I have encrypted my D drive using the BitLocker drive encryption system and I don't remember where I have saved the recovery file, I think I saved it in D drive. Now my drive is locked and I don't remember the password. Or I mistyped the password or something now I am unable to unlock my drive and I have lots of important data in my drive.

The hacks I have used: Using "manage-bde" command and saving the recovery file in the USB drive, this hack is not working because when I click on "Enter Recovery Key" Option it doesn't show the USB drive option.

I have also used "manage-bde -protectors -add d: -TPMAndStartupKey E:" command but it gives an error because of the locked status.

My question is; Is there any other way to unlock my drive? Please help.

  • 3
    If you're using a Microsoft Account the recovery key should be there. If not then there's nothing you can do. If encryption was easy to bypass there would be no point in using, don't you think? May 11, 2021 at 12:10
  • 3
    If you don’t remember the password or you don’t have the recovery key, there is absolutely no solution, your data is permanently encrypted with no way to decrypt it. If the drive was currently unlocked you could have disabled or suspended BitLocker protection. However, in its current state, you will have to figure out the password before that can be done so you can save the recovery key again
    – Ramhound
    May 11, 2021 at 12:30

2 Answers 2


My question is, Is there any other way to unlock my drive?

There isn’t. If there were, encryption would be pointless.

So your only chance is to keep trying different passwords. However, I suggest you look again for the recovery file, because if I remember correctly you cannot save it on the drive that you’re trying to encrypt.



manage-bde -protectors -get d:

This should output information about which key protectors can be used to unlock the drive.

For example:

Volume D: []
All Key Protectors

External Key:
  ID: {0078C5E8-8D72-44C7-B113-C644FCC2B91D}
  External Key File Name:

Numerical Password:
  ID: {98580AC5-F95D-4CA4-B237-8F7987939A3E}

  ID: {1722F5FF-B676-4550-9EDA-4284688EEC48}

As you can see, I have a user-defined password protector, a numerical password protector (recovery password), and an external key protector.

To unlock with a user defined password, enter your password at the prompt after running this:

manage-bde -unlock d: -pw

To unlock with a numerical 48 digit recovery password (replace with your actual numerical password):

manage-bde -unlock d: -recoverypassword 123456-123456-123456-123456-123456-123456-123456-123456

If you don't know your numerical recovery password, Microsoft might have saved a backup to your Microsoft account (check here).

From the output of the manage-bde -protectors -get d: command, you might have noticed the reference to an external key file (0078C5E8-8D72-44C7-B113-C644FCC2B91D.BEK). If you know where this file is, you can use it to unlock the drive:

manage-bde -unlock D: -RecoveryKey e:\0078C5E8-8D72-44C7-B113-C644FCC2B91D.BEK

These .BEK files are marked as 'hidden' and 'system' by default, so they typically won't show up in explorer or other directory listings without some modifications. They are typically dropped in the top-level of an external drive. If you lost the file, you can search (for example an E: drive) using powershell or cmd (searching sub-directories just to be thorough):

Using powerhsell:

Get-ChildItem -Recurse -Hidden -System -Filter *.BEK -Path E:\

Using command prompt:

dir /s /a:hs e:\*.bek

If you suspect your hard drive is corrupting data or dying, you can try using repair-bde to clone the data to a new drive (assuming you have some key-protector data to unlock the drive).

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