How can I reset my Windows 10 password without a password reset disk?

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In summary, a person's laptop requires a password after four years of not needing one, and there are a variety of ways to recover forgotten passwords, including using a password recovery tool like Ophcrack, booting from a USB drive with Knoppix, or using a password utility included with Windows.
  • #36
You will still be able to recover from this, albeit somewhat more laboriously. Am I correct in assuming that you do have the BIOS password that you used Ophcrack to set? Try hitting ESC at startup and then F10 to enter the BIOS setup ##-## you should then be prompted for the BIOS password, which you recently set, and when you enter that, you should see the BIOS setup ##-## if you don't see that, please tell me what happens.
 
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  • #37
sysprog said:
You will still be able to recover from this, albeit somewhat more laboriously. Am I correct in assuming that you do have the BIOS password that you used Ophcrack to set? Try hitting ESC at startup and then F10 to enter the BIOS setup ##-## you should then be prompted for the BIOS password, which you recently set, and when you enter that, you should see the BIOS setup ##-## if you don't see that, please tell me what happens.
Yes, I have, I put it in and keep hitting the F10. Some times, I get into the Command mode, but I have no idea what to type into direct the cpu to boot from USB, I think that the road block for me.

Thanks
 
  • #38
I tried again from power off and hit ESC key right away many time, it still go to Power-On Authentication.
 
  • #39
What do you get if you enter the BIOS password and then wait for a response without hitting any keys?
 
  • #40
If you get to a command prompt, you can try rstrui.exe to launch System Restore, and from there choose a Restore Point from before you encountered the password problem. Please note that you should use System Restore only with a reliable power source, because if it gets interrupted, it can leave your machine in an obnoxious state. If rstrui.exe doesn't work, please let me know ##-## something will work.
 
  • #41
I took a few pictures...with camera! 1 shows the power on manu, 2 shows entering password, 3 show the option. I suspect one of them might go there

But I am going to try retrui.exe first
 

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  • #42
That looks good.

If you want to get rid of the BIOS password, you can go to the last option on the 3rd screenshot, then navigate to a Security tab, and from there to a Change BIOS Administrator Password option, where you can enter and confirm a new password of nothing (just hit enter when prompted to enter the new password and when prompted to confirm it) Then hit save and exit saving changes.

Also from that 3rd screen, you can hit F9 to get boot options, and from there, you can select the USB device.
 
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  • #43
I tried F9 I got these two options, neither one going anywhere. Just gone to choose safe mode options and no matter what I did, it boot to ask me the password that failed.

I have not been able to get to command prompt yet.

I really appreciate you patience.

Thanks

Alan
 

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  • #44
To get the USB device to be listed when you hit F9, you'll first have to go into the BIOS Boot Options menu. You should from there verify that both 'legacy' and UEFI are enabled. You can also set the USB device to be first in the boot order. If you get stuck, please send more pictures showing where you encountered a snag ##-## BIOS screens vary, and my HP machine BIOS screens look somewhat different from yours.
 
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  • #45
jedishrfu said:
Best I can offer are some things found on the internet:

https://www.lifewire.com/free-windows-password-recovery-tools-2626179

https://www.howtogeek.com/howto/29694/how-to-crack-your-forgotten-windows-password/

Lastly, it's common for folks to write it down somewhere likely forgotten. Perhaps under the keyboard or sent via email somewhere or using some mnemonic way to remember it.
Hi
I ran Ophcrack from howtogeek. It didn't work. But now every time I boot, even if I hit ESC and F12 or F10, it will go into Power-On Authentication page. I set up the password and everything, but it will not fix anything. Now it is blocking me from trying a new way. Do you know any way to uninstall the Ophcrack and back to normal start up where I can hit F10 and go to command mode. I am stuck, I went around and around and around and going no where. Sysprog is very kind to give a lot of time to help, but I am just stuck on this and can't get pass this. I must have turn off and on the laptop over 100 times trying everything already. No matter what path I went, still ended up the same place.

Thanks
 
  • #46
Rather than focus on the password issue why not try to backup your files to an external drive first and then reinstall windows. Remember circumventing password protections is a risky business and you may well lose access to your critical files.

Many vendors are moving towards the idea of encrypted disks which will make getting your data in the future far more difficult and risky to impossible,
 
  • #47
jedishrfu said:
Rather than focus on the password issue why not try to backup your files to an external drive first and then reinstall windows. Remember circumventing password protections is a risky business and you may well lose access to your critical files.

Many vendors are moving towards the idea of encrypted disks which will make getting your data in the future far more difficult and risky to impossible,
That needs to get pass the password first which I can't. I already backed up files recently, that's not even a big deal. I am just trying to salvage all the favors and existing bookmarks, and also gain back the use of the laptop. Also a few of my schematic, pcb layout and simulation programs.

At this point the only way I know of to get files from the SSD drive is to physically take the drive out and hook up to another computer to read as a hard drive which is a lot of trouble. Like I said, I just backed up the critical files 3 days ago.

I even hurry and bought a new 10th gen I-5 laptop with 256G SSD drive already and will be here on Friday. I just want to try to save this computer and hopefully do not have to wipe the it and start from the beginning.
 
  • #48
I don't know what else to say. Passwords are there to thwart the bad guys except when we forget it and then it thwarts everyone.

I've always favored the zero-based proof sign-on scheme but everyone is reluctant to use that approach. However, with people's private info getting hacked it may not be viable anymore.
 
  • #49
Given that you know the BIOS Administrator password, and that you can get to the 'Startup Menu' screen, you should be able, using the last (i.e. the 'Update System BIOS') option on that screen (arrow to it) to get into the BIOS settings. From there you can get rid of the BIOS password, and you can adjust boot device settings Please be persistent. If you get bewildered in the BIOS screens, please post pictures. If you make changes but are not sure about them, you can exit without saving changes, and then try again.

1590617499210.png
 
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  • #50
I hit F11 in the manu, I went to HP recovery Manager as shown in the picture. I did NOT click NEXT. I think this is going to wipe my drive and restore to when I first bought it. Everything will be gone. Is this true?
 

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  • #51
Yes. That's exactly what it would do. I don't see why you're so reticent regarding going into the BIOS settings as suggested.
 
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  • #52
Please go into the BIOS, so that you can do a fix, instead of a 'factory reset'.
 
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  • #53
sysprog said:
Yes. That's exactly what it would do. I don't see why you're so reticent regarding going into the BIOS settings as suggested.
I can't get in, I think I was wrong
sysprog said:
Yes. That's exactly what it would do. I don't see why you're so reticent regarding going into the BIOS settings as suggested.
I cannot get into the bios. Let me try more. I can't even get into the command mode.
 
  • #54
I Went to boot option in 6 and checked from USB drive as shown, I save that and it gave me the option of how to boot up as shown in 7, I chose safe mode with command prompt. It went right back to the problem page shown in 8 wanting the password. Back in the circle! I've been trying and trying.

I think a made a mistake, I never got into command prompt, it's was just some writing on a black screen and I thought it's in command prompt mode.

I'll keep trying, thanks for the patience.
 

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  • #55
yungman said:
I can't get in, I think I was wrong

I cannot get into the bios. Let me try more. I can't even get into the command mode.
What happens when you navigate to the 10th entry on the startup screen and hit Enter? Please show the first screen that you get upon doing that. What was the screen immediately prior to your 'Power on 6' 'Boot Options' screen (it's whatever screen the back arrow at the upper left is inviting you to return to)? On the 'Boot Options' screen, you should try checking 'UEFI Boot Order', and then see whether F9 shows the USB device.
 
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  • #56
I spent almost an hour trying to do different power on and after entering password sequence to record down the outcome, I yet to get back to the boot up option choosing USB. I am going nowhere so far. I'll try again later to get to 6 above.
 
  • #57
sysprog said:
What happens when you navigate to the 10th entry on the startup screen and hit Enter? Please show the first screen that you get upon doing that. What was the screen immediately prior to your 'Power on 6' 'Boot Options' screen (it's whatever screen the back arrow at the upper left is inviting you to return to)? On the 'Boot Options' screen, you should try checking 'UEFI Boot Order', and then see whether F9 shows the USB device.
Yes, I think I got into the boot option and booted with Hiren's BootCD. I can even get into Command Prompt. Before I mess up anything, tell me what to do next.

There is Control panel, but function seems very limited, I looked at installed program, I can't see all the programs I have before. It almost seems like it's a new windows that is not the original windows I had.

Thank you for the help, at least I got somewhere now. Let me know what should I do next.

Many Thanks

Alan
 

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  • #58
That's good. The OS that you're running is a mini-Windows, soecifically a Windows PE (Pre-installation Environment) that loads from the USB device. Did you look at the https://turbofuture.com/computers/Using-Hirens-Boot-CD-to-Create-Admin-Accounts article and try to follow the instructions? Do you see an icon for an HBCD Menu? The icon should look like a wrench on top of a screwdriver. The follow article is simpler than the turbofuture one ##-## it references an older mini-Windows but the procedure is still the same: https://www.dvtitsolutions.com/blog...move-any-windows-password-with-hirens-boot-cd ##-## please post if you can't find the menu or you're encountering other difficulties, or if everything works, and you're able to fix the machine. Screenshots are helpful.
 
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  • #59
Yes, I just remember you gave me the turbofuture.com link, I just print it out to read it. I think I am going to quit now, it's been a long day on this. I work on this tomorrow.

Again thanks so much for your help. I'll post back tomorrow.
 
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  • #60
I'm pleased to see that you're en route to a solution.
 
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  • #61
Good morning, I read through the turbofuture.com link, it is very different from the desktop I have, as you can see in the picture 10. There is no "WRENCH" Icon on my desktop as you can see. But I looked around, in the UTILITIES folder circled in RED, UTILITIES->Security->Passwords this is the screen I got as shown.

I went into NT Password Edit as shown in 11, There is a user name "Rooster" which is my user name for my laptop where it want me to put in the password. I highlighted Rooster and click open and got into page shown in 12. I put in my new password and click SAVE CHANGES. Is this it? That I change my password already?

I am afraid the next step is to power down the computer and try!?:):nb) ! I got in so far, don't want to lose it!

I know now that I get the Command Prompt, there got to be a way now. Can you teach me how to use the Command Prompt to do this?

Thanks

Alan
 

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  • #62
I gather my courage, unplugged the USB ( Hiren's), restarted the computer and.......

IT WORKS!
:partytime::partytime:👍👍


Thanks you so much for your help Sysprog. I really thought this computer is a goner.

How do I delete whatever Hiren programs and files in the computer? Or when I unplug the USB, it's gone?

Again, thank you so much to have the patience to hold my hand and guide me through this painful process.

Alan
 
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  • #63
Yaaaayyy!

Hirens doesn't leave any stuff around ##-## just unplug the USB device ##-## most of the utilities will run without having to boot from the USB device ##-## you can just plug it in while you're running your normal OS, and navigate to the utilities from there ##-## please be careful ##-## some of those very helpful utilities can have drastic effects if they are accidentally misused.

To eliminate the Windows login password requirement, you can run the NT Password Edit again and just hit Enter in the new password and confirmation fields; similarly, you can do that from the BIOS Settings Update to eliminate the BIOS password ##-## if you would like assistance with that, please post again.
 
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  • #64
I actually wrote down what I did step by step so I can reference back in the future. I bought two more USB drives, I am going to repeat this with an old laptop I have. I am sure it's going to be a lot more simple as when power up, just hit ESC will do it instead of what I had gone through became of running the Ophcrack. I wonder how can I totally eliminate the power up login and all the steps on the laptop?

How do you know all these, where can I learn more about computers? Is it IT class or books?

I am retired, I was an EE and manager of EE before. I was here a few years back helping in EE part of Physics Forums for a while. But I am not that into computers. This make me think about learning more about PCs and laptops. I am the IT of the house...Me...IT! I usually know better not to get in trouble, but my big boss ( wife) is a different story. I ended up have to fix her laptop. This last episode started with she kept putting in the wrong password on her email and now the account keep kicking us out every two hours. She want a new email address, so I created a new account. Then I made the old account forward email to the new account to make it easy to set up the address book and everything else to transition to the new account. That's when I got this problem. I must have done something with my computer accidentally during the process to cause the password problem.

Do I need to learn C++ or C# to be good with IT?
 

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  • #65
yungman said:
I actually wrote down what I did step by step so I can reference back in the future. I bought two more USB drives, I am going to repeat this with an old laptop I have. I am sure it's going to be a lot more simple as when power up, just hit ESC will do it instead of what I had gone through became of running the Ophcrack. I wonder how can I totally eliminate the power up login and all the steps on the laptop?
After your login, to eliminate the Windows User Account password, you can Navigate as follows:

Control Panel > User Accounts > Manage Accounts > Change an Account > Change the password > Change password

If you click on the 'Change password' button at the lower right, without putting a value in the New password or Confirm new password fields, you'll make the User Account no longer password protected.

To eliminate the BIOS password, you can go to the Start Menu Screen, and hit F10 (BIOS Setup):

1590705738670.png


To do this you have to have the password in the first place. If you don't have it, you can hit Enter (or some other incorrect password)3 times and you'll get a 'halt code'. HP Customer Service can use that code to enable you to reset the password.

But you're not in that situation, because you have the password. There are 2 BIOS passwords: an Administrator password, and a Power-On password. To eliminate them, you'll need the Administrator password.

From the BIOS Settings Screen, go to the Security tab. From the Security Menu, select Power-On Password.

Do NOT select the Administrator password this time, because if you screw up the Power-On password, you can fix that with the Administrator password, but you can't fix a screwed-up Administrator password with the Power-On password.

Change the Power-On password to nothing, confirm that by putting nothing in the Confirm Password field, hit Enter and Save Changes. Then exit saving changes.

Verify that you don't get prompted for the Power-On password during startup.

Assuming that all goes well, you can then do the same for the Administrator password.

If you're not confident in something you just did, you can exit without saving changes, then go back in and select Restore BIOS Defaults. That too will remove the BIOS passwords, but it will also remove things like UEFI and boot device settings. If you contemplate doing that, please post again.
How do you know all these, where can I learn more about computers? Is it IT class or books?
For me, mostly its been manuals, technical articles, textbooks, utilities, problem-solving, experimentation, reading and writing code, and asking teasonably good questions.

I started when I was a pre-teen back in keypunch card days, and kept up with it, but you can attain a good deal of proficiency without such a set of advantages.

IT encompasses a very broad range of disciplines. You have make some decisions about what to focus on. Otherwise you can be quickly overwhelmed by the sheer volume of information.
I am retired, I was an EE and manager of EE before. I was here a few years back helping in EE part of Physics Forums for a while. But I am not that into computers. This make me think about learning more about PCs and laptops. I am the IT of the house...Me...IT! I usually know better not to get in trouble, but my big boss ( wife) is a different story. I ended up have to fix her laptop. This last episode started with she kept putting in the wrong password on her email and now the account keep kicking us out every two hours. She want a new email address, so I created a new account. Then I made the old account forward email to the new account to make it easy to set up the address book and everything else to transition to the new account. That's when I got this problem. I must have done something with my computer accidentally during the process to cause the password problem.

Do I need to learn C++ or C# to be good with IT?
It seems like you've had a great career and contributed a great deal. You don't need to be a programmer to be a good technician. It wouldn't hurt to learn a scripting language at least well enough to read and interpret and maybe tweak existing code. I think that C++ is a good thing to learn if you want to write full-scale software.

If you want to improve your Windows proficiency, I think that perhaps oddly enough, it would be helpful if you were to learn some Linux. Unlike MS-Windows, Linux doesn't overmediate and over-conceal its workings.

There is a great deal that you can learn about Windows, Linux and other IT matters, just by searching and reading, but you'll learn faster and more if you set up a 'sandbox' machine and start experimenting.

You could start by using the machine that you just rescued. A lightweight but not perfectly adequate precautionary safeguard would be to first create a restore point so that you can return to your current system state via running rstrui.exe if you hose something and are having trouble unhosing it:

How to Create a System Restore Point in Windows 7
  1. Choose Start→Control Panel→System and Security. ...
  2. Click the System Protection link in the left panel.
  3. In the System Properties dialog box that appears, click the System Protection tab and then click the Create button. ...
  4. Name the restore point, and click Create. ...
  5. Windows alerts you when the restore point is created.
To be safest, you should clone your internal HDD to an external USB HDD that is the same size or larger. Then if you have to you can boot from it and then clone from it onto the internal drive.

Play around conservatively with some of the utilities on the Hirens menu. If you can, you should stay away from BIOS settings if you're unsure about what they might do.

If you care to you can start experimenting with settings:

How to Create a Windows 7 System Settings Collection Folder
  1. Create a folder on the Windows 7 Desktop. Right-click on empty part of the desktop, then select New > Folder.
  2. Rename the folder. Rename folder name to: anyname.{ed7ba470-8e54-465e-825c-99712043e01c}
  3. Access the settings collection by double-clicking on the folder icon.
And please be sure to have some fun along the way.
 
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  • #66
Ha ha, I am too happy right now to read your post as I have to concentrate to read. I am too happy to do that right now. I'll read it tomorrow. Thanks for the information.

I am actually reply to you on my computer that was locked out!:partytime::partytime:

I am getting all the files ready to load into the new laptop I bought and will be here tomorrow. I really did not put a lot of hope I can fix this computer. Now I have two good ones.

You got me interested in learning more about computers now.

Thanks

Alan
 
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  • #67
yungman said:
How do you know all these...?
sysprog said:
mostly its been manuals, ..., and asking teasonably good questions.
That's got to be the most appropriate typo I've ever seen! 🤣👌
 
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  • #68
It seems Hiren's Boot CD does not support Windows 10 very well. correct?
 
  • #69
rneyade said:
It seems Hiren's Boot CD does not support Windows 10 very well. correct?
Hirens is a set of utilities. Some of them can damage your system if they are used incorrectly. Always make a complete backup before making system changes.
 
  • #70
sysprog said:
Hirens is a set of utilities. Some of them can damage your system if they are used incorrectly. Always make a complete backup before making system changes.

thanks for the tip. I though it could be safe to use it as many people recommend it.

BTW, I tried to use the Password Edit utility but failed to change my windows 10 password.
 

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