Lost my administrator password in winxp

Posted on 2003-03-21
Medium Priority
Last Modified: 2010-04-11
When we turned on our computer, before starting Windows, a black screen appeared, mentioning "WINDOWS\SYSTEM32\CONFIG\SYSTEM is missing or corrupt".
I tried to solve it with the Windows XP resolve console, according to instructions at Microsoft site.
I've made some changes at the console, such as: moving files as System, Software,Sam, Security, Default to a temp folder, and afterwards it was already possible to access Windows logged as administrator, in the safe mode.
We were not asked any password to enter Windows, but, for instance, if I logged out, it was impossible to re-enter, because I was asked a password I did not have.
The problem is that I knew my password, and apparently when I worked in such files, the password was lost and I do not know how to recover it.
I believe I have passed all necessary information, but if you need some more, please read the Microsoft instructions text, in address below, which I have used to proceed this.
I need to recover my password, and I thank you indeed for any help you could give me.
Question by:felipecastro
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Accepted Solution

Jandler earned 300 total points
ID: 8182046
you might find the following link useful

xp is built on nt technology so this might apply

microsoft provide some support also

Expert Comment

ID: 8185304
following this link
Please note that after downloading this and installing it onto a disk. Reboot the computer and follow the onscreen instructions. When you goto set the admin password set it to * this will leave the admin password blank. Save changes and reset the computer and take the disk out. When xp boots type administrator for the login and leave the password field blank. Click ok and you should be in.

Expert Comment

ID: 8185687
yeah, since this is an XP system you will have to sweat worrying over the features built into the system to protect it from having the sam changed.. im sure the other programs listed are fine, but, they cost $$$
try this one
It is either this one, or the newer version (some digging on google will yeild it) that will be the one that works for XP and Win2k w/SP3 w/o disturbing the syskey mess.

Expert Comment

ID: 8192151
use jandlers second link - it is FREE and works the best afaik
LVL 57

Expert Comment

by:Pete Long
ID: 9779451
Windows  Password Recovery

Try the following,

First: Are you sure yove forgotton it? Try just hitting return (in case there is no password), Then try all the password you would usually use
remember passwords are CaSe senSiTive so try with the caps lock on and off, or capitalise the first "Letter"

NB. All these tools, and links are to third party tools and involve directly or indirectly changing the registry. I accept no responsibility for their use.

Your passwords are held (encrypted) in your registry and in youre "restore" directory. These tools edit one or more of these locations from a boot disk

Arm yourself with a blank (clean) Floppy Disk

Ive used this one on XP and it works


Or try the following

This link will download software that creates a Linux Boot floppy that will let you change Passwords.



Using this link you will have to download the Image writer then the boot disk image



Or try This one from Sunbelt



This ones NOT free but Its what I use



Offline NT Password & Registry Editor, Bootdisk


Windows XP / 2000 / NT Key is a program to reset Windows XP / 2000 / NT security if Administrator password, secure boot password or key disk is lost.  ($195.00)

Heres some further reading

How to Log On to Windows XP If You Forget Your Password or Your Password Expires


Windows XP Security - The Big Joke
FIX for above

Good Luck! PL

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