Monday, December 22, 2008

Disabling hardware via kernel extensions

You can disable hardware components in OS X by deleting (or renaming) the kernel extension directory that contains the driver for that piece of hardware.

Kernel extensions are stored in subdirectories in /System/Library/Extensions.

In some cases, there is more than one driver involved, so you need to delete or rename multiple directories.

Drivers for AirPort wireless:
  • AppleAirPort.kext
  • AppleAirPort2.kext
  • AppleAirPortFW.kext
Drivers for Bluetooth wireless:
  • IOBluetoothFamily.kext
  • IOBluetoothHIDDriver.kext
Drivers for external mass storage (external hard disks or USB keys):
  • IOUSBMassStorageClass.kext
  • IOFireWireSerialBusProtocolTransport.kext
You may have delete or rename the directories again after a system update because an update may restore the drivers. After removing the drivers, reboot to make sure the hardware is disabled.