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HELP: Need to Boot NT 4.0 to DOS Prompt

Posted on 2013-05-16
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Last Modified: 2016-11-23
In attempts to fix my registry on an old NT 4 server, I've renamed a backup registry file. To my dismay it's asking for the Administrator password, in which i don't have.

So.. either 2 things need to happen:

1- I reset the Administrator password

2- I find/create a bootdisk that will get me to a command prompt where I can rename back the OLD registry file.

To make matters worse....

This is an old DELL Server with NO USB and will only boot from Floppy (1.44) or Hard disk.

I've tried to create a Offline Windows Password & Registry Editor, Bootdisk  but its not finding the drives.

THE GOOD NEWS:

I have another identical server where I could create a boot disk and have access to a floppy drive,
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Question by:Floyd_Droid
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Expert Comment

by:Lee W, MVP
ID: 39173840
The system should boot from a CD - you may have to temporarily install one on an IDE port.

NT4 doesn't have DOS OR a recovery console.  You cannot boot to one.  I vaguely remember some repair options with the boot disks you create from NT4... but it's been a LONG time (why isn't this a VM?)

Your best and possibly only option at this point is to perform a parallel install of another copy of NT4 or 2000 (or 2003) so you can access to the drive that way (assuming the CD idea doesn't work).
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Author Comment

by:Floyd_Droid
ID: 39174422
Believe me this piece of $^&t doesn't boot to CD, in CMOS it only gives 2 options Floppy or HD.
We're in the process of getting this old thing put on a VM... somehow it lost the NIC driver and won't completely recognize if you try to install a new one. (long story). In other words it a huge brick!
I did notice something that "might help" the Password reset tool consists of 3 floppies.. one to boot and other 2 are HD drivers. The downloaded driver files that were zipped need to remain like that when put on floppy. I unzipped them. Hopefully that will reset the password.

I wonder if I can boot with a Win98/Win ME boot floppy?
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Accepted Solution

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Floyd_Droid earned 0 total points
ID: 39176183
I out it figured out.

- 1st of all the registry has nothing to do with saving passwords (I was tired when I entered the ticket and wasn't thinking straight)

I was able to get into Windows through the Diagnostic 4 mode, even renaming things back made no difference.

- Used the Password Reset tool.
** NOTE: The reason why it wasn't working before was:
        a) The two driver disks need to contain the zip files ZIPPED
        b) When I was stuck at the login prompt I couldn't properly shutdown other than cold boot. The Linux program considers the Hard disk as "Dirty" and won't save changes.
The fix is shutting down properly going through the Diagnostic mode.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Floyd_Droid
ID: 39186891
Because i figured it out on my own
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