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How to Hack a Win2K Hard Drive

Posted on 2004-09-08
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Last Modified: 2010-04-14
I want to be able to boot a computer normally that a former employee set up outside the domain.  I don't have the administrator password, but was able to pull the drive out of the computer and can access the data (as its in FAT32).  Does anyone know a way to override the security to change the password for the administrator account while its slaved on another computer that is part of the domain and then put it back in its normal case and then boot the computer with the password of my choice?

Thanks!
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Question by:vivekpara
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by:Yan_west
ID: 12010174
I don't think this respect the EE guideline.... "Breaking into" is not something very legal if you ask me...
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by:vivekpara
ID: 12010270
I'm the systems administrator...and the user set up the computer without my "supervision".  Its ours...and he neglected to leave the passwords for it.

So, I'm not using the information for any illegal purposes if thats the concern.

Thanks!
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by:Yan_west
ID: 12010370
I got the awnser, waiting for the community support to tell me if it'S ok to awnser.. don't wanna get wacked :)
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griessh earned 500 total points
ID: 12010399
Yan_west is quite right ...

Since the system is accessible for you (FAT32) I suggest you copy the data you are interested from that HD to safe place. Then you just reinstall W2K the way you need it.

This is the cleanest way for you and for EE and won't take too much more time than hacking and cracking and cleaning up the mess  :-)

=====
Werner
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by:vivekpara
ID: 12010426
I knew that might be the answer...and I had that solution...but I was hoping for a more elegant hack of the system.  I was hoping to spend 5 minutes not 45 on reinstalling the system.

Sigh!  I do appreciate the help, all.  Glad to see everyone does respect security, though.

Gracias, and Good Night!
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by:Fatal_Exception
ID: 12010431
Put it back in the original case and use Lophtcrack to reset the password...  

or use one of these suggestions:

http://www.experts-exchange.com/Operating_Systems/Win2000/Q_20876897.html

FE
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by:Yan_west
ID: 12010435
I got one, should have waited a bit before accepting, got something alot simpler.. just waiting for community to tell me if it'S ok.
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by:Yan_west
ID: 12010440
Bleah, being honnest doesnt pay lol..
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by:Fatal_Exception
ID: 12010456
Yes...  you do not need to go through all that hassle..  Not that we do not respect security, as most of us are Admins of one sort or another...  The internet is rife with crack utilities, and most of the experts here know how to do this...

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by:Fatal_Exception
ID: 12010487
Got that right Yan....  :)

When I first started posting here, I was very hesitant to help with these questions, but found that most experts would help as long as it was not obvious that the user was doing something he should not be doing...  As you know, it is fairly easy to see what the user is up to..  And since it is FAT32 anyway, there is no way to keep a user from getting the data off...  :)

FE
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by:Yan_west
ID: 12010502
Right.. lol.. I'll remember that in the future :)
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by:vivekpara
ID: 12010536
If you still have that answer, Yan, I'd be happy to post the question again and award you the points.  Always good to have the solution for the future (though I intend to NEVER allow installs by users again).

Otherwise, thanks again.
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by:Yan_west
ID: 12010542
Get the HD back in the machine.. and use this linux boot disk, it allows you to reset whatever password you want on a machine for any user account.. on NT/2000/XP

http://home.eunet.no/~pnordahl/ntpasswd/
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by:Yan_west
ID: 12010547
I used this utility several time, always with success..
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by:griessh
ID: 12010555
You can deal with that issue however you think is appropriate. My concern is that all the answers are accessible on the Internet and I just refuse to post the tools needed to get access to protected PCs (in one way or another) to every kid on this planet :-( This should be something we Admins keep for ourselves.

To the PC we are talking about: we have a policy in our company to re-install any PC that is handed down to another employee. The PC could have a virus, spyware, private information etc. It's just safer and more predictable this way.

=====
Werner
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by:Fatal_Exception
ID: 12010688
griessh..  I commend you on your comments, as you are correct in your thinking, both in putting the info out and in re-installing that system...  But as you probably know, if you google for 'password reset' you will find the link that Yan posted earlier...  

The way to properly setup a network involves creating unbreakable passwords.  Meaning taking the LMHash out of the mix, using a minimum of a 15 char password or password phrase...  If this was done, we would not even be talking about a password hack as they do not work without the LMHash...

FE
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by:Fatal_Exception
ID: 12010700
And.. thanks for the comment ee...  we do so love the mods..!!  :)
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by:vivekpara
ID: 12011823
Thanks, Guys...

Didn't think about the ramifications of how I framed it.  I figured I was legal...therefore it be okay.

Got access to my system and our sensitive files.  Thanks to all involved...you saved me from the unemployment line!!!

=)
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by:Fatal_Exception
ID: 12012824
:)
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