Posts Tagged ‘Windows 7’

Resetting a windows user password

October 13, 2012 Leave a comment

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



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.


How do I: Install SharePoint 2010 on Windows 7

October 9, 2012 Leave a comment

I recently installed SharePoint 2010 on a Windows 7 VM. I referenced this MSDN article

Windows 7 Feature Comparisons

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 Unlimited

Original Source:

Microsoft Windows 7 Edition Comparison (Click the feature comparison tab):

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.

In a hotel with wired and no wireless? No problem with Windows 7 #TEE12

Let me give you a handy tip whilst working in a hotel.

The scenario…

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!

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