Unable to access my rented VPS - "Your account has been disabled. Please see your system administrator"

Hello experts... I rent a Windows VPS from a low-budget outfit on which I've installed Microsoft IIS in order to solely run a very simple PHP script which displays a small web form and executes a Windows EXE file which then generates an online "code" for my users. This has been working fine for some months now, and I only log in to the VPS now and then just to see if everything looks ok. But a few days ago I was unable to log in using my normal password (which I haven't changed). At the log in screen after attempting to log in, it displays the message:

"Your account has been disabled. Please see your system administrator"

I contacted my VPS' tech support and their immediate solution is to re-build my whole VPS - which I really really don't want to do as it took me a long time to set up IIS and the PHP scripts (with the help of another Experts Exchange chap). Support feels that my VPS was hacked and my "Administrator" account was disabled. A funny thing is though - my PHP script/website is still running fine (and to me, that is the main thing). Still though, I can't depend on that being the case going forward, and something definitely has gone wrong with my VPS. Would someone have any suggestions/tricks on how I could re-claim access to my VPS without having to resort to rebuilding it (if at all possible) ?

Thanks
    Shawn

P.S: The VPS runs Windows WebServer 2008 R2
shawn857Asked:
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BembiCEOCommented:
There are either some tools or tricks, if you have root access....
See her to find some methods and hints...
https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windowsserver/en-US/cc3a6a12-66e9-4a06-97fd-2a5c89d627bc/forgot-password-for-windows-server-2008-r2

If you have root access (at least the support should have), there was another trick, but not sure if it still works....

Start from the installation CD, Repair, Console....

In the repair console, goto system 32
Rename Utilsman.exe to Utilsman.exe.bak
Copy cmd.exe and rename it Utilsman.exe
Reboot windows...
On the start page
Click on the Ease of access icon
You get a command promt now
Type net user administrator *
Enter a new password....
Close and log in...
Rename back Utilsman.exe.bak to Utilsman.exe

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shawn857Author Commented:
Thanks for that Bembi... I'm not really sure what you mean by "root access", nor do I know if I have access to it. As of now, I can't even sign in, so I don't have access to anything really. I asked the VPS support if they have root access and offered the suggestions/tricks you gave. All they said is "we are working on it". That was a couple of days ago and I'm still waiting on them. :-(

Thanks
   Shawn
BembiCEOCommented:
Root access means, that you can access the machine, before Windows starts. From some provider you can get empty machines, and they give you access (via a server management tool) like you would sit if front of the machine and you can install your software alone. ILO from HP is such a tool, but provider use usually plex as I know.

As the trick needs an installation cd / source, that you can go into the repair mode and from there on the console. If you do not have such an option, at least the provider should be able to do it as they have full access to their machines.
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shawn857Author Commented:
Okay... surely to god they have root access to their own servers.

I'm waiting to hear back from them....

Thanks
   Shawn
chanderpal singh rathoreMicrosoft Exchange EngineerCommented:
Hi,

It can be easily done from your hosting provider with any password recovery disk or using a windows CD/DVD and it should not take this much long as you are saying.

Hope they will do it for you .

Good Luck!!
shawn857Author Commented:
Thanks Chanderpal... even if, as the error message said : "Your account has been disabled"?

What good is recovering the Administrator password, if the Administrator account has been disabled by whatever hacked my VPS?

Thanks
   Shawn
chanderpal singh rathoreMicrosoft Exchange EngineerCommented:
Hi shawn,

Your hosting provider can do that also as they can add another user to access that, please go through he below link for your reference.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ar-VoO9ogHc

But there is nothing to be done from your side.

Regards,
Chanderpal
shawn857Author Commented:
Thank you Chanderpal, I will tell them this. I think they are kind of stupid over there... and very slow.They just informed me today that they were moving my case to a "senior support person"... ughhh

Thanks
    Shawn
shawn857Author Commented:
I've finally heard back from my VPS support... they now tell me this:

"Shawn,

I have spent a while tinkering with this and had no luck getting the ISO to mount and boot into it for password recovery.
You are welcome to attempt the same from our panel."

... do you think they're being honest, incompetent, or maybe just not trying?

Thanks
   Shawn
BembiCEOCommented:
Mmh, you really want that I comment this...,??
Who else should do it, and I wonder why they should not able to boot from an ISO of CD...

I they can give you access to their administrative level, you may try it, I guess it will be faster than to wait for their actions, but the explanation would not lead me to a high qualified support.
shawn857Author Commented:
They are giving me access to their control panel (although the user/pass they're giving me doesn't work). But once I can log in, is all I need an "ISO" to try and boot from? I don't even know what an "ISO" is...

Thanks
   Shawn
BembiCEOCommented:
An ISO mage is just like a CD-ROM but as a file. ISO files can be directly burned onto CD-RAMs or they can attached to virtual machines or physical machines and work like a physical CD-ROM. There are several tools outside to create bootable ISO files, just google for "create ISO file" and you find several ones.

Also you provider may attach an ISO installation media to the virtual machine or you can create your own from a physical media and attach it to the server.

I'm just wondering what kind of provider you have. I really can not believe that they are not capable to prepare your environment as needed, even if your provider is driven by school-boys.
shawn857Author Commented:
Yes Bembi, I also get the feeling they're school-boys. Anyway, now they have just told me this:

"Let me know the exact ISO you would like to mount, we will do this at our end. And then you can install it further from client area through console. "

My VPS uses Windows Server 2008 R2. What should I tell them for the exact ISO?

Thanks
    Shawn
shawn857Author Commented:
Hi Bembi, are you still with me?

Thanks
   Shawn
shawn857Author Commented:
... you there Bembi?

Thanks
    Shawn
shawn857Author Commented:
hello....?
shawn857Author Commented:
Hi Bembi... are you still with me?

Shawn
chanderpal singh rathoreMicrosoft Exchange EngineerCommented:
Hi,

You can ask for the same version of the OS, it will work.

Thanks
shawn857Author Commented:
Thanks Chanderpal... I will ask them to mount that ISO.

Shawn
shawn857Author Commented:
Chanderpal, they replied with this:

"Please provide the "Windows WebServer 2008 R2" .ISO download link, we will get this mount for you."

Would you know of a download link please?

Thanks
   Shawn
chanderpal singh rathoreMicrosoft Exchange EngineerCommented:
Hi,

Please use the below link for download :

https://www.microsoft.com/en-in/download/details.aspx?id=11093

Thanks
Chanderpal
shawn857Author Commented:
Thanks Chanderpal, I just informed my VPS about that download link. Let's see if they mount it for me...

Cheers
   Shawn
BembiCEOCommented:
HI Shawn,

yea, still here... ;-))) Sorry...
Chanderpal delivered some more information....
I'm just wondering about your provider..., I mean if they offer such services, they should be aware of some really basic procedures... Whenever you got this solved, choose another provider who is worth to called be an provider.... Whatever they have done in their past, it had nothing to do with computers, they should know about such steps, it is even not windows specific....
For an installation ISO you can even use a demo version, you do not need the keys, just the CD or ISO Image. Even they can download a demo themselves from Microsoft sites. They just have to link the CD / ISO to the machine and boot into the console mode... This is the initial process to install any physical or virtual machine, and as a provider they should have done it several times before.
shawn857Author Commented:
I was soon going to attempt to get back in my account using the ISO they mounted for me a short time ago, but a few days ago they just emailed me and told me that they have to move a block of VPS's around because of memory considerations or something. I don't know if this means my VPS will be wiped clean as a result or not. I emailed them enquiring about that and I have yet to hear back. I would still like to keep this question open in case I need more help please.

Thanks
   Shawn
shawn857Author Commented:
Thank you for the help guys, but I just wound up cancelling my subscription with this VPS and moving on. They are just too incompetent and slack.

Thanks
   Shawn
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