How to get admin access on Windows 8.1 with a lost admin password?

Mark Kiser
Mark Kiser used Ask the Experts™
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I have a windows 8.1 laptop using a windows account to login. I reset the password through windows live and am able to login to the site. My laptop will not accept the password. How can I force the laptop to sync with the new password I set online? Is there some way I can enable the admin account and delete or reset the password?
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Bartender_1Microsoft Network Administrator

Commented:
Can you connect it to an ethernet cable connected to the internet?

In order to update the password, it needs to be able to communicate to the internet.
If you can't connect wirelessly, due to an inability to log in, you should be able to connect using an ethernet cable.

Hope this helps!

Bartender_1
Mark KiserIT Manager

Author

Commented:
I show to be connected via wireless and ethernet and have tried with only one or the other enabled but still haven't had any luck.
Bartender_1Microsoft Network Administrator

Commented:
Are you certain this is a Microsoft account, and not a local account?

Bartender_1
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Mark KiserIT Manager

Author

Commented:
It is an email address for the login, so I think so. How would I confirm?

Commented:
Use Method 2 of this page. http://www.chntpw.com/reset-forgotten-microsoft-account-password-windows-10-8/
Side effect is, that it WILL be converted to a local account.
Bartender_1Microsoft Network Administrator

Commented:
Do you have an alternate account on this system?

If so, go into the accounts in the control panel, and look at this account. If it is a local account, it will say so below their name, if it is a microsoft account, it will show their email address below their name.

If you do not have another account on this system, then you should be able to tell when you use the wrong password to try to log into this account.

If it is a local account, it will continue to tell you "The password is incorrect. Try again.”
If it is a Microsoft account, it should say “That password is incorrect. Make sure you’re using the password for your Microsoft account. You can always reset it at account.live.com/password/reset.”

Bartender_1
Mark KiserIT Manager

Author

Commented:
Bartender_1 - I can't see the account info through the control panel because the alternate account I have is not an admin. I did go through the reset process and I can login to that account through the live page so I know for sure that the password is good. It just won't take it through the windows login.
I did confirm it is telling me “That password is incorrect. Make sure you’re using the password for your Microsoft account. You can always reset it at account.live.com/password/reset.”
Mark KiserIT Manager

Author

Commented:
Kimputer - I've never used Rufus or PCUnlocker so it may take me awhile to work through those steps. I will give that a try though.
Bartender_1Microsoft Network Administrator

Commented:
If you can confirm that it is a Microsoft account, and the password is currently valid on their site, then I would next check your keyboard. Are you sure it's entering the password correctly? (No missing, or duplicating keys?)
Mark KiserIT Manager

Author

Commented:
Kimputer - I went through the steps in option 2 and got to select the account I wanted to reset the password on and it informed me that I had to buy the PCUnlocker to do that. I went ahead and did that but I can't get Rufus to create a bootable USB drive. It goes through the process and tells me it is successful. I eject it and boot the other computer, hit F12 and I don't have a bootable USB option. Any thoughts?

I went back and to the trial version and was able to create a bootable USB with it again. It seems there is a problem with the purchased image.

Commented:
If the trial worked and the purchased one didn't, it seems you did everything correctly. Try the full version download link once again (please note if the size is different than from the previous download). If the download now is bigger, it's probably fully downloaded. You can use 7-zip to copy the content to the USB stick (if it's bootable already, no need to do those steps again), overwrite the other files if it asks you to.
Mark KiserIT Manager

Author

Commented:
Kimputer- I tried downloading again from 2 different computers and still could not get a bootable image. I still have not seen a response from their tech support. In the meantime I download Hiren's bootCD and made a bootable USB drive with it. I was able to enable the admin account then I upgraded the users new account to an admin and have copied her data out of the old user account into the new one. As soon as she verifies she has all of her files I'll try to delete that old account. Thanks for your help.

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