the 'SMBios' icon then 'Open' and navigate to the /Extra folder in the root of your startup disk and select your SMBIOS.plist.

    Note: RAID users will have to mount the two RAID helper partition(s) to access the /Extra folders - see here.

    Once your SMBIOS is loaded in the editor, selecting a pre-made SMBIOS will automatically fill-in all the details and ensure that the suffix of the S/N is correct for the system type you have selected (see Chapter 4.1 above).

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    Once your happy with the System Type, click a few times on the two <Random> buttons to generate a new batch number and week of manufacture then click on 'Save', if you boot from a OSX RAID then use the 'Save As' button to save the updated SMBIOS.plist to the two raid helper partition(s) - see here.

    Updating the SMBIOS & OSX S/N - Clover Method

    If using Clover, mount the EFI Partition and run Clover Configurator, load you config.plist and select the SMBIOS page. You can use Clovers 'Magic-Wand' to select a pre-made SMBIOS which works very similar to Chameleon Wizards 'magic wand' .... you can update and replace any of the values if necessary.
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    Important: Never ever accept the default S/N generated by Clover's 'Magic Wand' ... (same applies to CW) they are all blacklisted ... always use the two 'shake' buttons (click on them multiple times) to randomise the manufacturing batch and week numbers.

    Alternatively you can run Chameleon Wizard as detailed above and copy the values in to the respective fields in Clover Configurator.

    Note: This is also the page where you can manually inject a unique SmUUID (SystemId) see chapter-5.

    As mentioned elsewhere in the guide try to keep the number of incremental changes to your SMBIOS ID's to a minimum and always try to keep the system your configuring off-line until your happy with all the changes.

    Once you have a working set of OS X ID's keep them safe and always try use them on the same machine to avoid iMessage being disabled again, remember that these ID's would never change on a real Mac as they are baked into the system board.

    If too many of your ID's are miss-matched then those ID's could also become black-listed in which case it is best to create a whole new identity for your system by generating a new SmUUID ID (Chapter 5), OS X Serial Number and new MLB & ROM values if necessary (Chapter 7).


    Chapter 4.2 Summary:

    The System Type specified in your SMBIOS should match as close as possible the hardware you have.


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    Chapter: 4.3
    OS X Boot-Loader info
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    Boot-Loader version

    If your using Chimera (or Chameleon) as your boot-loader then ensure that the core version is 2.2 or later, if not then download and install the latest version of Chimera from the downloads section of this website or use Chameleon Wizard to update the Chameleon Boot-Loader before going any further.

    OSX RAID users will need to manually install Chimera (or Chameleon) by extracting the '/usr/standalone/ i386' folder from the boot-loader install package (I use Pacifist) and then use terminal commands to install the boot-loader files on to your RAID helper partitions - see this guide if your not familiar with the procedure.

    As explained in Chapter 7, if your running OS X 10.10.X Yosemite and want to use iMessage then you need to be using Clover as your boot-loader, for all other previous versions of OS X you can use Chimera or Chameleon.

    Time to switch to Clover ....

    As of mid 2014 I recommend everyone take a look at using Clover as their boot-loader, it's been written from the ground up to work with newer hardware and addresses many of the problems that cause iMessage to fail when using Chimera or Chameleon. I know a lot of you may think it's more complex than the older boot-loaders that your used to but in reality it's not that much different and gives you far more control and solves so many problems especially for Raid and Fusion drive users (no more cloning to fix iMessage).

    I think much of the confusion is more to do with understanding how EFI booting works rather than Clover itself, if your not sure then it's worth searching for and reading a guides that explain how EFI booting works before jumping straight into Clover. It's actually a much simpler method of booting OS's once you understand the method.

    If you find that you have hardware that does not work with Clover try getting in-touch with the developers, they are keen and Clover has nightly builds. I personally think Clover is the future for all of us, you just need to devote some time to it, I promise once you make the switch you'll never go back.


    Chapter 4.3 Summary:
    Ensure your Boot-Loader is up-to-date


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    #7

    iMessage Guide: Chapter 5



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    Chapter: 5
    SmUUID (System-ID)
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    What is a SmUUID (BIOS SystemId) ?

    All PC Motherboards BIOS's should return a 128Bit unique identifier known as the 'SystemId' or SmUUID, you can think of 'SystemId' (SM-UUID) like a motherboard's equivalent of a Ethernet MAC address, in both cases it always needs to be unique, thats the point. It's there to allow any OS (Linux, Windows, OSX ..etc) to generate a unique system identity, something which is becoming ever more important in these times of hyper-connectivity.

    OSX uses your BIOS's 'SmUUID' or 'SystemId' as part of a crypto key to generate the OSX platform (hardware) UUID of your system. If your BIOS fails to initialise 'SystemId' correctly with a unique identity then OSX could end up with a non-unique platform UUID meaning that your system's main identity ID could match someone else's ...

    Many of these generic/duplicate Hardware UUID's are now black listed on Apples servers either as masks or specific UUID's.

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    The SId Bug

    On some PC Motherboards the BIOS does not initialise 'SystemId' correctly (also know and SM-UUID) with a Universally Unique IDentifier or UUID. It would seem that in these cases 'SystemId' is set to a default (non-unique) UUID such as "00020003-0004-0005-0006-000700080009" or something very similar, I have read reports of some ASRock motherboards BIOS returning all zero's for the SystemId ?

    You can easy check if your BIOS has the SId bug by running IORegistryExplorer or IOJones and inspecting the following IORegistry tree value :-

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    <IODeviceTree : efi / platform / system-id>

    If your unfamiliar with the OSX Registry and the tools used to examine it then please see post #1007 for a bit more more info.

    If your BIOS has the SId Bug then the 16 x 16Bit values of the key name 'system-id' will contain an invalid number sequence like all zeros's or some other invalid UUID. It should consist of 16 x Byte values (16 x 2 digits - 0-9,a-f)

    On Some motherboards only one or two set's of numbers may be unique in the SM-UUID for example on Gigabyte H/Z 77/87 N-Wifi motherboards (see the list below) the SM-UUID is AAAAAAAA-BBBB-CCCC-DDDD-EEEEEEEEEEEE but only DDDD and the first 2 digits of EEEEEE.... are different. This used to be enough to allow iMessage to work, however since August 2014 it seems Apple have expanded the UUID black lists masks to include these sorts of UUID's too. I suspect in these cases the BIOS is only returning a 32 or 64 Bit number for the SM-UUID rather than a full 128bit UUID.

    Ideally all 16 hexadecimal numbers that make up the SM-UUID should be different thus making it a completely unique 128bit UUID, if any part of your SM-UUID looks like its following a number sequence then you should suspect that your BIOS is not returning a full 128bit unique SM-UUID

    Some Examples of a bad SystemId (SmUUID):

    • AAAAAAAA-BBBB-0001-0002-0003-00040005
    • AAAA0003-0004-0005-0006-BBBB-00070008
    • 00000000-0000-0000-AAAA-BBBB-CCCC0000
    • 00080009-AAAA-0001-BBBB-0002-0000CCCC

    In these examples letters (A,B,C) are random hex vales but the numbers (0001,0002 ..etc) are default or fixed (non unique) number sequences.

    If your Using Chimera or Chameleon then another clue to determine if your BIOS has the SId Bug is to check the 'UUID' in the nvram.UUID.plist filename located in the /Extra folder.

    If using Chameleon or Chimera as your boot-loader then this file is crucial for iMessage to work correctly on a hackingtosh (please read Part-1, Step-5 for detailed information) and is generated by the boot module FileNVRAM when it initialises the plist to store the NVRAM keys and data in, one of the first things FileNVRAM does is request the value of 'SystemId' from the boot-loader, if your BIOS is suffering from the SId Bug then the chances are the UUID value in the filename of nvram.UUID.plist will also be invalid.

    The following motherboards have been confirmed to suffer from the SId Bug

    • Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5-TH
    • Gigabyte GA-Z77X-UD5H
    • Gigabyte GA-Z87X-UD4H
    • Gigabyte GA-H77N-WiFi
    • Gigabyte GA-Z77N-WiFi
    • Gigabyte GA-H87N-WiFi
    • Gigabyte GA-Z87N-WiFi
    • Gigabyte P67A-UD3-B3
    • Gigabyte GA-X58A-OC
    • AsRock Z77 Extreme 6
    • AsRock H77 Pro4-M

    I will endeavour to keep this list updated to help others, if your motherboard suffers from the SId Bug and is not on the list please post feedback.

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    The SId Bug impact on OSX & iMessage

    OSX's Platform_UUID (Hardware_UUID) forms part of a complex crypto key used by Apple's on-line eco system. When you register an Apple device (or hackingtosh) with your AppleID for the first time with a iCloud service such as iMessage various security checks are run both locally and remotely. If your UUID fails to pass Apples security checks then you will get a login or activation error when starting certain iCloud services such a Facetime or iMessage.

    By manually injecting a truly unique value for 'SystemId' (SmUUID) into the boot-loader, we can override the BIOS SId Bug and allow OSX to generate a new and totally unique platform (hardware) UUID which passes Apples UUID checks allowing us access to iCloud services.

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Size:  7.5 KB How to Fix the SId Bug
    (Injection of SmUUId)

    In addition resolving the SId bug you can also use this method to override the BIOS generated SM-UUID (system-id) even if your motherboard is returning a valid SystemId (SmUUID) and is an effective way of changing the hardware identity ... this method should ideally be used in-conjunction with a new OSX S/N, ROM & MLB value so as to dis-associate the new UUID with any known and logged ID's.

    As always make sure you've got at least one up-to-date backup of your OSX system before making any changes. There is nothing here that should cause you any problems, the fix is relatively straight forward and easy to apply, just take you time and follow the instructions carefully. I am not responsible for any damage or loss of data you may incur by using this guide.

    Additional: For those of you using Chimera or Chameleon in conjunction with FileNVRAM .... please be aware that you may have problems trying to resolve the SId bug if your already having issues with MLB & ROM being persistent. Due to different versions of FileNVRAM and Chameleon/Chimera being incompatible with each other you may find it difficult to resolve both problems, please see the suggestions in Part-1, Step-5d for some guidance on Boot-Loader/FileNVRAM versions.

    If you do find yourself in this situation then my personal recommendation is to switch to Clover as your boot-loader, despite being officially still in beta (isn't all software ?) it is capable of resolving all of the SMBIOS and NVRAM issues associated with legacy boot-loaders, especially those relating to iMessage. If your having difficulty implementing the SId bug fix AND keeping MLB & ROM values persistent I recommend you take the time to migrate to Clover.

    With that out of the way .... lets begin..

    For applying manual edits to SMBIOS.plist, org.chameleon.Boot.plist or Clovers config.plist I recommend using TextWrangler by Bare Bones Software. Sometimes these files have a 'read only' flag and/or can have a 'locked' status, TextWrangler will detect both of these conditions and ask you for your OSX Admin password to continue if necessary.

    As an alternative to TextWrangler a number of users have reported the editor in Champlist also works well, you can even use TextEdit but you may have to copy the file to the desktop first then make the edits and then copy it back to the correct file location.

    To continue select the correct path based on your boot-loader and version.

    • If you are using a version of Chimera earlier than V3.0 start the guide at Path A
    • If you are using Chimera V3.0 or later then please start the guide at Path B
    • If you are using a version of Chameleon earlier than r2284 then start with Path A
    • If you are using Chameleon r2284 or later then please start the guide at Path B
    • If you are using Clover then start the guide at Path C

    Path A

    1. Open SMBIOS.plist in /Extra using TextWrangler or other editor and check if the following exists:-
      Code:
      <key>SMsystemuuid</key>
      <string>********-****-****-****-************</string>
      If this key and string value are present then please remove both items and save the file, it can interfere with the injection of your new UUID in the next step.
    2. Open org.chameleon.Boot.plist in /Extra and add the following code if its not already there:
      Code:
      <key>SystemId</key>
      <string>********-****-****-****-************</string>
      Make sure that the key name you set in your plist is called "SystemId" not "SystemID" or some other permutation.
      Jump to Step 3 below.

    Path B

    1. Open org.chameleon.Boot.plist in /Extra using TextWrangler or other editor and check if the following exists:-
      Code:
      <key>SystemId</key>
      <string>********-****-****-****-************</string>
      If this key and string value are present then please remove both items and save the file, it can interfere with the injection of your new UUID in the next step.
    2. Open yor SMBIOS.plist in /Extra add the following code if necessary:
      Code:
      <key>SMsystemuuid</key>
      <string>********-****-****-****-************</string>
      Jump to step 3 below.

    Path C

    1. Ensure you have the latest version of Clover Configurator.
    2. Run Clover Configurator and select 'SMBIOS' on the left hand plane
      (All Paths)
    3. Open a Terminal window and execute the command
      Code:
      uuidgen
      This will generate a new random UUID. Do not use an existing UUID from your OSX system such as hardware UUID in System Profiler, if you do your 'SystemId' will not be totally unique. Its worth running uuidgen four or five times, before using the value. The more times you execute the command will result in a more unique UUID.
    4. Block and copy the UUID you just generated in terminal, if you are using Clover then paste it into Clover Configurator as the value for 'SmUUID' on the SMBIOS page, save vhages (CMD-S) and exit:-
      Click image for larger version. 

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    5. If you are using Chameleon or Chimera then paste it in place of all the '*****-*****' in the code you entered in step 2 and save the file.
    6. Chameleon or Chimera users should ensure they have the correct version of 'FileNVRAM.dynlib' installed in the 'modules' folder of the /Extra folder, if your not certain which version you should be using (its important) - see Note-4 in Step-5c, Part-1 of the guide.
    7. if your Using FileNVRAM then reset it's plist using the method in Part-1, Step5-e
    8. ​Reboot and load OSX with the -f boot flag.

    Next time OSX starts you may be asked to re-authenticate your system password, you should not loose any data or applications but it has been reported by some that it can reset a few of your user profile preference settings like Launchpad layout, mouse ... etc.

    This fix should work for most users, however if the mechanism between the Boot-Loader and FileNVRAM is not working correctly you may still have old/invalid values for your MLB & ROM Values (Clover is not effected). After applying the SId bug fix i recommend you check your MLB & ROM nvram values and fix if required - see Part-1, Step 5d.

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    Post SId Bug Fix Checks

    1. As long as the 16 x 16Bit key for 'system-id' in the IORegistry (IODeviceTree : efi / platform / system-id) matches the new unique UUID that you entered at step 3 above then the Sid Bug fix is working.
    2. If your using FileNVRAM then check the 'UUID' in the filename of 'nvram.uuid.plist' in /Extra, it should match the new UUID your injecting via the boot-loader. If it's not then somethings is still not right, re-check your install of FileNVRAM if your using it, make sure you delete any old nvram.uuid.plist file(s), repair permissions if necessary (see Part-1, Step-5e) ..... re-check each step and try again until it matches. Some users have found it necessary to boot into safe-mode (-x) or single user mode (-s) and delete nvram.uuid.plist in /Extra and reboot again before everything matches.

    Maybe I'm paranoid but I try to avoid connecting to any of Apples on-line services until both the above checks are true. Each time you try with a different UUID and/or S/N you could be registering yet another UUID or S/N miss-match against your AppleID so keep off-line until everything looks ok is not a bad idea.

    After successfully applying the SId Bug fix, you should recheck everything using iMessage Debug as detailed in Part-1, Step-5d.

    Once iMessage is working, I recommend you avoid changing the UUID's and S/N again, try to use the same injected SmUUID (SystemId) and S/N through-out the life of the hackingtosh. Only change them if you want to register it as a new device against your AppleID, just don't do it too often to stay off Apple's radar.

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    UUID Summary:

    On a working OSX system the following should all be true.

    • The platform UUID (via terminal command: "ioreg -lw0 | grep PlatformUUID") and hardware UUID (via System Profiler -> Hardware Overview) should always be the same.
    • The IOReg key "system-id" (IORegistry: IODeviceTree : efi / platform / system-id) should always be 16 x 16Bit unique hex numbers and will always be different to the OSX platform & Hardware UUID regardless if manually injected or supplied by the BIOS.
    • If using FileNVRAM then the UUID in the nvram.UUID.plist filename located in the /Extra folder should be the same UUID as the key system-id (IORegistry: IODeviceTree : efi / platform / system-id)

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    Still not working ....

    After applying the SId Bug fix some of you may still find you can not use iMessage ....

    If you get a Sign-In or Activation alert when starting iMessage, in most cases simply changing the password of your AppleID (an old iMessage fix) is enough to get things working again, if it still does not work I would suggest working through all of Part-1 of the guide, as long as the SId Bug is fixed you should be able to get iMessage working again, always ensue OSX S/N and System Type are valid and that MLB & ROM values are persistent.

    If you get a message asking you to contact Apple with a customer code then keep calm and don't worry, just keep reading ...

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    Last edited by tonymacx86; 02-20-2015 at 02:47 PM.

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    #8

    How to Fix iMessage (JAYMONKEY NEW WORKING DRAFT)



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    Chapter: 6
    NVRAM
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    The Problem

    On all genuine Apple Mac's, OSX stores some critical system keys and values in Non Volatile RAM (NVRAM) rather than writing them to a config file or plist on your startup drive. The NVRAM is Apple bespoke hardware built into a Mac's system board and forms part of Apple's OSX authentication system, as such PC motherboards & laptops do not have this hardware.

    iMessage stores several important key values in NVRAM which form part of a long chain of crypto key's used by OSX for keeping content secure, an important factor in Apple's on-line eco system and one which iMessage relies on. If certain keys are not saved in NVRAM then the next time the system is powered off or re-booted iMessage may suffer from login and/or activation problems.

    There has been much work done in the community to try and resolve this issue and the latest versions of Chameleon and Chimera include a fix that try's to maintain these critical values in OSX's NVRAM cache. However for reasons outside the scope of this guide it does not work reliably for everyone.

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    The Solution

    Clover Boot-loader users:

    Clover creates a much more complete NVRAM cache at boot time than legacy Boot-Loaders such as Chameleon and Chimera, OSX reads NVRAM values from a cache rather than the slow Non Volatile RAM ... as such this negates most of the problems associated with not having the NVRAM hardware, please skip down to Section 5d.

    Chameleon and Chimera Users:

    Note: The following method will only work for OSX 10.9.x Mavericks or earlier, If you want to run OSX 10.10 Yosemite and still want to use iMessage then the only solution at the moment is to update your boot-loader to Clover.

    Update: 08-12-2014: New Version of FileNVRAM now available

    A new version of FileNVRAM (1.1.4) has been released with limited support for Yosemite, you must use it in conjunction with the latest release of Chameleon - it does not currently work with Chimera - Please see the News article at the top of the guide dated 08-12-2014 for more information and download link.

    The Hackingtosh group xZenue has released a boot-loader plug-in module called 'FileNVRAM' that simulates Apple's Non Volatile RAM hardware through software emulation and store's the NVRAM keys and values in a plist called nvram.xxxxxxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxxxxxx.plist located in the /Extra folder of your OSX startup drive.

    The nvram plist is automatically generated by the FileNVRAM module the first time it is initialised and allows OSX to maintain NVRAM keys and values through power cycles and reboots. Depending on your system type, additional OSX settings may also be written to the simulated NVRAM such as brightness & volume levels.

    You can check the content of OSX's NVRAM by starting a terminal window and typing 'nvram -x -p' and pressing return (do not include the quotes), the resulting output should list the current contents of the NVRAM, please note that many of the key values are encrypted or displayed as base64 values.

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    Installing the FileNVRAM module for Legacy Boot-Loaders

    For older systems (pre Chimera 2.6) download the attached file ‘modules.zip’ and extract it, the contents are a folder called 'modules' that has a single file in it named 'FileNVRam.dylib', copy the ‘modules’ folder and paste it in the ‘/Extra’ folder in the root of your startup drive

    Important: Because of the way FileNVRAM works it must exist in /Extra/modules in the root of your OSX Start-Up Drive, if you boot using a USB key or from another drive the you need to address this before continuing. Normally this will involve using the stand-alone installer for your chosen boot-loader and install it on you OSX drive - RAID and Fusion drive users may have to use the terminal method to install the boot-loader - see both sections of the guide that deal specifically on Raid (Fusion) drives.

    Remember you only need to install FileNVRAM if your using Chameleon or Chimera, if your using Clover as your boot loader then you should skip down to the next step.

    For Systems that already have a 'modules' folder in /Extra then download the additional attached zip file that contains both versions of FileNVRAM (V1.1.2 & 1.1.3) and use the required version (see note 4 below)

    Important notes about installing NVFileRAM:-

    1.
    More recent versions of Multibeast now create the 'modules' folder in /Extra and place other '.dylib' files inside it, if you already have a 'modules' folder then just merge the contents of the attachment with the existing folder.

    2. If you use the tip to move the /Extra folder and boot-loader files to the unused EFI partition then the chances are that FileNVRAM will not work for long, it is similar to the issue that effects RAID users in that once OSX is booted the EFI partition is unmounted so OSX no longer has access to the nvram.uuid.plist. To resolve this issue move the /Extra folder to the root of your startup drive and reinstall Chameleon or Chimera to the default location on the same drive, then use Disk Utility to erase the EFI partition (you will have to mount it first). This will not work for RAID or Fusion Drive systems. You could also try using EFI Mounter which is available in the Community Downloads sections of this site, This utility ensures that the EFI partition is mounted once OSX is booted which should allow FileNVRAM to function normally.

    3. In addition to having a unique OSX S/N (see Step-3) you must also have a unique OSX platform UUID, this is anther unique system identity and is normally generated by OSX via a key passed from the BIOS called 'SystemID'.

    In April 2014, Apple implemented new checks on their severs to make sure all iMessage packets are authenticated, these new checks ultimately led to the discovery of the "SId Bug" in the BIOS of some motherboard's which can cause a hackingtosh to have an invalid or duplicated platform UUID because 'SystemId' is not initialised correctly.

    Since FileNVRAM also needs to use the value of 'SystemId' it is important to make sure your BIOS does not suffer from the 'SId Bug' so now is a good time to jump over to Part-2 of the guide and check to see if your BIOS is effected by it and apply the fix if necessary.

    4.
    The version of FileNVRam.dynib included in the modules attachment of this guide is V1.1.2 this version is recommend for all Chimera Versions up-to 2.2.1. If you are using Chimera Version 3.0 or later then TonyMacx86 recommends that you use version 1.1.3 of FileNVRAM which you can download directly from this link, download and unzip the archive, you only need the file called 'FileNVRAM.dylib' copy and paste it in the /Extra/modules folder, delete the old version first if already there - alternatively download the attached archive which contains both version of FileNVRAM and replace your exsisting version with the correct one.

    A small number of users have encountered issues with Chimera Version 3+ and have either stuck with FileNVRAM V1.1.2 or backed out Chimera to version 2.2.1 and FileNVRAM V1.1.2 this seems to effect some users running OSX 10.8 x (Mountain Lion). If your running Mavericks then use the latest versions of Chimera and FileNVRAM.

    Please note that if you have recently updated to Chimera V3.0 or later and are injecting 'SystemId' in order to negate the SId bug then you must use the SMBIOS injection method, please see Part-2 (Step-7, Path B) for more info if you have not already done this.

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    Reset FileNVRAM Plist
    (Chimera & Chameleon only)

    Sometimes the key data stored within FileNVRAM's plist can get out of sync, for instance if you change your OSX S/N the MLB value in NVRAM may not match the new one. There are multiple reasons for resetting FileNVRAM plist.

    I recommend resetting the NVRAM plist when ever you change anything to do with the system identities (UUID, S/N, System Type .. etc) or after using step 4 of the guide. I tend to do this all the time when working on fixing iMessage.

    Because FileNVRAM's job is to keep the nvram.uuid.plist in /Extra updated at all-times - on some systems the file can be recreated during a OSX shutdown in which case it may not pick up changes to certain SMBIOS parameters. So we need to temporally disable FileNVRAM - this fail-safe method will ensure that you always get an entirely new and correct uuid.nvram.plist.

    1. Disconnect from Internet
    2. Copy FileNVRAM.dylib from /Extra/modules to your Desktop
    3. Remove FileNVRAM.dylib from the /Extra/modules
    4. Reboot
    5. Remove all nvram.uuid.plist's and empty the Trash
    6. Reboot
    7. Ensure that there are no nvram.uuid.plist's in /Extra.
    8. Make any necessary changes to SMBIOS
    9. Copy FileNVRAM.dynlib from your Desktop back to /Extra/modules
    10. Open a terminal window and execute the following command:-
      Code:
      sudo nvram boot-args=""
      This console command clears the value of the 'boot-args' key stored in the OSX NVRAM cache which can sometimes interfere with creating a new 'nvram.uuid.plist' file in /Extra if set.
    11. Reboot.
    12. Check that a new nvram.uuid.plist has been recreated in /Extra
    13. Check uuid in filename matches (IORegistry: IODeviceTree : efi / platform / system-id)
    14. Check MLB & ROM using iMessage Debug
    15. You may have to re-inject your MLB & ROM value if so inject it and reboot, check again
    16. If all looks well reconnect to the Internet


    Chapter 6 Summary:
    If using Chimera or Chameleon as your boot-loader you must have FileNVRAM.dylib installed in /Extra/modules.


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    #9

    iMessage Guide: Chapter 7



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    Chapter: 7.1
    MLB & ROM ID Values
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    There are two critical key values stored in NVRAM that iMessage uses during authenticating the iMessage security token. These are the MLB (Mac Logic Board) and ROM data values.

    Chameleon and Chimera users can view the raw NVRAM values using the terminal command 'NVRAM -x -p' which will display all the current keys and values stored in NVRAM including MLB & ROM. Many of the values will seem like random alpha-numeric strings, this is actually the data value encoded in base64, you can use an on-line base64 converter to convert the <data> values to hexadecimal values, i use this one:-

    http://www.motobit.com/util/base64-decoder-encoder.asp

    Which can convert in both directions should you need to ...

    A easer way to check these values is to use the attached utility 'iMessage Debug' which should work for all boot-loaders including Clover.

    Update Oct 2014: New version of iMessage Debug (V2.0) available - see the announcement dated 14th Oct 2014 in the News Archive of the guide. I recommend everyone switching to this new version which includes a useful option to dump the output to a log file and will also extract/display the current SmUUID (System-ID) value.

    To use iMessage Debug .... download the attachment from the Files section of the guide and extract, there is no install required, simply double click (or right-click -> Open) in Finder to execute the script. It should open a terminal windows and dump all of the critical iMessage values from the NVRAM Cache including MLB, ROM, Hardware (Platform) UUID, S/N .. etc in a readable form.
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Depending on the version of iMessage debug you use (or if you used the NVRAM command) then the MLB and ROM values may be prefixed by a UUID and will look something like this:-

    4D1EDE05-38C7-4A6A-9CC6-4BCCA8B38C14:ROM <xxxxxx...>
    4D1EDE05-38C7-4A6A-9CC6-4BCCA8B38C14:MLB xxxxxxx...


    Note: Version 1.0 of iMessage Debug surrounds the The ROM value with '<' and '>' and will also insert a space between the 8th and 9th digit, this is a formatting issue and you should ignore these when referencing the ROM Value, just use the 12 Hex numbers.

    If the values (xxx..) following these prefixes are incorrect, such as all zeros, null or blank then iMessage will have registration issues. Note that the UUID prefix should not and must not be the same as SM-UUID or Hardware (Platform) UUID - in most cases it will be the same UUID as above which is ok.

    The MLB Value Should be 13 digits in length if you have an 11 digit OSX S/N or 17 digits long if you have 12 digit OSX S/N. It is made up of a series of alpha-numeric characters much like the OSX Serial Number (see Part-1, Step-3). 13 digit MLB's are associated with Pre 2011/12 hardware and its syntax/format is largely understood where as more recent Apple hardware use the 17 digit MLB format which is still not fully understood.

    NOTE: If you want to learn a lot more about the formatting and correct make-up of the MLB value I recommend reading @holyfield's 'Pattern of MLB' article over at Insanely Mac. Using this article it is possible to piece together a valid and correctly formatted 13 or17 digit MLB however it will require that read the entire thread not just the over-view and require you to search suppliers of Apple system boards in order to find the correct 'EEE' code if you do not already know it. As of Feb 2015 most users should be able to use the simpler method of generating a working MLB as detailed below .....

    The ROM value Should be 6 Bytes long (12 hexadecimal digits)

    In addition to having valid values for MLB and ROM it is vital that these values are also persistent between shutdowns and reboots, as already discussed above, if these NVRAM values are not maintained either by Clover or FileNVRAM then the boot-loader will generate new random values on each boot.

    In this case iMessage may continue to work for a while, but Apples servers will detect the change in these ID's values the next time you log-in/authenticate. If this happens too often then it will cause a IP/Device lockout to be placed on your AppleID. This is a part of Apples backend security checks to stop hackers from cloning OSX system identities.

    Checking for persistent nvram values is easy, simply run iMessage Debug and make a note of the MLB and ROM values or take a screen dump of the iMessage Debug window.

    Note: Version 2.0 of iMessage Debug has the facility to dump the output to a text file (see News 14th Oct 2014)

    Once you've got a note of your initial ID values, shutdown and power back up, boot OSX and re-run iMessage Debug, if the simulation of NVRAM is working correctly then the MLB and ROM values will be the same as they were on the previous boot..

    If you have invalid MLB and/or ROM values (all zeros, blank, invalid syntax) and/or the values are changing on each boot-up then you must address this issue before going any further, whist working on these types of issues I recommend keeping disconnected from all of Apple iCloud services (logout from iMessage, iCloud .. etc) do not try to login until your happy that everything is correct - if you can disconnect the system from the internet.

    NOTE: If your booting via Clover then skip this list and continue with 'Manual Injection of MLB & ROM Values' below.'

    If using Chimera or Chameleon as your boot-loader then check these things first :-

    • If you are booting or trying to boot Yosemite then you must be using the latest versions of Chimera and FileNVRAM .... these new versions are still in development and compatibility with Chameleon requires a slightly different version of FileNVRAM (see News dated 8th Dec 2014)
    • There have been reports that UEFI can cause problems on some systems that are booting a legacy boot-loader, if you have the option available and are not running Windows 8 in UEFI mode then disable all UEFI options in the BIOS and use legacy boot options (SATA-P0 .. etc)
    • Certain versions of Chimera and Chameleon can have issues with FileNVRAM if too many 'dylib' files are in the modules folder, try removing some or all of the other dylib files and see if that helps.
    • It has been reported that ACPICodec.dylib will cause problems with FileNVRAM, if it exists in your modules folder - remove it.
    • Ensure that all files in the 'modules' folder are .dylib files, if any other file types are in the modules folder remove them, it has been reported that some versions of the boot-loader may try to load any file as a module even if it does not have a .dylib suffix, which can abort the SMBIOS/NVRAM initialisation process.
    • Try updating your BIOS, whist not directly related to MLB and ROM issues it has been found to help some users. If your using a custom/patched DSDT you may need to rebuild it.
    • If you are running a version of OSX earlier than OSX 10.9.x then consider updating to Mavericks or Yosemite. there have been a plenty of reports that some users were not able to get the MLB and ROM values persistent until they updated to at least Mavericks, this is not something I can not confirm as i've not personally experienced it.

    Manual Injection of MLB & ROM values

    WARNING: You may come across posts on this and other forums quoting the use of real Apple Mac MLB & ROM values (also OS X Serial Numbers). I strongly advise against using these shared/leeched/stolen values. Apple is getting more wise to hackingtosh systems using cloned ID's and you will almost certainly encounter issues with iMessage authentication and and may loose the ability to associate other Apple devices with your AppleID ..... you may even be locked out of your account if the same MLB and/or ROM value is used too many times. By using someone else's MLB and ROM values you are effectively cloning/spoofing that persons system on Apples iMessage servers which can't be good for them or for you from a security point of view - Please see the warning at the end of this chapter for more information

    With that said and out of the way, many users have had huge success activating iMessage by manually injecting unique and correctly formatted MLB and ROM values:-

    For the MLB value use your OSX S/N + random alpha/numeric values to make the correct length based upon the length of your OSX S/N

    • If you have 11 digit S/N then your MLB should be 13 characters long
    • If you have 12 digit S/N then your MLB should be 17 characters long


    Using MLB Generators: There are a number of different MLB generator utilities/tools floating about, at the time of writing non of the current generators produce a 100% accurate MLB. The 17 digit MLB generators are still lacking the understanding of two pairs of digits so will never produce a 100% certain result. The latest 13 Digit Generators are getting close to being able to produce valid value however - if you do use a generator do not use the value until you understand the patten/make-up of the MLB .... check the date and 'EEE' code by reading @holyfield's 'Pattern of MLB' article over at Insanely Mac.

    The ROM value is a heated discussion on many OSX Hackingtosh forums, some people think on a real Mac it is the MAC address of the firewire port, others believe that iMessage will only work if it is a cloned value form a real Apple Mac. The truth is that it just has to be unique and 6 bytes long (12 Hexadecimal numbers), since a Network MAC address is 6 bytes and unique its a good value to use.

    An easy way to get a MAC address is to open 'System Preferences', click on 'Network' and select a Ethernet port from the list of available network devices (any will do) , then click on the 'Advanced' button and select the 'Hardware' tab, make a note of the MAC address, it will be 6 bytes ( 6 x 2 Hexadecimal numbers) each separated by a colon, do not include the colons when injecting a MAC address as a ROM value - you just need the hex numbers.

    MLB & ROM Injection Method for Chameleon & Chimera Users:

    To inject new nvram values open terminal and use the following commands :-
    Code:
    sudo nvram 4D1EDE05-38C7-4A6A-9CC6-4BCCA8B38C14:MLB=xxxxxxxxxxx
    sudo nvram 4D1EDE05-38C7-4A6A-9CC6-4BCCA8B38C14:ROM=xxxxxxxxx
    In each case, replace 'xxxxx' with the appropriate value and be sure to always use the same prefix UUID as displayed via iMessage Debug (normally 4D1EDE05-38C7-4A6A-9CC6-4BCCA8B38C14)

    When injecting the ROM value place a '%' in front of each byte

    Example:-

    Ethernet MAC address = 23:f4:e7:65:4a:44

    To inject the above as a ROM value execute:
    Code:
    sudo nvram 4D1EDE05-38C7-4A6A-9CC6-4BCCA8B38C14:ROM=%23%f4%e7%65%4a%44
    Important: FileNVRAM must be installed and working correctly in order for OSX to remember the new MLB and ROM values after a power down or reboot (Chimera & Chameleon only)

    After changing the MLB and/or ROM values, run iMessage Debug again and check the change, then reboot the computer and run iMessage Debug again, ensure the the new values are persistent, if they are then try a few more reboots/power downs ..etc, if all still looks good then your done with configuring your MLB & ROM vlaues.

    Hoever, if they keep changing then the most likely cause is a software incompatibility between the FileNVRAM module and your Boot-Loader, this is a very common issue and may not be straight forward to resolve.

    Your only real option now is to try different versions of FileNVRAM and/or Chimera/Chameleon, If your using Chimera try switching to Chameleon.

    I recommend using Chameleon Wizard version 4.4.1 or later to install different versions of Chameleon - on the 'Install page' use the drop down to select the Chameleon version you want to try and set the install method to 'Update' ensure you check the box 'Install more boot-loader files' then click on the 'Install' button. Thats - it. You can easily switch between different versions of Chameleon using this method, to switch back to Chimera run the appropriate standalone installer. Some of your boot.plist options may need adjustment to get optimum performance and full GPU support.
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    Many users have reported good success with OSX Mavericks using Chameleon r2283 and version 1.1.3 of FileNVRAM, if your BIOS has the SId bug don't forget different versions of Chimera and Chameleon require different methods for injecting SystemId (SM-UUID) see Chapter-5.

    If after trying all of the above you find that your MLB & ROM values are still changing on each boot AND your motherboard's BIOS suffers from the SId bug (See Part-2 of the guide) then your very likely to find yourself in a rather frustrating situation. Due to version incompatibilities with the SMBIOS memory tables between Chameleon (Chimera) and FileNVRAM you may find that you can not solve both the SId bug and Non-persistent NVRAM values at the same time.

    If you don't know if your motherboard suffers from the Sid bug then stop and Chapter-5 of the guide now, check to see your BIOS has it, if it's OK and is not suffering from the Sid bug then carry on trying different versions of Chameleon you have a fair chance of finding a combination that will work.

    However, if your BIOS does have the SId bug and a BIOS update does not help, then I seriously suggest you consider switching to Clover as your boot-loader, you could save yourself a lot of time and frustration. If you've been thinking about taking a look at Clover then do it now. Whilst it is possible to resolve both of these issues without using Clover I would say that you now have a 12% or less chance of it working (depending mostly on hardware).

    Don't be afraid to learn something new, Clover is really worth the effort and once you've got it working resolving any SMBIOS/NVRAM Injection issues is straightforward and you'll kick your-self for not doing it sooner. I consider Clover the future for OSX hackingtosh systems, Personally I find it easer to install OSX using unibeast and then Install Clover as the boot-Loader (see Post #1272 for more info)

    Method for CLOVER Users:

    I always recommend manually injecting your MLB & ROM values using the RT (Run Time) Variables method as its easer to understand and should result in predictable results however you should be aware that Clover also has an automatic way of injecting and generating MLB & ROM values - If you want to understand this side of Clover see the Update below.

    I also recommend that you use Clover Configurator for maintaining Clover's config.plist, the latest version can always be download from here, whilst it's quite easy to to manually edit the config.plist using text wangler or any other text editor .... some of Clover's plist formatting is very specific so I personally always use the configurator.
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    When working with Clover in EFI mode you will need to mount the normally hidden EFI Partition. Clover Configurator has an option to do this for you when you run it but i use a small OSX menu utility called Semulov which can be download for free from the developers web site here, die hard terminal users can mount it from the console using diskutil.

    Run Clover Configurator and mount the EFI Partition if you've not already done so. Click on the 'Home' Icon and load the config.plist from your /EFI/Clover folder. If this is the first time you've run Configurator then you may need to use the import option to load the config.

    Once loaded, click on 'RT Variables' on the left selection plane and enter your MLB and ROM values in the appropriate fields.

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    If your not using Clover Configurator (which I highly recommend for simplicity) you can open Clover's config.plist in TextWrangler or similar and find the the 'Rt Variables' section, add the following keys and values, if you don't have a Rt Variables section then add all of the following code:-
    Code:
    <key>RtVariables</key>
    <dict>
        <key>MLB</key>
        <string>XXXXXXXXXX</string>
        <key>ROM</key>
        <data>YYYYYYYYYYY</data>
    </dict>
    Clover Update October 2014:

    As of Oct 2014 Clover & Clover Configurator developers have altered the automatic way of generating and injecting ID's for OS X ... On the RT Variables page is a new ID Generator which will attempt to extract your systems SmUUID (System-ID) along with a few other default values and generate/calculate a full set of OS X ID's for your system ...

    The Official Clover Wiki attempts to explain the new generation/injection method but it's not easy to understand (IMHO) this is my understanding of it:-

    ROM: This will be the last 6 bytes of the 'SmUUID' value. If you have not generated your own SmUUID (using 'uuidgen' in Terminal) and entered it in the the SmUUID field (on the SMBIOS page) then Clover will try to use your BIOS's SystemId. I personally think it's always best to override the BIOS (even if it does not suffer from the SId bug)

    Note: It is important to understand that configuring Clover like this will cause your existing Hardware (Platform) UUID to change ... whilst this in-it's-self is not a problem it will change the identity of your system from your previous install which in-turn may cause some user profile settings to be changed due to the Hardware (Platform) UUID being used as a key value for storing some OSX configuration data against.

    MLB: Will be read from the 'Board Serial Number' (BSN) field on the SMBIOS page (the new generator will create a value for BSN). On a clean Clover install this is defaulted to Clovers own pre-set static value which is of-course black-listed on Apples systems. You therefore must replace this with your existing MLB value (on an existing install) or use your OSX S/N + Random Alpha / Numeric digits to make it up to the required length if not using the generator.

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    iMessage Debug not Working: There are quite a few versions of iMessage Debug floating around on GitHub. Since it is a terminal framework utility the version's attached to this guide may not work on older versions of OSX, if it does not work for you try finding an alternate version or downloading a source file and compile it on your own system or you can use Darwin Dumper as an alternative.

    Credits: iMessage Debug was originally created by @ElNono based on the iMessage login research done by @tflux back in September 2013 a big thank you goes out to those guys.


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    Chapter: 7.2
    Cloning OSX ID's
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    Using Leached ID's (Stolen Identity)

    There are been several posts in the thread related to using leached 'Real Mac' ID's. Whilst this method was known to work and several forum members were using this method, unless you own the Mac who's ID's you are going to clone, and you know for sure it is either broken or will be never be used with iMessage again then I strongly recommend that everyone else avoid this method.

    If you use the 'Stolen Identity' method for your MLB and/or ROM then your iMessage data is essentially using the same authentication token as the machine who's ID's you've cloned/stolen. Even if you change the ID's after registering with iCloud, the iMessage authentication token remains in place until you logout. Thats why if you get automatically logged out and your ID's have changed since initial authetication (such as MLB or ROM because they are not persistent) then the token can no longer be authenticated.

    Since it's relatively easy to intercept IP packets (especially on non-secure wifi) it opens a security hole that could potently be used to receive someone else's iMessage packets.

    My main concern is that if too many people use leached ID's then Apple will be forced to change the whole iMessage protocol which could be a real problem for us hackingtosh users, potentially locking us all out of the service for good which would be a real shame.

    I understand why some of you are getting frustrated and resorting to this method, but i think it can only end badly for everyone if it becomes a common practice.

    As already mentioned, for some of you this will mean ditching the familiarity of Chameleon/Chimera and moving over to Clover which may seem daunting especially for novices but it really is not and once you have got your head around it you'll wonder why you didn't do it sooner. It really is the future for hackingtosh systems.

    Update: During late November 2014 Apple introduced enhanced verification checking of MLB values during iMessage authentication, this seems to have been a direct response to the increased use of cloned MLB & ROM values to negate having to call Apple with a customer code.

    Update-2: Feb 2015 - It would appear that Apple have relaxed the level of MLB verification allowing the use of basic generated MLB's as detailed in this chapter, however cloned values will still cause issues ....

    Please don't resort to using hackers methods, it will give this community a bad name and could make things very difficult for all of us in the future. My personal feeling is that Apple are actually ok with people using OSX on their PC's. After all the OS is free .... surely it would be better for Apple if PC users dropped Windows in favour of OSX ? .... leading to increased awareness of Apple eco systems and features ... it could even be considered clever marketing by Apple .... it's advertising that money cant buy (literally for a lot of us) .... however if the hackingtosh community abuse Apple's tolerance by stealing real Mac ID's then we should not be surprised if they do something about it, especially when it concerns the on-line security of their customers.

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    #10

    How to Fix iMessage (JAYMONKEY NEW WORKING DRAFT)



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    Chapter: 8
    Contacting Apple Support
    (Activation of Customer Code)
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    If you are receiving a iMessage alert informing you that you need to contact Apple Customer support with a customer code then iMessage is now communicating with Apples iMessage servers correctly, however as discussed earlier in the guide its possible that too many device ID's have been logged against your AppleID or that your MLB & ROM are not white-listed on Apples database .... both these situations will result in the following iMessage alert:-

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    Background Info: As already detailed in the guide, Apple log and store various ID's from your OSX device such as MLB, ROM and Hardware UUID each time you attempt to log into/Authenticate with iMessage's servers .... these ID's must be valid and verified against black lists, masks and security checks ... you will only see the above error once your ID's pass these checks.

    Once logged into iMessage your system will receive a security token which will allow iMessage to continue to work without having to login and authenticate on each boot, the Token has an expiry date/time ... when the token expires the iMessage agent service will attempt to automatically authenticate again with the iMessage servers ... if some of your ID's (MLB/ROM) have been changing then the service will be unable to authenticate because the ID's are different to those that were registered the first time your system connected to the iMessage servers.

    By now you should have been through the entire guide and checked all your ID's to ensure they are the correct syntax and persistent, if your getting the above alert and your still unsure about your ID's then an easy way to confirm that everything is persistent is to reboot / power off and restart two or three times and make a note of the Customer Code each time you try to login.

    The Customer Code is generated by a crypto algorithm using several of your systems ID's and your AppleID. If the Customer Code is not the same each time you run iMessage then one (or more) of your ID's is still not persistent and you need to check everything again.

    What Causes this Message ?

    The most common cause of this message is that your MLB and/or ROM value are not registered on Apple system, this can happen to genuine Mac's after a system board has been repaired or replaced.

    I found out about another cause of this message after a long chat with a particularly helpful Apple Support guy, I found out that Apple log the number of Apple iMessage capable devices against a single WAN IP (not your local LAN IP's but your routers Internet IP). So this will include any and all hackingtosh systems with changing personalities or ID's (eg ROM value changing on each boot). All of these miss-matches count as 'IP' marks against your account, once a limit has been reached a 'IP block is put on each device against you AppleID.

    If you've been running OSX with non-persistent ID's for some time then it's quite likely that your AppleID has been flagged as having too many OSX devices or ID miss-matches associated with it thus leading to the Customer Code message.

    Note: OSX USB installers such as Unibeast override many things during OSX boot-up including nvram values which can cause the MLB & ROM to fail (confirmed by iMessage Debug). If the system is able to connect to Apples systems it will still attempt to identify it's self thus potentially logging anther bad device against your WAN IP.

    Unless you are using a fully configured Clover based system, when re-installing or updating OSX such as applying a Combo-Update I recommend completely isolating the system from the internet. Only reconnect to the internet once the install/update is complete and iMessage Debug returns the same values you had before - see Part-1, Step-5d of the guide for further info on using iMessage Debug.

    There is not much you can do locally to stop this, it's automatic and is part of Apples back-end customer security service, they are basically looking for and logging WAN IP address that have a 'high-volume' of Apple Devices associated with them. If like me you have multiple hacks on your local LAN then try allocating them static IP address via your router's DHCP service .... anything you can do to limit changes will help.

    Each device on your network will generate it's own unique customer code, so if you've got multiple hacks, first ensure that they all have valid and persistent ID's and that they always generate the same customer code each time you try to log into iMessage. If they generate different codes each time then one (or more) of your ID's is changing and you need to check everything again. If they are all consistent then make a note of all the Customer Codes, it's far easer to deal with all of them in one hit rather than calling Apple multiple times.

    Before contacting Apple support its worth setting up a 'Voice Pass' telephone number for security checks, simply log-in to your Apple ID at: https://supportprofile.apple.com, add the phone number you are going to use to contact Apple with and check 'VoicePass'. This will make it easier for Apple to identify thats it's you calling and should negate some security questions. You can also add a mobile number and allow SMS security messaging which can help to avoid un-necessary security questions being asked when you contact Apple.

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    After setting up 'Voice Pass' you should get an email from Apple confirming your Telephone No.
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    If you own a Apple iPhone or LTE capable iPad then I also recommend that you enable 2 step authentication on your AppleID, again this will help to affirm your identity with Apple and in some cases the support department may ask you to use your 2 step authentication to generate a temporary support code.

    Do not be afraid to contact Apple just because your using a hackingtosh, but only do it once you get the alert with a customer code and a request to contact Apple support. In almost all cases Apple customer support will help you with the lockout. The easiest and best way to contact Apple and to get through to the correct department is via the the Apple Support Website, use the following link :-

    www.apple.com/support/country/

    Select your country/location and on the next page click on the 'Contact Support' link just below 'Contact Us' then on the next page click on 'Get Started':-


    You will now be presented with a list of options for different Apple support departments so from here follow this path :-

    • More Products and Services
    • Apple ID
    • Other Apple ID Topics
    • Messages and Apple ID
    • Talk to Apple Support Now or Schedule a Call

    If you follow the above path you'll enter your OSX S/N - use the one from SMBIOS in most cases this may help to avoid having to give the operator your OSX S/N . Once you do get through to a human explain that your having trouble with iMessage login on you MAC and that you have a customer code.

    Important: Make sure your OSX S/N is valid but unregistered ..... See Part-1, Step-3

    In the instance of a iMessage lockout Apple are supporting the software (OSX) and your AppleID not the Hardware so you do not need a warranty with standard or extended. The only reason they may push for a OSX S/N is to log the support call against as that is standard procedure, try and take control of the conversation and steer it back to the iMessage customer code issue and away from the OSX S/N ... be assertive and confident.

    If they continue to push for a OSX S/N You have a number of options, you could say your away from home and not in front of the MAC so you may have written down the S/N incorrectly or that you've lent it to your parents or a relative. You could say it was bought from a friend or as a 2nd use system via eBay or Crags list.

    If you own a real Apple MAC then go-a-head and give them the OSX S/N from that, if its registered to you then even better and you should avoid any further discussion about the OSX S/N not being registered.

    Tip: Be sure that you know what your System Type and year of manufacture is as they may ask you to confirm it ... (Eg: iMac 14,2 = 27" iMac Late 2013) you can use Mac Tracker to confirm this if your not sure.

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    If you don't own a real MAC try giving them the S/N generated by Clover/Chameleon Wizard .. etc - of course I you know its not registered so it's not going to be on their system, never, ever give them a leached OSX S/N that is not yours .... doing so could be classed as fraud.

    They probably ask you to confirm the S/N two or three times while they tried to find it on their system, in my case I was told to hold while they tried a 'different older system' eventually they apologised for taking so long and that there must be an issue with their system.

    As stated above, the only reason they want a OSX Serial Number is because Apples helpdesk system asks the operator for the OSX S/N to log the call against, in my case I was asked if I was ok with them logging the call against my AppleID, I told them thats fine and we moved on to discussing the iMessage issue.

    At this point you may be asked to login into your AppleID account via the AppleID support web page and generate a temporary support pin, this is straight forward and easy to do, as long as your have a validated AppleID and at least one registered legit Apple device - see Part-1, Step-1. If you've set up 2FA then let the operator know what your doing, it all helps to add credibility to your call.

    Eventually the operator will ask you to confirm your AppleID and the Customer Code from the iMessage alert at which point it will be entered into their system and the operator should say that it accepted the code and to try logging into iMessage - if you have followed the guide correctly then you should now be up and running.

    As noted above, if you have multiple devices give the operator all the customer codes, one at a time and try iMessage as each device is unlocked. I did all five of my systems in one hit.

    Many users have posted very positive feedback after contacting Apple to remove the lock-out, in almost all cases they are friendly and helpful and most don't really care about the fact your using a Hackingtosh. If you want to read some positive feedback from users who have already done this take a look at posts #1043 onwards ...

    Personally I will say that Apples customer service is truly excellent and should be the benchmark for the industry, being able to set up the call to the correct department and validate yourself before the call is made works well and the fact that Apple then call you so the call does not cost you anything is the cherry on the top.

    If you find yourself having trouble with the call be patent and try not to give up, keep pressing the Customer Code and use my tips above, if you do falter or have been particularly unlucky with the Apple support operator you got through and you have to end the call without resolution then give it a day or so and try again, hopefully you'll get through to a different Apple support representative who will be able to help, you can even tell them that the previous attempt wasn't successful just be calm and confident.

    As noted through-out the guide once iMessage is working try to keep all your critical ID's, OSX S/N, SM-UUID, System Type, MLB, ROM .. etc the same throughout the life of the system. The easy way to do this is to keep a backup of your /Extra folder or backup your config.plist if using Clover.

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