Can you help me sort out my login issues with a user account that only opens in Safe Mode?

gary thompson January 22, 2011
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I have a Windows XP PRO QUAD drive. First I could not get into my computer, so somebody told me about when password box shows, type in Administrator and then hit enter key twice, which I did.

Well, that was fine, but my mail was empty, Mozilla Firefox wanted me to set up all my addons again. I could not understand where everything had gone. My Norton started having problems updating.

It was a nightmare all because I wanted auto logon through Tuneup Utilities. I had a tech from Norton antivirus help me from their end and fix their problem, but I still could not work out where everthing had gone.

Now everytime the computer boots up and opens up it opens with a long rectangle square – it’s not the right password – and behind that is the login box. As I click ok on the two boxes on the right hand side of the screen, two small admin squares appear. I had tried to wipe my logon details off, but being an old button pusher from way back you can’t expect much else, eh! Well, now I push both and they go into safe mode, but the bottom one has all my mail, music, software and I cannot start it in normal mode and even if I could all my gear is in safe mode.

Could somebody please help this old bugger out please, gazza!

  1. Aibek
    January 25, 2011 at 6:43 pm

    Hi Gary,

    Did you manage to get into your account using the recommendations above?

    Didi you try system restore option and revert your PC back to an earlier time when there were no such issues?

    Let us know


  2. Charles East
    January 23, 2011 at 6:29 pm

    just from your description, it would appear several issues may be playing here. 1- you have some registry corruption issues from a failing drive, a virus (norton fails more often than it should) or other software screwup that affected the bootup process, forcing you into safe mode. The administrator account is not normally accessible under normal bootup and is reserved for safe mode use, (unless this was originally overridden by the PC mfgr). If you are NOT in safe mode, then you might want to try rebooting into safe mode (press the F8 key prior to the Windows XP load screen) Then go to the control panel and open the user accounts link. See if the list of users includes administrator, guest and your account. If your account is listed, then click it and see if you can change the password. If this does not work, then you may need the assistance of a tech with a password removal tool. I have such a critter in my arsenal, but its not something I can provide online... Its a CD that must be booted from and run to remove passwords and make the account accessible again. Since you logged in via Administrator and your settings are are not present, then it is very apparent, you are not logged in on your original account.

    January 22, 2011 at 8:14 pm

    Hello there. Log on in safe mode and try to disable the Tuneup utilities auto logon.
    Probably two admin accounts show because one is the original account you setup and the other one is the local administrator account. The local administrator account can only be used in safe mode. If you try to log on to that account in normal mode it gives you and error. Probably the Tuneup utilities auto logon is logging you to the local administrator account. Try to log on with the account where you have your email, software, etc., and change the name of the account so that it is easier to recognize.

    In case you want to try and disable the local administrator account by using the local policies, follow these steps:

    1.- Log on to your system with an account that has administrator privileges.
    2.- Right click on desktop >>pick properties >> click on Desktop Tab >> click customized desktop >> click on General Tab >>check mark My Computer >> click ok
    3.- On desktop right-click My Computer and select Manage.
    4.- Expand the Local Users and Groups node.
    5.- Click on Users
    6.- Double-click Administrator.
    7.- In the General tab, select Account is Disabled.
    8.- Press the OK button
    9.- Close the Computer Management console.
    10. Log off the account and then log on again.

  4. James Bruce
    January 22, 2011 at 5:17 pm

    You rproblem isnt entirely clear, but if you can logon as Adminstrator again, follow these instructions to reset or change the password of your original account:

    Reset the password.
    Click Start, and then click Run.
    Type control userpasswords2, and then click OK.
    On the Users tab, click the name of the user account that you want to reset the password for, and then click Reset Password.
    Type a new password in the New password box, and then type the password again in the Confirm new password box, and then click OK.
    Restart the computer, and then try to log on to Windows XP again.