How to Find the Administrator Password

By Diana LaRose

Many people only rarely use the administrative account on their computers. They often create the account password when they first set up their computers. However, they may not be required to use administrative privileges for a considerable period of time. Because the administrator account is generally used so infrequently, it's easy to forget your administrative password. You may be able to recover or reset the password, but you may have to reinstall your operating system to fix the problem.

Step 1

Windows 2000, Windows 2003, and Windows XP users only: Log in to your computer using a null (blank) password. These versions of Windows have a built-in administrator account that does not have a password. Reset your administrator password from "User Accounts" in Control Panel.

Step 2

Run a password-recovery or password-reset utility on your computer. These utilities are generally available free of charge.

Step 3

Reinstall your operating system. Create a backup of your files, insert the installation disk and then run the setup program. Reset your administrator password when prompted.

Tips & Warnings

  • Running a password-recovery or password-reset tool on a computer other than your own is illegal.