Forgetting your Windows administrator account password can be quite a headache. Not only will a lost admin password mean you’ll be unable to access your main Windows account, it also means you won’t be able to access any areas restricted to just administrator access. Sure you can reset administrator passwords by reformatting but then you’ll lose all your data on the computer save for any backups. This method works for versions of Windows including XP, Vista, and Windows 7.


This method will help you recover administrator passwords for various versions of the Microsoft Windows operating system. You can recover and restore Windows administrator passwords using a piece of software and a little patience. The great thing about this process is that you won’t lose data or have to start over from scratch. 


To start you’ll need to get online from another computer. This other computer must have a CD drive capable of reading and burning CD-R discs. However note that if the computer which has the password forgotten has other user accounts you can access the internet through these other accounts if you know the user password.


Once on the internet you’ll want to download Ophcrack, a very well known and free password cracker specifically for Windows systems. A password cracker is used to help recover and restore forgotten administrator password information. Use a search engine to find a viable download of Ophcrack and download the ISO file to the computer desktop.


Insert a blank CD-R into the CD drive and burn a copy of the Ophcrack ISO to the blank disc. It may take a short period of time for the burning to complete. When finished remove the disc. Turn on the computer you are doing the admin password recovery on and immediately insert the CD into the drive. What will happen next is that the computer will ask if you want to boot from the CD drive.


Select the option in DOS to boot from the CD-ROM drive and wait for the boot sequence to initiate. Ophcrack will begin running automatically and attempt to recover the Windows administrator password and user name. 


Have a pen and paper handy during this process as the administrator user name will appear on screen along with the password. You’ll want to write this information down for future use. 


Wait until the program says it is complete. Then restart the computer and remove the CD. Wait for Windows to boot up normally and log in as the administrator with the provided user name and password information provided from the cracking software. 


Note that this information is provided solely for reference purposes and using password crackers on computers or accounts that you are not authorized to access may be a violation of your local and federal laws. Use this information only for your own computer or computers for which you are the administrator. Use at your own risk.

Also you can learn about booting Windows in Safe Mode as you may need to do so to reset a forgotten administrator password: How to Boot Windows in Safe Mode.