If ever, you were to lose or forget your Windows login password, here are a few steps that may help you deal with the situation.
If you’ve forgotten your Windows password and you’re on a domain, you should contact your system administrator to reset your password.
If you’re not on a domain, you can reset your password by using a password reset disk or by using an administrator account.
How to create a password reset disk:
- Insert your removable media.
- Open User Accounts by clicking the Start button , clicking Control Panel, clicking User Accounts and Family Safety, and then clicking User Accounts.
- In the left pane, click Create a password reset disk, and then follow the instructions. Make sure you store the password reset disk in a safe place.
How to Reset your Windows password:
The steps that you should follow will vary, depending on whether your computer is on a domain or a workgroup.
If your computer is on a domain:
Because your computer is on a domain, only your network administrator can reset your domain password. To reset a password for a local user account (an account that provides access to the computer, but not to the domain), follow the steps below.
- Open User Accounts by clicking the Start button, clicking Control Panel, clicking User Accounts, clicking User Accounts, and then clicking Manage User Accounts. If you’re prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
- On the Users tab, under Users for this computer, click the user account name, and then click Reset Password.
- Type the new password, confirm the new password, and then click OK.
If your computer is in a workgroup:
If you forget your password, you can reset it using a password reset disk for your user account (or the password reset information stored on a USB flash drive). If you don’t have a password reset disk, you’ll need to get someone with an administrator account on the computer to reset your password for you.
- If you enter the wrong password when you attempt to log on, Windows displays a message that the password is incorrect. Click OK to close the message.
- Click Reset password, and then insert your password reset disk or USB flash drive.
- Follow the steps in the Password Reset wizard to create a new password.
- Log on with the new password. If you forget your password again, you can use the same password reset disk. You don’t need to make a new one.
If you forget the administrator password and don’t have a password reset disk or another administrator account, you won’t be able to reset the password. If there are no other user accounts on the computer, you won’t be able to log on to Windows and will need to re-install Windows.
It is therefore imperative that you create a password hint when you create your password! Your Password hint appears below the password entry box, after you make an incorrect entry and then click OK. This hint can help you remember your Windows login password.
You can also try some freeware Password Recovery tool like Ophcrack, Offline NT Password & Registry Editor, Cain & Abel, John The Ripper, LCP or PC Login Now. Please do confirm that they work on your version of Windows.
Utilities To Recover Lost Passwords of Windows, Internet Explorer, Windows Live Messenger, etc may also interest you! Also see this post on Recover lost or forgotten Windows password and regain access to computer.