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Reinstalling Windows on a password protected laptop.

Discussion in 'Computers and Networks' started by Nigel Goodwin, Jan 12, 2016.

  1. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Hi, I'm after a little advice here, I've been given an Asus S500C laptop, which runs Win8 - but it's asking for a login password - anyone know how to reinstall Windows from the recovery partition and reset the entire machine without getting in to Windows first?.

    For that matter, would installing Win10 (from a USB drive) wipe out the existing passwords?.
     
  2. DerStrom8

    DerStrom8 Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    If your Win10 installation is a full install and not just an update for Windows 7, 8, or 8.1, then it might let you wipe out old passwords. I think you'd be better off, though, creating a Ubuntu Live CD (free) and wiping (formatting) the hard drive completely before installing Windows 10.

    I'm just saying this off the top of my head. I've never done this, so take my suggestions with a grain of salt.

    Matt
     
  3. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Unfortunately it's only an update, on a USB drive I used to update my Win8 machine at home over Christmas.

    I've been doing some more googling, and have found a suggested method - assuming I can get the laptop to boot to a command prompt - I'm off work tomorrow, so I'll have a further play then. I've not got the PSU either, but these are cheaply available if I can get it sorted out, for now I've found a plug that fits it, and I'm going to try 19V from my bench supply when I get home (it's about half charged at the moment, but I don't want it to die while I'm 'fiddling' with it :D)
     
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  4. dave

    Dave New Member

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  5. SPDCHK

    SPDCHK Member

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    http://www.hirensbootcd.org/download/

    I always have a copy of Hiren BootCD. Some nifty tools on there. There is a section on passwords. Might just do the trick for you?
     
  6. Les Jones

    Les Jones Well-Known Member

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    Last edited: Jan 12, 2016
  7. DerStrom8

    DerStrom8 Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    I would expect the password would be for the former owner's user login.
     
  8. Dr_Doggy

    Dr_Doggy Well-Known Member

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    "If i recall correctly" win 8 system is like cell phone, can not change version... Os is installed right from bios
    try to fresh reinstall from safe mode/bios level, get as close to formatting as you can,

    I would even eject HD, format it from my pc, put it back in laptop and run recovery,.... research this before implementing, just a guess from old memory , and a one time service i did... (maybe needed recovery cd)
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2016
  9. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Yes, it's the former users (in fact two different users) password - the BIOS password isn't set.

    Interestingly, I've just realised it's got a solidstate HDD in it as well, a 120GB Sandisk one.
     
  10. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Getting a bit further, following lot's of googling I eventually managed to boot from a Win10 USB drive and get to a command prompt.

    From there I managed to add a new user (myself) using the 'net user' command.

    Next problem was it was only a standard user account !!! - and I needed an administrator account to upgrade it :banghead:

    More googling, back to the command prompt from the USB drive, and running regedit I managed to enable the default Administrator account and upgrade mine using that, then deleted the two original accounts.

    So it's looking good, but the battery is getting really low, and I couldn't get my bench supply to work with it, possibly the plug I'm using isn't the correct size.

    Have to order a PSU for it.
     
  11. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Just a bit of an update, the Asus was already upgraded to Win10, and (presumably due to the small size of the SSD) doesn't have a recovery partition on the drive - I'll make a recovery disc when I get round to it.

    The PSU I ordered for it has come, and I've got it charged up now - it seems pretty impressive, particularly the SSD - the Laptop is completely silent (which is really weird :D), and boots up extremely fast.

    I'm so impressed with it I'm considering getting an SSD for my desktop machine, has anyone any thoughts on that?.
     
  12. atferrari

    atferrari Well-Known Member

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    Hola Nigel,

    Not exactly on the subject: 120Gb, is it enough for expected future use? Everything seems to be around Tera bytes these days. . . Or just for backup?
     
  13. zahwi

    zahwi Member

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    I have SSD in my desktop for 4 years now, it's the best upgrade I've ever done. Everything is much faster.
     
  14. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    It's what's in it - and I'm not a big fan of laptops, so it's likely to be as much as I need (although I could always upgrade it is the need arises).

    For my desktop I'm considering a 240GB or 500GB, using the old HDD as the data disk.
     
  15. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    That was my thought :D

    Thanks for the confirmation.

    I've run benchmarking on the drives, my desktop HDD scores 578 - the SSD in the Laptop scores 2999 :D
     
  16. Tony Stewart

    Tony Stewart Well-Known Member Most Helpful Member

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    There are bootable password recovery methods I have used in the past but I have not tried on EUFI bootmgrs.

    Can you get into BIOS? or Function key Recovery menu?

    http://pcsupport.about.com/od/windows-8/a/reset-password-windows-8.htm
     
  17. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    You need to read the rest of thread, I've got it sorted :D

    Took a fair bit of googling, but OSK.EXE was the key.

    But to answer your specific two questions, I could get into BIOS (I had to, to enable booting from a USB drive), and couldn't get to the Recovery menu as I couldn't get as far as Windows. By using the OSK.EXE trick and NET USER I was able to add myself as an extra user, then from that was able to enable the default Administrator account using REGEDIT.
     
  18. DerStrom8

    DerStrom8 Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    In desktop computers it is generally preferred to have at least two separate drives: 1) One small SSD that you can get for relatively cheap--You install the OS on this drive, and it allows it to run fairly quickly, at least compared to HDDs, and 2) One large HDD (in the order of hundreds of gigabytes or terabytes) to use for your data--You would save your documents, videos, photos, music, and other files on this drive. SSDs in the terabyte range are very expensive.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2016
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  19. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Following the later part of this discussion, I've now ordered a 480Gb SSD for my desktop machine :D

    I was considering a 240GB one, but the 480 was less than double the cost, and a 960 is more than double the cost of the 480.
     
  20. zahwi

    zahwi Member

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    I'm quite sure that when you get it going you will feel bad for not doing it a day before.
    Win 10 starts in 2 sec.
     
  21. Nigel Goodwin

    Nigel Goodwin Super Moderator Most Helpful Member

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    Thank you for that! :D
     

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