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Hello does anyone know of a way to remove or reset windows passwords in windows 8. Without logging in to windows first. In Windows 7 I used Hirens but it is not working for Windows 8.

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I am talking about local user account password not Microsoft online accounts like @hotmail.com or domain accounts those can be reset.

The scenario is a computer running Windows 8 with a local only user and the client forgot the password to the only active account. Is there a way to remove or reset that password?

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It seems you will have to wait for a tool like Hirens to be updated. of course its my understanding its already been updated. The process should be exactly the same. Are we talking about Windows 8 Professional or Windows 8 –  Ramhound Dec 5 '12 at 12:06
    
windows 8 pro why? –  Jonathan Dec 5 '12 at 12:24
    
It can make a difference depending on certain factors. –  Ramhound Dec 5 '12 at 12:58
    
Try ntoffline. A crafty little utility you can use to reset any account password on the system as well as enable the local admin account –  Scandalist Aug 25 '13 at 2:01

6 Answers 6

My Windows XP/7 method still works in Windows 8:

http://blog.williamhilsum.com/2011/10/how-to-reset-windows-password-without.html

Basically to sum up the blog post...

  1. Boot in to any Windows CD able to access the hard drive.

  2. Take a backup of any accessibility tool such as on screen keyboard.

  3. Copy CMD.exe to the name of the tool above

  4. Restart and run the tool at login.. You will have launched a command prompt under the System user.

  5. run net user <user> <password> and the password will be changed

  6. re run steps 1-3 to delete the program and restore the real tool.

Done!

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what William is actually saying is the accessibility tool that popups when you click that that icon on the bottom left of the login screen is called "utilman.exe". By renaming cmd.exe to "utilman.exe", when that icon is clicked, command prompt will appear instead and from there you can do 'net user someone *'. The most important part is that the Windows 8 filesystem be read. A windows installer will likely recognize the filesystem. For best results use Windows 8 installer. Stop looking for other 3rd party tools. –  WikiWitz Sep 6 at 14:37

If you want to use USB stick, then you can simply use multiplatform UNetBootin and select ntpasswd it'll download images and create bootable usb flash for you. Or for CD/DVD manually download image from ntpasswd Or you can use sources and integrate to your favorite live distribution.

This distro uses chntpw program that can reset, blank or set password for your accounts. It can even unlock blocked accounts from your Windows station. All offline, it comes even with offline registry editor.

If you will face problem with mounting windows volume. You can manually extract from Windows your SAM, SYSTEM and SECURITY registry files and unlock them on another computer.

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Trinity Rescue. Must-have for any Windows shop.

Far better than Hiren's for SAM modification.

http://trinityhome.org/Home/index.php?content=TRINITY_RESCUE_KIT_DOWNLOAD&front_id=12&lang=en&locale=en

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The newest version of Ultimate Boot CD will allow you to change the password in Windows 8/8.1. That said, there are many good tools listed in the responses here. Find the one that works best for you and go with it.

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Depending on your Manufacturer, there's a key combination or cd that will allow you to access the BIOS during the Booting Time.

From the BIOS, you can access the command line and manipulate passwords.

There are many topics in Microsoft regarding this.

Use the SS64 Reference. The most common way of achieving a password change is through the net user command.

You can use help or /? in your command prompt to get usage help.

Good luck !

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Try booting into Safe Mode with Command Prompt

The key command is net user (at the command prompt!), if I were you I would experiment with 'Net Use' in normal mode first as I find its syntax a bit picky.

Example:
Net user abc p$ssw0rD

Here are more of my ideas which I honed when trying to activate the hidden administrator account. My guess is that this the account that safe mode uses.

http://www.computerperformance.co.uk/win8/windows8-administrator-activate.htm

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