I orginally wrote about this way back when in 2006 when AskTheAdmin was just born. Now here I am 4 years later writing about the same tool! This is not just any tool though this is the Offline NT Password Recovery Boot CD. By downloading this ISO and burning it to a cd – you can then boot to this CD and change or blank out passwords by loading the SAM database offline hence the name offline password recovery.

It is as simple as booting to the CD, choosing the account and doing the deed. You write your changes back to the drive and reboot.

When you are back at the Windows login screen you will now be able to use the password you enetered or a blank password (just hit enter)

Here are the links to download the image:

  • cd100627.zip (~4MB) – Bootable CD image. (md5sum: 6d80cdfbba97457e413f95a3554d9524 cd100627.zip)
  • cd080802.zip (~3MB) – Previous version CD image. (md5sum: 33ecd38263f935b82e7b2e3e9f5de563)

and there is even a Floppy Disk release that is no longer updated:

Floppy release (not updated anymore), see below on how to use them

  • bd080526.zip (~1.4M) – Bootdisk image (md5sum: 37889e4c540504e59132bdcdfe7f9bb7)
  • drivers1-080526.zip (~310K) – Disk drivers (mostly PATA/SATA) (md5sum: 72ac1731c6ba735d0ac2746a30dbc3ee)
  • drivers2-080526.zip (~1.2M) – Disk drivers (mostly SCSI) (md5sum: 30172bec657c85a5f1a0b43601452fb7)

This CD has saved my ass a number of times! Do you have another method of recovering lost passwords? We would love to hear about them in the comments! You can also check out their website for FAQ’s and other helpful hints here.

Have you seen this post on opening a command prompt during a windows install? Using this you can start a recovery install jump to a command prompt and run:

control userpasswords2

and bingo bango you can change your passwords!