A friend brought me his PC with Windows Vista to reset the user password because he didn't use it for a long while and forgot his password.

So I found a tutorial on how to reset the password by using a Ubuntu Live CD and the software chntpw.

After I installed this software I mounted the SYSTEM partition by opening it with the file explorer. It is now available at /media/SYSTEM/

The tutorial says I have to open the file /windows/system32/config/sam with chntpw and reset the password with

chntpw -u USERNAME sam

After I did this it didn't show me any errors. So I unmounted the partition and rebooted the PC with the installed Windows Vista. It is still locked with the old password.

Did I do any mistakes or is there an other way to reset the password?


You mustn't change the password with chntpw, what you can do is reset it (if you could change it that means that you can read the previous password). The correct way to use it is:

cd /media/B830C9BC30C981BC/WINDOWS/system32/config
sudo chntpw SAM SECURITY

(change B830C9BC30C981BC as appropiated)

Once in this screen you will get to answer several questions. READ CAREFULLY. Select the account you want to modify then reset the password.

1 - Clear (blank) user password
2 - Edit (set new) user password (careful with this on XP or Vista)

If reseting the password directly doesn't work, you can activate the Administrator account and from there reset your password.

  • I cant find B830C9BC30C981BC in media.. what am I missing – meda Jul 12 '14 at 6:17
  • 1
    You have to change B830C9BC30C981BC with your path that links to the Windows partition. – snix Jul 29 '14 at 6:46
  • I have activated the administrator account( 1- clear (blank) didnt work for me) but how do I reset the password of my account from administrator account ? – Waqas Sep 3 '15 at 8:30

protected by Community Feb 16 '14 at 4:35

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