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Long story short, someone repaired my brother's computer and set a password on his account, now we can't get in and can't contact the person who set the password.

Is it possible to create a Windows XP user if I have access to the windows partition, from a linux partition or pendrive, for example TinyCore?

Thanks for any pointers!

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There are a couple of good answers, and I think which one you choose depends on a few things -- if you already have linux installed or if you have access to another account. Depending on your setup, there are no less than 3 paths of least resistance in the answers below. – Code Bling May 21 '11 at 22:15
up vote 4 down vote accepted

Well, there's this, which is for the Administrator.

You'll need to install chntpw and mount the Windows FS. Go to WINDOWS/system32/config.

Issue su -c "chntpw SAM" (or sudo, if that's your thing) and reset the password with the * (asterisk) character.

Reboot as the Administrator, do whatever you need to do, and change the Administrator's password back to something you'll remember.

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Yeah, this is they way to go. With linux already on the machine this takes about 1o seconds, not including boot time. A windows password is more like a speedbump than a locked gate. – Blomkvist May 21 '11 at 20:19
@Blomkvist "A windows password is more like a speedbump than a locked gate." That statement is completely irrelevant as it is just as easy to reset a linux password from a LiveCD. – Bandit May 21 '11 at 22:02

ophcrack will give you the password used for the account. Burn it (it's a live CD), boot it and you're done - it won't write to the disk at all, just read it and crack the password already being used.

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First thing you should try is booting up in safe mode. It usually gives you access to an account named "Administrator" which usually does not have a password set.

If that doesn't work, just reset it using the Ultimate Boot CD. The tool is called something like "NT Offline Password Changer." In addition to being able to reset the password, you now have a CD full of useful tools.


Also, The NT Offline Password Changer tool usually doesn't work if you try to change the password. Instead, blank the password (always works in my experience) and then change the password inside of windows.

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If you have access to any account with administrator privileges you can recover the password entirely within Windows itself.

Hit the Windows key and type Computer Management. When the new window opens, look in the tree on the left under Local Users and Groups and then Users. You should be able to see the account there. Right click on the account and choose Reset Password....

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