What do you do when you forget your Windows system password? Forgetting your Administrator password can leave you without access to your system, or worse. This could happen out of honest forgetfulness, the result of idiotic roommates with nothing better to do, or any number of other situations that could result in a total loss of access to your system.
Thankfully, being locked out doesn’t mean you can’t regain control through Windows password recovery software. In fact, all you really need is a USB thumb drive and another computer to create a bootable USB disk on. In many cases, you can reset system password in just a few minutes.
How to Reset System Password on Windows 8, 7, Vista and XP?
The password-resetting procedure can be divided into 3 steps. It is perhaps the simplest solution for you to regain access to your system on Windows 8/7/Vista/XP.
Step 1: Create a System Password Reset Disk
The first thing you’ll need to do is create a bootable system password reset disk. This may require you to grab a thumb drive and use a friend’s computer to do this. Follow the instructions to create a system password reset disk:
- Download the Reset Windows Password package.
- Once you’ve downloaded the package, unzip the download file and you’ll get the CD/DVD ISO image file: ResetWindowsPwd.iso, which you can burn it onto a CD, DVD or USB thumb drive.
- Burn the ISO image to a USB thumb drive using the ISO2Disc tool.
Once the system password reset disk is created successfully, you can then use it to boot your locked computer and perform password resetting.
Step 2: Boot from System Password Reset Disk
Now you need to set your locked computer to boot from the system password reset disk you’ve created. Booting from a USB thumb drive can be done fairly easily using BIOS settings. Every BIOS is a little different, though you should be able to access it using the instructions that appear on screen when you first power up your machine and find a boot order or option to select boot device. Holding DEL or F12 when rebooting can usually get you where you need to be. Some systems are different, however.
If you still can’t figure out how to make your computer boot from USB thumb drive, please refer to this article:
Step 3: Reset System Password
Once you’ve configured the locked computer correctly, plug in your USB thumb drive and turn on the computer. It will boot from the system password reset disk. Once the boot procedure is complete, it will launch the Reset Windows Password program. This is the software you’ll need to reset your system password.
The software allows you to select the Windows SAM registry hive from the drop-down list. It will then display a list of Windows user accounts inside the SAM file. Choose your desired user account and then click on the Reset Password button. It will remove your forgotten or unknown password instantly.
The next step is to unplug the USB thumb drive and restart the computer. You can then log in to your Windows system with a blank password.