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How to Reset a Windows 7 Password
1 . Insert either your Windows 7 installation DVD or a Windows 7
System Repair disc into your optical drive and then restart your
computer. If you have either on a flash drive, that'll work too.
Tip: See How to Boot From a CD, DVD, or BD Disc or How to Boot From
a USB Device if you've never booted from portable media before or
if you're having trouble doing so.
Note: It's not an issue if you don't have original Windows 7 media
and never got around to making a system repair disc. As long as you
have access to any other Windows 7 computer (another in your home
or a friend's will work fine), you can burn a system repair disc
for free. See How to Create a Windows 7 System Repair Disc for a
1 . After your computer boots from the disc or flash drive, click
Next on the screen with your language and keyboard choices.
Tip: Don't see this screen or do you see your typical Windows 7
login screen? Chances are good that your computer booted from your
hard drive (like it normally does) instead of from the disc or
flash drive you inserted, which is what you want. See the
appropriate link in the tip from Step 1 above for help.
3 . Click on the Repair your computer link.
Note: If you booted with a system repair disc instead of a Windows
7 installation disc or flash drive, you won't see this link. Just
move on to Step 4 below.
4 . Wait while your Windows 7 installation is located on your
5 . Once your installation is found, take note of the drive letter
found in theLocation column. Most Windows 7 installations will show
D: but yours may be different.
Note: While in Windows, the drive that Windows 7 is installed on is
probably labeled as the C: drive. However, when booting from
Windows 7 install or repair media, a hidden drive is available that
usually isn't. This drive is given the first available drive
letter, probably C:, leaving the next available drive letter,
probably D:, for the next drive - the one with Windows 7 installed
6 . Select Windows 7 from the Operating System list and then click
7 . From System Recovery Options, choose Command Prompt.
8 . With Command Prompt now open, execute the following two
commands, in this order:
copy d:windowssystem32utilman.exe d:
copy d:windowssystem32cmd.exe d:windowssystem32utilman.exe
To the Overwrite question after executing the second command,
answer with Yes.
Important: If the drive that Windows 7 is installed on in your
computer is notD: (Step 5), be sure to change all instances of d:
in the commands above with the correct drive letter.
9 . Remove the disc or flash drive and then restart your computer.
You can close the Command Prompt window and click Restart but it's
also okay in this situation to restart using your computer's
10 . Once the Windows 7 login screen appears, locate the little
icon on the bottom-left of the screen that looks like a pie with a
square around it. Click it!
Tip: If your normal Windows 7 login screen did not show up, check
to see that you removed the disc or flash drive you inserted in
Step 1. Your computer may continue to boot from this device instead
of your hard drive if you don't remove it.
11. Now that Command Prompt is open, execute the net user command
as shown, replacing myusername with whatever your user name is
andmypassword with whatever new password you'd like to use:
net user myusername mypassword
So, for example, I would do something like this:
net user Tim 1lov3blueberrie$
Tip: If your username has spaces, put double quotes around it when
executing net user, as in net user "Tim Fisher" 1lov3blueberrie$.
12 . Close the Command Prompt window.
13 . Log in with your new password!
14 . Create a Windows 7 Password Reset Disk! This is the
Microsoft-approved, proactive step you should have done a long time
ago. All you need is a blank flash drive or floppy disk and you'll
never need to worry about forgetting your Windows 7 password again.
15 . While not required, it would probably be wise to undo the hack
that makes this work. If you don't, you won't have access to
accessibility features from the Windows 7 login screen.
To reverse the changes you've made, repeat Steps 1 through 7 above.
When you have access to Command Prompt again, execute the
copy d:utilman.exe d:windowssystem32utilman.exe
Confirm the overwrite and then restart your computer.
Important: Undoing this hack will have no impact on your new
password. Whatever password you set in Step 11 is still valid.
Tips and More Information
Having trouble resetting your Windows 7 password? See Get More Help
for information about contacting me on social networks or via
email, posting on tech support forums, and more.
Minimum hardware requirements for Windows 7
Additional requirements to use certain features:
Windows XP Mode (Professional, Ultimate and Enterprise): Requires
an additional 1 GB of RAM and additional 15 GB of available hard
disk space. The requirement for a processor capable of hardware
virtualization has been lifted.
Windows Media Center (included in Home Premium, Professional,
Ultimate and Enterprise), requires a TV tuner to receive and record
Your graphics card needs to support DirectX 9 if you plan to
utilize Aero. Also, if you intend on installing Window 7 using DVD
media, your optical drive will need to support DVD discs.