How to Unlock a Computer Without a Password Reset Disk
A locked computer can result in dead-end frustration, potentially costing hundreds of dollars in repair bills. Unlock your computer without the aid of a password-reset disk by accessing the default Administrator account from Safe Mode and unlocking your computer via console commands. This can generally be done in minutes.
Restart the computer.
Press and hold down the "F8" key as the computer is booting. Release "F8" when a list of options appears and select "Safe Mode With Networking" from the list.
Click on the "Administrator" account.
Press the Start button on the lower left-hand side of the screen.
Type "control userpasswords2" in the text field that appears and press "Enter." Uncheck "Users must enter a username and password" and restart the computer. It will be unlocked.
If this does not resolve the situation, press the Start button and chose Control Panel from the menu that appears. Click the arrow in the Control Panel to bring down a drop-down box and choose "All Control Panel Items." Navigate to "User Accounts" and then "Manage Another Account." Choose your account and select the option to edit it. Select "Remove the password." Repeat for every account accessible through the Control Panel.
Tips & Warnings
- If these instructions do not restore access, consider a third-party software program such as Windows Password Reset (see Resources). Always download unfamiliar software through a trusted site such as CNet or Download.com
- Create a password-reset disk as soon as possible after you regain access to your computer.