Reset a Windows login password

From a recovery console (from Windows CD or Safe Mode), there is an easy way to change passwords (and do more than this). Works on Windows XP and 7 for sure:

  1. Backup G:\windows\system32\sethc.exe. G is a random letter. As you did not boot from your Windows install, it’s not C. Figure out what is the letter of your drive by yourself. sethc.exe is a program that popup when you press 5x shift, control or alt while in the login prompt.  You can do it by the command:

    copy  G:\windows\system32\sethc.exe G:\sethc.exe

  2. copy G:\windows\system32\cmd.exe G:\windows\system32\sethc.exe

    Say yes when it asks you to overwrite AFTER BEING SURE to have backed up sethc.exe

  3. Boot your windows normally, press 5x the shift key and then you get an administrator prompt!
  4. To reset your password type the command:

    net user your_username new_password

  5. Put sethc.exe back at its place:

    copy C:\sethc.exe C:\windows\system32\sethc.exe

And voila!

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