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Windows: How to reset the administrator password?

I have been given an ex-business laptop to clean up for home use. The laptop was previously on a business domain, but for home use I don't want it to be on a domain. The laptop is running Windows XP professional.

I changed the computer properties so that it doesn't log onto a domain anymore, but unfortunately I restarted the computer before I added a new user. Now, I am faced with a logon screen (not the welcome screen), and I know one of the usernames, but not the password. I also have no idea what the Administrator password is on the local computer.

I am unable to log back onto the original domain (where I have administrator privileges), because the local login screen does not present any options for specifying the domain. I also can't seem to change it back to a domain computer, since I have to login first (which I can't do). Rebooting in safe mode still asked me to login, so that's no help.

How would I go either getting this machine to log back onto a domain, or finding some way to log back in with Power User / Administrator privileges?

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marked as duplicate by Bobby, Ivo Flipse Jun 24 '10 at 12:17

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

    
    
@Bobby - not really, my goal was more to change it (temporarily) to logon to the domain again, but being able to create a new user alleviated my problem. Strangely enough, not one of those questions appeared in my search or when I typed the title. –  a_m0d Jun 24 '10 at 10:51

2 Answers 2

up vote 1 down vote accepted

Use Kon-boot.

http://www.darknet.org.uk/2009/06/kon-boot-reset-windows-linux-passwords/

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thanks, this worked for me. –  a_m0d Jun 24 '10 at 10:53

I would firs try booting Ophcrack and letting it run to the end to see if it can recover your password. If that does not work, you can try resetting the admin password with the Offline NT Password and Registry Editor. These options can help you gain access to the local system accounts (Not the domain accounts). These options will not work if the drive is completely encrypted (which businesses usually like to do) in which case the only option I know of is to re-install.

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