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In my previous question:

I forgot the Windows 7 password on my own computer, I used the trick described in Resetting Your Forgotten Windows Password (

Boot from the Windows 7 repair ISO.


copy c:\windows\system32\cmd.exe c:\windows\system32\sethc.exe Use the Sticky Keys feature of the log in screen (now the command prompt) to execute:

net user Admin MyNewPassword I kept the file there in case I ever forgot it again.

A client of mine asked if I could do the same for him, and he also has a PC with Windows 7 Professional x32.

I followed the same steps as on my computer. The command of step 2 says it was successful, but when press Shift five times to trigger Sticky Keys, the regular message for sethc.exe opens up.

I tried entering the command of step 3 directly from the repair ISO. This claimed to be successful as well, but the password was not changed!

What I'm doing wrong?

I have realized the problem is bigger than just not being able to change the password, any changes made to files using CMD don't actually change... and I can't figure out why.

In regard to the password, I tried using several "password reset" ISOs and they also look like they work but don't actually change anything.


Copyright (c) 2009 Microsoft Corporation.  All rights reserved.
C:\Windows\system32>net user Administrator NEWPASS
The command completed successfully.

Password doesn't change.

share|improve this question
Perhaps there are two instances of Windows installed on the computer, and you're manipulating the wrong one? – Harry Johnston Jan 28 '13 at 23:52
It would seem so, but as far I can tell there is not. When I run windows recovery it only show once instance of windows installed. This is frustrating – Jack ' Jan 29 '13 at 7:54
After copying cmd.exe over sethc.exe, you need to exit the recovery environment and boot back into the HDD installation of Windows. What method did you use to exit the recovery environment? (Put another way, how did you reboot the computer?) – Harry Johnston Jan 30 '13 at 20:06
I think I clicked "restart" in the repair disc menu, or I may have just turned the computer off and back on without the repair disc inside. I did the same thing to the other computer and it worked. Is there another way to boot into HDD installation of windows? – Jack ' Jan 30 '13 at 21:29
Changes made on the HDD might not stick properly if you just turn the computer off without explicitly shutting down the recovery environment. Clicking "restart" in the repair disc menu should be fine, and if changes to the HDD aren't sticking in that case the computer might have some sort of security software installed, or perhaps a physical problem with the drive, or a malware infection (though I've never heard of one behaving that way) or something else unusual is going on. – Harry Johnston Jan 30 '13 at 22:29

I would recommend you use the Offline NT Password and Registry Editor to reset your Windows password.

share|improve this answer
Thanks for the response. I have tried that and like the other programs, it claims to work but does not! – Jack ' Jan 28 '13 at 16:44

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