Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I'm a secretary and my boss set up my new Windows 7 OptiPlex 7010 (Dell) computer for me while I was on vacation (he does not remember setting any "administrator" password). We are a small office so there is no system password set, either.

I've used it for 6 months, all the while I couldn't access network drives, etc., without an administrator password. It was annoying, but I could still get my work done.

Finally, on a slow day I took it upon myself to "fix" the problem, and in all my infinite wisdom, I managed to change my user account from administrator to standard user, so now I really can't do anything. I can't download or install any programs, move or rename files, etc.

I tried the Dell suggested solution, but the BIOS tells me there is no password set, so it has to be a Windows 7 problem. All the solutions I have come across require an administrator password to let me do them.

What can I do to find out the admin password so I can use my own darn computer!? Is there a default admin password?

share|improve this question
Have your boss reinstall Windows you kept good backups right? –  Ramhound Oct 25 '13 at 21:10
add comment

2 Answers

There is still a built-in Administrator account, which is disabled by default. However, when there are no other administrative accounts on the system the built-in Administrator account may become enabled. Go into Safe Mode and see if Administrator appears on the Welcome Screen. If it does, log in and use it to switch your own account back into an admin account.

If Administrator doesn't appear on the Welcome Screen, enable it as follows:

If you have a Windows 7 installation DVD (not a recovery DVD) you can boot the system with it. Select the default language, then choose "Repair your computer". Then select "Command Prompt". At the command prompt type:

net user administrator /active:yes

Remove the DVD, reboot the computer, and log into the built-in Administrator account.

If you don't have a Windows 7 installation DVD (only have a recovery disc), Dell may have given you the Windows 7 System Repair option (not a System Recovery!) on the diagnostic menu. This diagnostic menu is the same one where you can choose Safe Mode. To get to this menu, repeatedly tap the F8 key as the computer is starting up.

After you have fixed your account, log into it and disable the built-in Administrator again for security purposes:

Press Start --> Search box --> type: cmd

When cmd appears in Results above, right-click it and choose "Run as administrator". Now you will get the command prompt. At the command prompt type:

net user administrator /active:no

For reference, this information was taken from answers.microsoft.com but edited by me.

share|improve this answer
add comment

There is a tool called Offline NT Password & Registry Editor.
I have used it several times and would highly recommend it.
Below is a link to an easy to follow tutorial with screenshots that should be able to help you remove the administrator password.


Good luck!

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.