I recently had to help a friend across the pond (Houston, TX) blindly over the phone to reset the administrator password on their laptop.
I came across the following excellent article to aid the situation:
However, as usual, the situation was never quite as per the article.
She didn’t know how to boot from CD and the bios wasn’t showing it as a device available in the boot options (F12 on a Dell XPS M1530).
So talking her through the bios setup to enable the CD/DVD boot device, we got there in the in end, popped in the Windows Vista disk and booted into Recovery mode:
- Next on the language screen
- On the install now screen, click repair this install
- Let it find the install on the hard drive and click next
- Select command prompt and run through the options below (taken straight from the site above)
- Please note the instructions below work on the following operating systems:
– Windows XP (requires the admin password, so not much use here)
– Windows Vista
- – Windows 7
TO RESET A FORGOTTEN ADMINISTRATOR PASSWORD, FOLLOW THESE STEPS:
1. Boot from Windows PE or Windows RE and access the command prompt.
2. Find the drive letter of the partition where Windows is installed. In Vista and Windows XP, it is usually C:, in Windows 7, it is D: in most cases because the first partition contains Startup Repair. To find the drive letter, type C: (or D:, respectively) and search for the Windows folder. Note that Windows PE (RE) usually resides on X:.
3. Type the following command (replace “c:” with the correct drive letter if Windows is not located on C:):
copy c:\windows\system32\sethc.exe c:\
This creates a copy of sethc.exe to restore later.
4. Type this command to replace sethc.exe with cmd.exe:
copy /y c:\windows\system32\cmd.exe c:\windows\system32\sethc.exe
Reboot your computer and start the Windows installation where you forgot the administrator password.
5. After you see the logon screen, press the SHIFT key five times.
6. You should see a command prompt where you can enter the following command to reset the Windows password (see screenshot above):
net user your_user_name new_password
If you don’t know your user name, just type net user to list the available user names.
7. You can now log on with the new password.
8. Once you have logged on and you are happy that you can access what you need, we need to revert our changes.
I recommend that you replace sethc.exe with the copy you stored in the root folder of your system drive in step 3. For this, you have to boot up again with Windows PE or RE because you can’t replace system files while the Windows installation is online. Then you have to enter this command:
copy /y c:\sethc.exe c:\windows\system32\sethc.exe
Hopefully this account of resetting the password helps others as well and thank you to Michael Pietroforte for his article. My friend can access her business files again and all up and running.
I recently installed SharePoint 2010 on a Windows 7 VM. I referenced this MSDN article http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/library/ee554869.aspx
I know this post is a bit off topic, but on a personal note we had a laptop die and we were deciding whether to go with a fully fledged laptop or a netbook, since my partners needs are simply email, Facebook and Microsoft Office functionality.
Battery life was also a key consideration, as well as being small and light.
So a netbook seemed like the obvious choice, but the nerd in me just has a niggley feeling that they are just too underpowered for that occasional YouTube visit etc…
So on to the web for some research and came across this useful table about Windows 7 editions and some of the key differences.
|Windows 7 Starter (limited distribution)||Windows 7 Home Basic (emerging market only)||Windows 7 Home Premium||Windows 7 Professional||Windows 7 Enterprise and Ultimate|
|Broad application and device compatibility with up to three concurrent applications.||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Safe, reliable, and supported.||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Home Group makes it easy to share media, documents and printers across multiple PCs in offices without a domain.||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Improved taskbar and JumpLists||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Live thumbnail previews and enhanced visual experience.||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Advanced networking support (ad-hoc wireless networks and Internet connection sharing).||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Mobility Center is included.||Yes||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Aero Glass and advanced windows navigation.||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Easy networking and sharing across all your PCs and devices.||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Windows Media Center||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Improved media format support, enhancements to Windows Media Center and media streaming, including Play To.||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Multi-touch and improved handwriting recognition.||Yes||Yes||Yes|
|Domain Join enables simple and secure server networking.||Yes||Yes|
|Encrypting File System protects data with advanced network backup.||Yes||Yes|
|Location Aware Printing helps find the right printer when moving between the office and home.||Yes||Yes|
|Remote Desktop Host||Yes||Yes|
|BitLocker prevent loss or theft of data.||Yes|
|BitLocker To Go protects data on removable devices.||Yes|
|DirectAccess links users to corporate resources from the road without a virtual private network (VPN).||Yes|
|BranchCache makes if faster to open files and Web pages from a branch office.||Yes|
|AppLocker easily restricts unauthorized software and enables greater security.||Yes|
|MUI multiple languages support.||Yes|
|Boot from VHD disk image.||Yes|
|Maximum running applications||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited||Unlimited|
Microsoft Windows 7 Edition Comparison (Click the feature comparison tab): http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/products/compare
In the end we decided to go with a middle ground laptop (Acer Aspire One) with Windows 7 Home Premium pre-installed, but it was certainly interesting to know what the different Windows products offer.
I think working for a Gold Partner we get a little spoilt by the latest and greatest, therefore these things can often get overlooked.
Anyway, off to start the day… till the next time.
Let me give you a handy tip whilst working in a hotel.
You are in a hotel that does have internet access but doesn’t have wifi, or in this case, the wifi is so hammered with all the TechEd attendants that it just isn’t worth it.
However, you do have a wired connection, but now my tablet / mobiles are useless since they rely on wifi and I don’t want data roaming charges.
Well a quick Google / Bing and I found this:
How to turn your laptop into a wireless hotspot:
It talks about some software, but for the command line steps on my Windows 7 laptop worked a treat:
- Start > Search… CMD
- Right click on the command prompt and select “Run as administrator…”
- Type: netsh wlan set hostednetwork mode=allow ssid=<My Network Name> key=<My Password>
- netsh wlan start hostednetwork
- Go to Change Adaptor Settings, right click on the network adaptor connected to the internet and select Properties
- Sharing Tab
- Check: Allow other network users to connect…
- Select the new network adaptor
- Click OK
Ta daa, instant wireless hotspot from a wired connection and no 3rd party software installed to achieve.
Now back to the work I missed whilst at TechEd Europe 2012!