Issue with Windows 8.1 on Dell Inspiron 3521 (no administrator account)
Posted on 2016-11-08
I'm currently troubleshooting an issue with a clients Dell Inspiron 3521, where there is no administrator account. Upon turning on the computer it attempts to boot then brings you to the repair menu. Seems simple, but they do not have an administrator account or a backup to restore to.
If you try and do any of the repair options, you are prompted that an administrator account is needed. Is there a workaround?
My thoughts at this point, as time is not on my side, were to wipe the drive and reinstall everything from scratch. Only issue with that is the client does not have any of the disks that came with the computer. Also trying not to send Dell more money for a factory reset.
Notes: I have pulled out the HD and can access all the files. From this I was able to gather all the docs and pictures the client wanted, but could I also change any files or extract any files that could give me admin rights and/or make the reinstall painless, without having to track down all the right drivers etc.?
..Also I attempted to wipe the drive before and my systor drive duplicator/eraser could not pick up the drive.. not sure if it's relevant.
Any help is greatly appreciated and you'll have to excuse my ignorance if I am missing any obvious clues.