windows 7 admin

Posted on 2014-08-09
Last Modified: 2014-08-10
I'm just making sure I got this right. for win7 ultimate, if you don't have the password for the accounts that show when windows first boots up, there isn't a way to get to the admin account. Because isn't the admin account disabled by default and you have to enable it through windows?
I guess there is probably some way to boot to a cd, but I don't want to do some questionable thing, I just want to make sure I'm not forgetting some way to get to the admin account.
Question by:JeffBeall
    LVL 50

    Accepted Solution

    JeffBeall --

    I do not have a good understanding of this either, but having said that, perhaps my comments will help.  (I am sure someone more knowledgeable will correct if I am wrong.)
    When you first set up your PC you set a USER name and made that account an Unelevated User/Administrator.  This is not THE True Administrator account which is seldom used.  You probably were not aware that there was a True Administrator account and therefore did not set a password for it.  
    For a better description of this, see the light blue section at the top of this reference.

    That reference also tells you how to run as True Administrator.  But in fact, that account is seldom used, since it is not completely safe to run as true Administrator.  (If you have a malware attack while running as true Administrator, the malware will be able to have complete control of the PC--more than it would have when you are running as Unelevated User/Administrator).

    I do not know whether you set a password for the True Administrator.  While it is more or less hidden, you can see it by running compmgmt.msc from a command prompt, clicking Local Users and Groups and then Users in the left panel.  The Action panel on the right allows you to take various action steps on each User, such as setting passwords.

    Having said all that, in response to your statement
    ""if you don't have the password for the accounts that show when windows first boots up, there isn't a way to get to the admin account"  

    I am a little confused by that.  If you do not have a password for the accounts that show when you first boot, you will not get into Windows--unless you have set your PC up so that you boot into the True Administrator account for which you have a password.

    So I am not sure whether I have answered your question.

    Here are two additional references you may find of help
    LVL 1

    Author Comment

    jcimarron - that is a good description, and what I meant by ""if you don't have the password for the accounts that show when windows first boots up, there isn't a way to get to the admin account"  
    is that I am helping my cousin and his pc boots to window 7 ultimate - and there are two user accounts showing but he doesn't have the password for them. I remember in winxp, usually you could just put in administrator with no password and that almost always worked. I know in win7 the security is better and thought that by default the administrator account is disabled
    also at my work, everything is win7 in a domain so if the last user shows on the log in screen, you can put your account in, or put in . / then the local admin account to log in locally.
    so with windows ultimate I just wanted to make sure there isn't some easy way to try the admin account when the user doesn't remember their password.
    LVL 50

    Expert Comment

    Is this of any help
    You will have to use option 2--a Linux CD.
    LVL 95

    Assisted Solution

    by:Lee W, MVP
    There's a very simple way of recovering the password for any of the user accounts:

    1. Boot to the Windows 7 boot CD
    2. Press Shift+F10 to get a command prompt.
    3. rename c:\Windows\system32\utilman.exe to utilman.exe.old
    4. copy cmd.exe utilman.exe
    5. Reboot into Windows (NOT the CD)
    6. At the logon screen, press Windows Key + U
    7. From the command prompt, type "net user username password" Where username is the username you want to change the password for and password is the password you want to use.  For example, if the username was "jeff" and you wanted the password "123ABC!@$" you would type net user jeff 123ABC!@$
    8.  close the command prompt window and login as Jeff using the new password.
    Before you leave, delete the utilman.exe that's really cmd.exe and restore the old utilman.exe.old to it's proper name.
    LVL 91

    Assisted Solution

    i always reset the password with nordahl's password reset  tool -  you find it on the UBCD - HDD - Data Recovery section
    LVL 1

    Author Closing Comment

    thank you for the help
    LVL 50

    Expert Comment

    You are welcome.
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