Everything you do in Windows is stored somewhere. Much of it is in the Windows registry, which can be changed in the registry editor. However, it's important to understand just how sensitive the registry editor is before you start trying to work in there. In fact, even one slip-up in the registry editor can seriously damage your operating system. For that reason, experts recommend backing up the registry before you start making changes. But you can search the registry at any time without making changes, as long as you know how to get in there. One of the many things you can look up in the registry are your passwords.
Find Windows 10 Password in Registry
You can conduct a Windows reset password in registry editor, but you'll first need to find out what the password is. To find Windows 10 password in registry, you'll first go to the registry editor. Do this by pressing "Windows" + "R." Then you'll type in "regedit" when you get the "Run" dialogue box. Press "Enter" to open up the registry editor to find Windows 10 password in registry. To get to the password, navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon and scroll down to "DefaultPassword." When you double-click on that, a window should pop up that reveals the stored password. This same process will work with Windows 8 and 7.
Change Password Using Registry
There are easier ways, but if you're interested in doing a Windows reset password in registry editor, it's probably because you've been locked out. If you can't even get in to find your administrator password in Windows 7 regedit or Windows 10 regedit, you can reset your password without even being logged in. You'll just need a bootable disk that has a setup to allow you to find an administrator password in Windows 7 regedit or Windows 8. Just boot from the disk and press "Shift" and "F10" when you get to the Windows setup screen. The command prompt window will pop up. Type in "regedit" and "Enter," then click on "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE." Click "Find" and "Local Hive," then select DRIVE:\Windows\System32\config\SYSTEM. Replace the drive with the drive where your Windows installation is located and give your hive a name. Go to the following key HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\X\Setup, replacing "X" with the hive name you just chose. Edit the "cmdline" parameter and type "cmd.exe" where it asks for "Value Data." Change the "Setup Type" to "Value Data 2," select the hive you name you chose, then "Unload Hive." Close the registry editor and wait for your computer to reboot. Eject your bootable media and type "net user" in the command prompt. You'll then be able to set a new password by typing "net user login new_password."
Change Windows 10 Password
The Windows reset password in registry editor is actually the more difficult way to reset a password. You can find a Windows 10 password in the registry and reset it, sure, but if you're past the login screen, the easiest way to find and change the password is simply to go to Microsoft's password recovery website. Follow the "I Forgot My Password" suggestion to recover your password. This will take you into the recovery process, and it also works if you're trying to reset your Windows 7 or 8 password. Instead of trying to find your administrator password for Windows 7 in regedit and reset it, you can recover it in a few simple steps.
- Search Enterprise Desktop: Windows Registry Editor (regedit)
- How-To Geek: How to Backup and Restore the Windows Registry
- TunesBro: Where Are the User or Admin Passwords Stored in Windows 10/8/7
- Winaero: Reset Windows 10 Password Without Using Third Party Tools
- How-To Geek: How to Reset Your Forgotten Password in Windows 10