So, you forgot your Windows 10 password? There’s no need be shameful of it. This is something that has happened to most of us at least once in our life.
If you want it back, well, I’ve got both good and bad news for you. Good news is that it’s entirely possible to restore your password with some Windows 10 hacks. Bad news is that it won’t be easy. Most likely.
Still up for it? Keep on reading then.
All in all, these are all of the password recovery methods that we’ll be looking at. From the easiest ones to the most aggressive, most difficult methods.
- Utilize Your Password Reset Disk
- Reset your MS Account Password
- Utilize 3rd Party Programs
- I still can’t Recover my Password – Now What?
Utilize Your Password Reset Disk
This is the most effective and easiest way of restoring a lost password. But, it’s mostly for local accounts. If you’re using a MS account, then just skip this step.
A password reset disk is the official method of MS to restore forgotten/lost passwords. The only downside to it is that you need to create a reset disk before losing your password.
If you have already forgotten your password and you don’t have a password reset disk, move on as this step won’t be of any use to you.
For those of you who had happened to create one at some point, all you have to do is to click on the “reset password” below your password area, insert the disk which holds the reset key, and follow the steps that you will be provided with by the password reset wizard.
If everything goes well, you should have full access to your computer again in a matter of minutes. There is one bigger downside to the password reset disk method.
That’s that anyone who might know that you have such a disk can easily use it at any time to get access to your computer.
Reset Your MS Account Password
If you’re logged in with your online MS account, then all you have to do is to reset the password of that account and then you’ll be able to get access to your computer again.
Since you don’t have access to your current setup, you’ll have to use another computer or a smartphone to access Microsoft’s website.
But do keep in mind that you don’t need an administrator account to do that. So, if you have a non-administrator account, then you can rely on that too.
Other than that, you’ll also need a secondary email that you have access to that is connected to your account or a phone number.
All you have to do is visit Microsoft’s password reset page, click on the reason that you want to reset your password, prove that you’re the one who’s trying to do it with either an alternate email account or your phone number, and proceed in creating a new password.
After that, you should be able to use your new password to access your administrator account. That’s considering that your administrator account is connected to your Microsoft account.
Utilize 3rd Party Programs
When everything else fails, 3rd part software is here to save the day. If you’ve never heard of this, there are programs which were made with the purpose of reseting Windows passwords.
The good thing with these kind of programs is that they are relatively easy to use. Other than that, they don’t need an administrator account to work.
So, if you have a “regular” account on your PC, then you can proceed with that. If not, then you’ll have to get access to another computer.
The bad thing is that the most trustworthy and effective password reset programs of the bunch cost money. I mean, you could always resort to freeware and pirated software, but we all know that this is a very easy way to receive malware.
The process of using these programs is very straightforward and simple. All you have to do is burn the ISO image to a DVD disc or a USB thumb drive and boot from it. After that everything is pretty much self-explanatory.
How can I Boot from a DVD Disc or a USB Thumb Drive?
If you’re new to this whole “booting from external drives” thing then you might find this a bit terrifying and confusing.
But, there’s no need to worry. All you have to do is go to your BIOS and make sure that booting from a DVD or an external drive is enabled.
I would guide you through it step by step, but the process for each computer is rather different. So, you’ll have to figure this one yourself.
On my Dell Laptop, I need to press F2 on startup in order to get into the BIOS, then go under the “general” category and pick the device that I want to boot from first.
And that’s how you can boot into the password reset software of your choice. Remember to remove the installation media after you’re done or change your BIOS settings back to normal so that you’ll be able to boot into Windows 10.
I Still Can’t Recover My Windows 10 Password – Now What?
If none of these methods worked for you, then I’m afraid that you’re more or less forced to format your computer and perform a clean install.
But before that, make sure to cloud backup your important files into an external storage device or you’ll surely lose them.
You can easily do that by taking out your main drive from your computer, plug it into another PC, and backup the files/folders of your choice to an external drive.
After that, you can insert your main drive back to your computer, insert the Windows installation media, and proceed to make a fresh installation of Windows.
After your computer is working normally again you can proceed to plug your external drive and restore your backed up files. I know that this is a rather tedious process but it’s pretty much the only way to bring your computer back to life again.