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Know How to Reset SQL Server SA Password

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A discussion about resetting SQL Server SA Passwords

"I have recently lost SA password of my SQL Server database. Although, the database I am trying to connect contains crucial details of my company. Even I tried so many times to reset SA password in SQL but I was unable to get through. Please suggest me a suitable solution that helps to resolve this issue."

System Administrator (SA) has the administrative login for Microsoft SQL Server. At times, some users may forget the SQL Server SA password. Thus, in such cases, users try to reinstall the SQL Server or just drop everything and go. For some reason, if users are unable to recall a new password and Windows account tells that users do not have permissions to change it. 

Therefore, in the upcoming section, we will discuss several ways to reset SQL server SA password in an absolute way.

Steps to Reset SA Password From MS SQL Server

Go through the following set of instructions by which users can easily reset SQL SA password using SSMS. Let us have a look:

Step 1: First, go to the Start icon, select All Programs and then, Microsoft SQL Server 2005. Now, click on SQL Server Management Studio Express.

Step 2: After that, you need to connect to the local default instance of SQL Server using Windows Authentication.

Step 3: After connecting you can either select SSMS or T-SQL for changing the SA password. With the help of SSMS, go to the Security node, expand Logins and then, right- click on SA (security administrator) log in to change password properties.

Step 4: Next, you have to enter the specific password in front of Password and Confirm Password area and then, press OK button

Automated Solution to Reset SQL File Password

If the above-stated method gets failed, users can take help of a reliable third-party tool. The name of that application is SQL Password Recovery tool. It is designed to reset unknown as well as empty passwords from the SQL database file. 

It permits a user to reset multiple user passwords within Microsoft SQL Server. With this utility, users can reset the password of any type or length without any data loss. Moreover, there is a need to install SQL server on the local machine to retrieve the password easily. The working steps of the tool are discussed below:

  1. Download and install SysTools SQL password reset tool on your machine

  2. Select Browse option provided to "Select (master.mdf) file" and then, load the master.mdf file.

  3. Next, choose the SQL version for the selected MDF file. Make sure to select the correct version if you have selected the wrong version, then it may lead to inconsistent behavior.

  4. The software will scan selected MDF (Master Database file) file and shows the scan completion window, once you have completed the scan process. Press OK button

  5. The software will list all end users that were created in MS SQL Server. Password column contains two values like Unknown and Empty.

    • Unknown: For this, you have the password and database will be encrypted.
    • Empty: For this, you do not want a password for the username. In fact, you can simply log into the account without entering a password.

  6. Select the particular user whose password you wish to reset and click the Reset button

  7. The software will prompt you to back up these two files i.e., Master.mdf and master.ldf before continuing

  8. Click on Reset button to proceed

  9. Now, Place the master.mdf on SQL Server (Default location) then launch the SQL Server and connect to the database without being constantly interrupted by the password restriction.

Final Words

In the above discussion, we have discussed a complete solution to reset SQL server SA password using SSMS (SQL Server Management Studio). Along with this, we have suggested a reliable third-party tool, i.e. SysTools SQL Password Reset tool. It is one of the best solutions that will help to reset both user and administrator passwords within the SQL server. Also, we have explained the complete working steps of the tool in a proper manner.

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by:Éric Moreau
advertisement to paid products is accepted now?

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Expert Comment

by:Éric Moreau
It is really time that the team spends time identifying articles in a different way in the search filter result, and identity even more those coming from vendors!

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by:Andrew Leniart
Hi Éric,

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