Thoughts, information and reflections about technology

Windows Password Recovery by Pogostick

One of our clients got locked out of their Windows 2000 system. They somehow forgot the password.

The password recovery bootdisk from Pogostick is a great tool for these situations. As with any powerful tool, there are are some risks. Also, if the user opted for encrypting their files, you will not be able to recover them with this tool.

However, if you are simply trying to restore access and the files are unecrypted, this tool is worth a try. You first download the ISO file and then burn a bootable CD from that.

Some systems will require that you change the boot options to allow booting from a CD. Once you boot, then you will be in a linux/unix environment. In most cases, you can simply choose the default options.

We simply cleared the password for the Administrator account and saved the changes. Once we did that and rebooted, we were able to access the Adminisrator account. From there, changing the password for the user’s account was simply a matter of going into the control panel.

You can find the pogostick password recovery boot CD at

http://pogostick.net/~pnh/ntpasswd/bootdisk.html

Keep in mind the other side of this. This is a fantastic tool for gaining legitimate access to systems. It can also be used for illigitimate access. Part of your security plan should involve controlling physical access to your systems.

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One Response to Windows Password Recovery by Pogostick

  • I bought my 64-bits computer with a preinstalled XP and turned it into a multiboot Ubuntu machine.
    Upgrading to the latest 10.04 was responsible for not be able to boot XP anymore. Just a blinking cursor.
    I found a posting that I had to use my Windows recovery disk and boot with it, jump into Recovery and then, from the prompt, would give the command "fixboot".
    But alas, what is the Administrator password? All my other attempts with various methods and disks failed, but this pogostick utility saved not only my day, but my whole week.
    And yes, the method with fixboot works, the multiboot feature was restored and not overwritten. Though it is always a good advice to know what you are doing.

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