From the good old days of Windows 98, Microsoft had a system of storing the password and login information for all users in a SAM file. This file is further encrypted to make its content unreadable and any access to it is denied. However, that is true as long as Windows is running.
Now, let us consider this scenario. You have lost your Windows password and have a ton of software installed. You do not want to install it again and although you know the password is in that file, you can do nothing abut it! Apparently, that is about to change.
Offline NT Password & Registry Editor is a great utility to recover Windows passwords on just about any version, be it Windows NT, 2000, XP, Vista or Win7.
Offline NT Password & Registry Editor
Get the Offline NT Password & Registry Editor from its homepage at pogostick. You will get an ISO image in the zip file. Burn it to a CD and boot from the CD, just like you would install Windows.
After you boot, the software will show you a list of Windows installations and ask you which one you would like to reset. Each installation is accompanied by a number on the left. Enter the number, and you will prompted for the location of the registry. The default option is selected in it, and you need to press enter to confirm. The next screen asks for what you want to do. You want to do a password recovery. So enter 1 and enter 1 once again to choose “Edit user data and Passwords”.
Now, you must be wondering why I am guiding you through the process if it is so easy and can be done by pressing 1 and enter each time. The truth is, at the final step, the default selected action is quit!
Now that you know, read carefully at each step and proceed to change your password. The tool cannot actually recover the exact password you had but it can reset it. That works great for most people.