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How to Reset Windows Password with Chntpw Disk

Chntpw disk is one kind of password recovery discs for Windows 8.1/8/7/Vista/XP/2000 and Windows server 2003/2008/2012. It could be burned into CD or USB with Offline NT Password & Registry Editor. Chntpw disk reset Windows password by finding Windows automatically, and modifying SAM file.

Now see how Chntpw disk reset Windows password in details.

Step 1: Download latest Chntpw boot disk from pogostick.net/~pnh/ntpasswd/cd140201.zip.

Step 2: Burn boot disk into CD-ROM or USB drive, to create a Windows password recovery disk.

Step 3: Set locked computer boot from Chntpw disk, USB or CD-ROM.

Step 4: Computer boots from recovery disk successfully, and Chntpw startup.

start chntpw boot disk

At first, you would see the information and driver option information. Do nothing with the driver option, leaving program automatically select. And at the end of information, shows several steps we have to go through in following Windows password recovery.

- Automatic search for Windows installations
- Select which Windows install to change (if more than one)
- Then finally the password change or registry edit itself
- If changes were made, write them back to disk

Step 5: Select the disk where the Windows installation is.

Please select partition by number or                                                   
q = quit
d = automatically start disk drivers
m = manually select disk drivers to load
f = fetch additional drivers from floppy / usb
a = show all partitions found
l = show propbable Windows (NTFS) partitions only
Select: [1]

select windows installation disk

Step 6: Select Path and Registry files

Keep the default and press Enter to go on. The next screen will tip that select which part of registry to load user predefined choices. Select [1].

select windows registry files

Step 7: Select password reset or edit registry

select windows password reset

“chntpw Main Interactive Menu” appears, select [1] to “Edit user data and passwords”. All of local users on this machine will be listed. You may see more users here than in the overly user-friendly control panel.

select windows user to clear password

The users marked "ADMIN" are members of the administrators group, which means they have admin rights, if you can login to one of them you can get control of the machine. Type user number you want to reset its password and press Enter.

On “User Edit Menu”, choose “Clear (blank) user password”. With the command, user password would be cleared.

clear windows admin user password

After clear Windows user password, type [q] and press Enter to exit "User Edit Menu".

quick windows password reset

And then select [q] and press Enter to quit editting Windows user.

quick editting windows user

Step 8: Writing back Windows changes

Follow prompt and answer “y” on “Writing back changes” screen. Only changed files of the registry would be actually written back.

save windows user information changes

If you forgot something, you may run Chntpw disk again, else press CTRL + ALT + DEL to reboot computer.

complete windows password reset with chntpw boot disk

If it doesn't work on Windows password reset sometimes, please see Chntpw doesn't work on Windows 8 how to do.

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