Introduction: Unlock Windows User Account If Your Password Expired or Forgot

Lost the password of the only administrator account on your computer? Windows password has expired but you forgot the original password? Just imagine yourself in such a situation! How to unlock a locked or expired user account without admin privileges? This tutorial will show you step-by-step procedure to unlock Windows 8, 7, Vista or XP user account with a bootable WinPE CD.

Step 1: Make a Bootable CD

Use an alternate PC to download the PCUnlocker ISO image which is a WinPE-based bootable media. The file you downloaded is a zip file that contains the disk image, you will need to extract the image from the zip file (i.e. drag it to your desktop).

Download ImgBurn and install, launch the program. Select the ‘Write image file to disc’ option. Next click the browse option and navigate to the disk image you just extracted. Click Open.

Select the burn to disc icon (Note: This will be greyed out, until there is a blank CD in the drive). The image is very small, it will not take long to burn.

Step 2: Boot Your Locked PC From CD

This procedure uses the boot CD you have just created, for it to work you need to make sure the machine will attempt to boot to its CD/DVD Drive before it boots to its hard drive. (Or it will simply boot into Windows login screen again).

This change in boot order (boot sequence) is carried out in the machines BIOS. When you turn on the machine watch for a message that looks like Press {key} to enter Setup. Typically Esc, Del, F1, F2, F12, or F9. When in the BIOS locate the boot order and move the CD/DVD Drive to the top of the list.

Step 3: Unlock Windows User Account

Once your computer boots from the CD, the entire Windows PE boot image will be loaded into memory. After the booting procedure is complete, you'll see the PCUnlocker program. It automatically searches for your Windows SAM database on your local hard drive, and then show you a list of local user accounts for your Windows installation.

From the list box you can find out which user account is locked out, disabled or password protected. Choose a user account with an expired or forgotten password, and click on "Reset Password" button. The program will remove your forgotten Windows login password, set your password to never expire, and unlock your locked or disabled user account.

Click on "Restart" button and reject the WinPE CD. The computer will reboot and it then automatically log back into your Windows user account without asking for a password!

Comments

author
wuhdth188509 (author)2016-10-13

If you prefer an easy way to reset windows password, then you should use Windows Password Recovery instead. The steps are very simple and there are detailed instructions for each step.

Tutorial: how to unlock windows password with uukeys

author
hemangv (author)2015-11-10

i think u should try with installation disk only

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v-d7gelqQm0

author
DoncoB (author)2015-04-02

http://unlockwindowsphone.net/2015/04/01/how-to-unlock-windows-cell-phone/

unlock windows phone - 100% WORKS!!!

author
gwainavaz (author)2014-11-06

A very nice teaching, you have helped me to achieve more in computer knowledge surely keep the fire burning.

author
liamd792 (author)2014-03-15

i sekect the SAM registry fike but it says "unable to read sam database [X:\WXPE\SYSTEM32\CONFIG\SAM]"

author
petemag (author)liamd7922014-03-15

The X:\ drive is the bootdisk of PCUnlocker. You need to choose the SAM file on the system partition of your local hard drive.

author
mwatson16 (author)2014-03-14

if u interrupt boot, you can enter via safemode

author
petemag (author)mwatson162014-03-15

You're right! In Windows XP, there might be a hidden administrator account (no password) which will display at the login screen of Safe Mode. But since Windows Vista, the built-in administrator account is disabled and it also doesn't allow you to log in under Safe Mode.

author
motions (author)2014-03-14

It's truly amazing people still use windows and think they're secure. I've never found a windows machine that can't be owned.

author
petemag (author)motions2014-03-15

There are also ways to reset forgotten Mac/Linux password. Only use these techniques on your computer or on another person's computer with their permission.To keep your files secure, it's better to use the disk encryption tool such as BitLocker.

author
plasticbiker (author)2014-03-14

The ISO linked here is for a commercial product. There are several opensource products that perform an identical function for free including Cain and Able, Ophcrack and many others.

http://pcsupport.about.com/od/toolsofthetrade/tp/p...