Recover BIOS/CMOS Password Using Free CMOSPwd Utility
BIOS is a kind of software situated as a chip in the motherboard of your computer. BIOS been present in the computer from the pre-initial stage of it's use even before you turn on your computer. The password you configure for your BIOS is required by you whenever you turn your computer on in order to boot your installed operating system.
If you can't remember a BIOS or CMOS password, you're pretty screwed because you won't be able to even boot up Windows. Earlier, I had written about a way to reset Lenovo ThinkPad BIOS password using a couple of different techniques.
I recently ran across another program that you can use to recover a CMOS or BIOS password. CMOSPwd works under Dos, Windows 98, Windows NT, Windows 2000, Windows XP, Windows 2003, Windows Vista, Windows 7, Windows 2008, Linux, FreeBSD, and NetBSD.
The program basically decrypts the password that is stored in CMOS, which is used to access the BIOS setup. Now this program won't work with all BIOS out there, but here are the ones it will work with:
- ACER/IBM BIOS
- AMI BIOS
- AMI WinBIOS 2.5
- Award 4.5x/4.6x/6.0
- Compaq (1992)
- Compaq (New version)
- IBM (PS/2, Activa, Thinkpad)
- Packard Bell
- Phoenix 1.00.09.AC0 (1994), a486 1.03, 1.04, 1.10 A03, 4.05 rev 1.02.943, 4.06 rev 1.13.1107
- Phoenix 4 release 6 (User)
- Gateway Solo – Phoenix 4.0 release 6
- Zenith AMI
If you are lucky enough to have one of these, you may be able to recover the password easily. Using the program requires a little bit of the command prompt, so make sure you are familiar with that before using it.
Basically, to run it, go to the command prompt and use CD command to navigate to the directory where you stored the file. At the command prompt, type in CMOSPWD and press Enter key.
You'll get a list of possibilities which you can compare against your BIOS manufacturer.
To recover the password, you need to note the value to the right of the BIOS you have installed and then you have to type in cmospwd /m[xxx] to execute the module. If that doesn't work, you can kill the BIOS using the /k switch.
However, DO NOT kill the CMOS if you are recovering the password for a laptop. On laptops the CMOS password is usually stored in a EEPROM on the motherboard, so you need a EEPROM programmer to retrieve it.
Since using the program is a bit complicated, make sure to read the instructions provided beforehand. But if you need to recover Windows login password, then you can get Password Recovery Bundle to recover your lost or forgotten Windows admin/user passwords.