Reset your Windows password with Chntpw using System Rescue CD

Quick note about using chntpw command to reset Windows passwords. Mostly, I just couldn’t remember what the command line program was or the switches.

Boot to System Rescue CD.
mount the Windows drive RW (mine was RO)
cd to the config dir: cd /mnt/sda1/Windows/System32/config
Backup your sam,security,system,software (just copy them to another directory)

Now run this to list user while in the config directory:
chntpw -l ./sam

And this will run in interactive mode and ask you which user to edit the password.
chntpw -i ./sam

Chntpw can also edit your registry. One time it really saved the day when I was locked out of a computer and something was causing boot to fail. This made it pretty quick to edit the registry in a way that allowed me access to the system again. (then we proceeded to run a bunch of antivirus checks)  By the way, this worked for me on Windows XP and Windows 7.

Great tool!


  • Blueking Cx

    Good  tip ! Anthoer way to use chntpw can be found at this page:

  • ChairsNJ

    Ophcrack, chntpw can recover or recover windows password.
    How to crack windows 7 password show more workable solutions to reset windows password with password reset disk or password software.

  • marion

    A few days ago, I had met the headache things that I had forgotten Windows login password. The login screen rejected my passwords. I was frustrated because there was very important data on my disk and I couldn’t reinstall the OS. ………….
    However, I fortunately got to know the Reset Windows Password utility, which is a professional windows password recovery tool for us to reset windows 7 password instantly yet no data loss.

  • d

    ophcrack uses rainbow tables and costs for any real functionaltity. chntpw is really the better way for password reset.

  • tazman22

    What is password hint: NO HACKERS ALLOWED ( a book?)