Vista Home main login password

A client has forgotten his pw (sigh)

1. is there any timeout/lockout for guessing?  (thus he can try alternate spellings, etc. indefinitely)
2. Does a System Restore disk wipe out user files or just restore system files?
3. If he has to start from scratch and reinstall Vista, will that wipe out user files?

thanks
willsherwoodAsked:
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ploftinConnect With a Mentor Commented:
1. I don't think so.
2. Performing a system restore using the System Restore utility will not affect the Documents folders. Documents should not be affected.
3. Reinstalling Vista will not erase user files - as long as he does NOT choose to format the drive during installation.  The current Windows and Program Files folders will be saved in a folder called C:\Windows.old.
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Tom BeckConnect With a Mentor Commented:
Does the system have a recovery partition? On some systems that have it, if you boot into the recovery partition, you get a choice of complete (destructive) restore or just OS restore (saves user files).
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John HurstConnect With a Mentor Business Consultant (Owner)Commented:
My recollection is that Vista won't let you try passwords indefinitely, but I have not tried this for some time.

With respect to (2) and (3), (3) will definitely wipe out user files. With respect to (2), a system restore in Vista (no CD) will not wipe out user files. However, vendors define things differently and done from a CD, it may well take out your user files. DO backup everything, and if there is any doubt, hard drives are cheap. Consider doing a complete reinstall on a different drive. In any event, back everything up. ... Thinkpads_User
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willsherwoodAuthor Commented:
excellent, many thanks
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☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
There's a temporary lockout after a number of failed attempts but it's reset on boot.
A System Restore will keep the account (and password) settings
Reinstalling Vista will remove all their files & settings
Have they tried to boot into safe mode - if the privileged Admin account there has no password set they can reset their own account settings from that.
 
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☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
Wow - that one closed fast!  :)
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John HurstBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Thank you, and good luck going forward. ... Thinkpads_User
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willsherwoodAuthor Commented:
thanks Masq - very good info, wish i could have given you points too.
appreciated!
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☠ MASQ ☠Commented:
:-)
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