Earlier in the month, Karl posted a tip on how to recover your Windows XP administrator password by using the installation disk. However, he forgot to mention a few other easier ways how to reset Windows XP password without having to go through the installation process.
1. Use Alt, Control, Delete & The Windows Welcome Screen
If you have set your computer up to login via the Welcome Screen, there may be a slight chance that you will be able to login as the Administrator. Depending on who installed XP on your computer, there may or may not be a password on the Administrator’s account.
So simply press Alt+Control+Delete twice. You will be presented with a login box. Click OK to login without typing any user name or password in. If that doesn’t work, type in ‘Administrator‘ into the username box and press enter. If that doesn’t work, so far, you are in bad luck.
If you are able to log in, simply go to the control panel, go into User Accounts and change your password.
2. Login To Another Account & Reset The Password Through User Management (XP Professional Only)
This will only work if you have Windows XP Professional, and you can login with an account. Right click on My Computer and select Manage. Then select Local User and Groups > Users. Right click on your username and select Set Password. Follow the prompts and set yourself a new password.
If you can’t get into Device Manager because you don’t have a user account to get into your computer, you can try opening Device Manager from another computer. Right click on where it says Computer Management (Local) and choose Connect to another computer“¦ once you are logged in to another computer within your home network.
Then enter your computer IP or Name. For example 169.168.x.x, 10.1.1.x or \\DesktopPC. (replacing x.x with your computer IP address. You can also click on Browse > Advance > Find now to browse for computers on your network.
If you are granted access to the remote computer, follow the steps I mentioned above and set a new password. If not, continue reading.
3. Reset The Password Through Safe Mode & Command Prompt
If the above steps have failed so far, you can try and boot into Safe Mode. To do this, press F8 while your computer is booting. Once in safe mode, you can try going into the control panel and reset your password. If you can’t, you can try and open up a Command Prompt by opening Run and typing cmd. Enter net user [username] [enternewpassword]. For example, If I want to change my account which is Jack to password abcde, I would type in net user jack abcde and press enter. Your password should now be changed.
4. Use A Live (Bootable CD)
If you are at this stage, and haven’t so far managed to get into your computer, you may want to use a Live Bootable CD. You may want to have a look at the post 3 Ways To Reset A Forgotten Windows Administrator Password and follow those steps.
Alternatively, you can use the Live CD so you can boot into your computer and access the files so you can back them up on an external hard drive or USB stick. If you can’t get into Windows, this is your only option.
5. Remove Your HardDrive, Backup, Format, Reinstall
One final way, and probably a good thing to do if your computer is running really slow, or you can’t get into Windows at all; take out your hard drive, put it into another computer, backup your data, format the hard drive, put it back into the original computer, and re-install Windows. You may want to have a look at The Idiot’s Ultimate Guide to Building Your Own PC for some help taking out your hard drive.
So these are my basic tips if I can’t get access to a computer to a user account in a Windows XP computer. I hope these tips will come in handy.
Do you have any other tips to get access to your computer because you forgot the password? Let us know in the comments.
Image Credit : Max (Tj)