Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Reset Password in Windows Server 2008 (RTM and R2) and Windows 7

So, I Googled and found these instructions that I've added to a bit (net group) and added some handy screen captures as well:

1. Boot from DVD or USB media - this media can be Windows Server 2008 RTM, 2008 R2, SBS 2008 or even Windows 7.

2. Change the language to English (Australia) if you want - but we're not installing anything, so it really doesn't matter right now

3. Click on the "Repair your computer" link

4. Choose the OS instance that you wish to reset the Administrator (or other Administrative) password for, taking note of the drive letter that was chosen for it (normally D:)

5. Choose "Command Prompt"

6. Change to the Windows\System32 directory of this OS instance and move the Utilman.exe file to a  backup, then copy cmd.exe to Utilman.exe

7. Remove the USB Key, reboot into the Windows install you need to change the password for and when at the Login prompt, hit Windows+U

8. Type 'net group "Domain Users"' to see a list of all the domain users on this system (Domain Controllers only)

9. Type 'net group "Domain Admins"' to see which administrative accounts exist on the system (Domain Controllers only) then type 'net user Administrator Select_a_decent_passphrase' to change the password of the Administrator account

10. Log in using the new password.  Immediately go and change this password to a nice, secure passphrase.

11. Reboot with the DVD/USB boot media and copy the backed up Utilman.exe.bak file to Utilman.exe to make sure we don't leave this hole open for now.  And that's it!  :)