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I just opened a new Macbook Pro out of the box and, after going through the initial setup (language, timezone, name, etc.), I see the login screen without my username. I tried typing in my username (manually) and password but nothing happens. The only option is to click the back button which then shows a blank alias picture with the word Other underneath it

If I reboot the computer pressing Command+Sand then do ls /Users to see the users on the system it only has .localized and Shared directories.

How do I correct this so I can have an initial user account?

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Try rm /var/db/.AppleSetupDone in Single User Mode to force the initial setup to run again. –  Daniel B Jun 5 at 4:44

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First, reboot and hold Command+S while it's booting to enter single user mode. When the command line comes up, run the following two commands:

mount -uw /
rm /var/db/.AppleSetupDone

Then reboot the usual way or, if you want to be fancy, use the command line by typing shutdown -r now

After that, I went through the setup the exact same way as before but this time it actually ended with my user logging in.

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