Thursday, 23 June 2016 17:25

    How to reset Windows admin password in safe mode

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    When you are stuck in safe mode because the admin password was not set up (only your live MS password which is not accessible when the network is off)

    If you have forgotten your local admin password, you won't be able to open Command Prompt as administrator in Windows 10. So you will need to up the Command Prompt with the help of a Windows 10 setup disk.


    Step 1: Prepare a Windows 10 setup disk

    If you have no any available Windows 10 setup disk (also called installation disk), you can instantly create one by burning a Windows 10 ISO file to USB or CD-ROM drive with the help of another computer.

    Step 2: Boot locked computer from setup disk

    Insert the Windows 10 setup disk (USB or CD/DVD-ROM) to your computer where you will reset Windows 10 local admin password, and make computer boot from the disk.

    Step 3: Replace Utility Manager with Command Prompt

    (1) After computer boots up, you will see Windows Setup window. There press Shift + F10 keyboard shortcuts to bring up a command prompt window.

    (2) In the command prompt window, execute the following two lines of commands, which will replace the Utility Manager on Windows 10 sign-in screen with Command Prompt. Note: Replace the d letter with your system drive letter. Press Enter key after typing each line.

    execute the two commands

    replace Utility Manager with Command Prompt

    (3) After the two commands are executed successfully, pull out the Windows 10 setup disk and restart the computer.

    Step 4: Reset Windows 10 local admin password with Command Prompt

    (1) After computer restarts and comes to Windows 10 sign-in screen, click on the Ease of Access icon in the lower-right corner. This will bring up a Command Prompt window, if the previous steps went right.

    (2) In the Command Prompt window, type the password reset command: net user <username> <password> and hit Enter to set a new password for your Windows 10 local admin.

    Execute command to reset local admin password

    (3) Once password reset is completed, close the Command Prompt and then you can sign into the admin with the new password.

    Alternative: Make another local admin with command prompt to access Windows 10

    You also can access Windows 10 built-in administrator or create another new local admin to sign into Windows 10, and then open the Command Prompt to reset your forgotten local admin password. The previous three steps will be invariant. The difference is the Step 4.

    (1) After clicking on the Ease of Access icon to open the Command Prompt window, type net user Administrator /active yes and hit Enter so that you can enable the hidden administrator in Windows 10.

    activate built-in administrator

    Or create one new local admin by the following two commands.

    Add new local admin with the two commands

    Add new local admin account

    (2) Then sign in Windows 10 with the built-in administrator or the newly created local admin.

    Choose one admin to sign in Windows 10

    (3) Press Win + X to open Command Prompt.

    (4) Type password reset command: net user <username> <password> in the command prompt window to reset password for your Windows 10 local admin. Replace the <username> with your password-forgotten local admin name, and replace the <password> with your new password.

    reset forgotten local admin password

    Step 5: Put back the Utility Manager

    For your system safety, you’d better put back the Utility Manager after you complete password reset for Windows 10 local admin. If not, others who click on the Ease of Access icon will open Command Prompt window and change your password or make other changes to your system. In order to put back the Utility Manager, just need the steps as below:

    (1) Reboot your computer from the Windows 10 setup disk again.

    (2) When you get to the Windows Setup screen, press Shift + F10 to bring up Command Prompt window. Then execute the command: copy c:\utilman.exe c:\windows\system32\utilman.exe. That’s it. Restart computer and everything is OK now.

    Read 11465 times Last modified on Wednesday, 03 August 2016 14:32
    Fabien Bello

    Fabien Bello has been working in web and app develoment since 1997. He has held numerous positions from game developer to head of creative and product development for major firms such as Xerox, Gala Coral Group. Fabien continues contributing to online community, owns and manages several websites as well as offering consultancy to all size businesses.


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