So, you've hit your head upon the nearest table corner and are suffering from selective amnesia. Or you've been so paranoid and have changed your admin password more than you've changed your shirt. It was inevitable that you would forget the administrator password. Chances are that you haven't really helped yourself and created either a Password Hint, a Password Reset Disk or another Administrator-privileges enabled account. Do not despair. All is not lost, and you may still be able to bring things back to normal without a reinstall. However, once you're done with this HOWTO, please create a password reset disk in Windows XP and store it in a safe place and save yourself a world of trouble. Tool #1: Offline NT Password and Registry Editor: Get it here: Bootable floppy: http://home.eunet.no/~pnordahl/ntpasswd/bd041205.zip Bootable CD: http://home.eunet.no/~pnordahl/ntpasswd/cd041205.zip and then boot the computer off it. It will detect and offer to unlock locked or disabled out user accounts but be warned, that if you've encrypted user data, you may end up corrupting it if you've used EFS. Tool #2: Austrumi Austrumi is a Linux bootable ISO image for recovering NT passwords and other cool tools and methods, sized for Business Card size CD media (50Mb). It allows you to change any password, including that of the Administrator, on a partition occupied by Windows NT, Windows 2000 or Windows XP. Simply boot the CD and when you get to the initial boot prompt, type: boot: nt_pass This will launch a console utility that will detect Windows partitions on the hard disk and provide you with a menu to modify any user or Administrator passwords on the Windows system. It will even give access to the Windows registry for recovery purposes. Quite a handy utility to keep in your wallet (AUSTRUMI is small enough to fit on a business card-size CD) if you are unfortunate enough to having to deal with Windows machines in your line of work. Read more at http://sourceforge.net/projects/austrumi Download the files you need here: http://prdownloads.sourceforge.net/austrumi/austrumi-0.9.2.iso?download Tool #3: XP Password Recovery: This site provides a tool to recover lost Windows XP passwords. It works for administrator accounts, it doesn't change the password just tells you the old one. It works with encrypted files (EFS) and password hashes. It even works if no passwords at all are known for the machine (as long as you have another computer with internet access to view this website with). It does not work if the password has symbols or spaces in. Author (Oliver Mattos) claims it also works with Windows NT and Windows Server 2003 and Windows Longhorn, but the BEST thing about it is the fact that it won't reset your passwords, but simply reveal them for you to remember and then use. Give it a try. The author would like to receive feedbacks for debugging and troubleshooting purposes. Note: You'll need a blank floppy to run the process, and it will take anywhere between a few minutes to a few hours for the scan to complete. Usage, instructions and additional information can be found at http://xpcracker.mine.nu/xpcracker Source NOTE: I am not responsible if scriptkiddies and other crazed individuals go around using this for purposes of showing off and trying to be l33t. I am not responsible if you get fired because you didn't do your job as a sysadmin and you let someone lock you out of your own computer. In short, I'm not responsible for jack.