Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Password Reset Disk - Create on USB Flash Drive in Windows 8

  1. #10


    Posts : 7
    W7 Pro 64bit


    Thank you for replying.

    The USB is plugged in when I try to make the reset disk.
    There is no icon in the desktop task bar nor anywhere in the START screen.
    I have no other tasks running and there is no screen under anything.

    The Task Manager shows only Windows Host Process (Rundll32) active and I can switch to it but nothing shows up as a wizard or anything else.

    There is only one user and that is me and I have adminstrator access.

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  2. #11


    Posts : 22,582
    64-bit Windows 10


    In that case, see if it may work properly after restarting the PC.

    If not, then run a SFC /SCANNOW command to see if it may find and repair any corrupted files that may be at fault. Afterwards, see if it may work properly.
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  3. #12


    Cairo, Egypt
    Posts : 1
    64-bit windows 8.1 Single Language


    Hi Mr. Brink
    would like to ask if the password reset disk I created is valid for all/any (forgotten) passwords of the local accounts existing in my windows 8.1? and what about the account I switched its password to the password of my Hotmail account? does it reset the old local account too? thanks for your attention.
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  4. #13


    Posts : 22,582
    64-bit Windows 10


    Hello Boccelli, and welcome to Eight Forums.

    The password reset disk would only be good for the user account that it was created in. It will not work for any other account. If you change or reset password, you will need to update the password reset disk by creating it again.


    Hope this helps,
    Shawn
    Last edited by Brink; 05 Mar 2014 at 13:44. Reason: correction
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  5. #14


    Posts : 22,582
    64-bit Windows 10


    You're correct. The password reset disk will reset the user account's password no matter how many times you reset it.
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  6. #15


    Posts : 15
    win 8.1 Pro / 64


    Shawn;

    I have never ended up using a reset so I'm not certain exactly how it works, but have a question about what you said in the tutorial:

    You can move the userkey.psw file to another USB flash drive if you like, but you can only have one userkey.psw file on a USB flash drive.
    I want to put all resets from several win 7 & 8 machines on one flash. Mostly to keep everything in one place and to not be wasting memory having that little file on a whole flash drive. Does the file need to be in the root to reset? If so, I would think I could save the file under directories like Key-For-PC1, Key-For-PC2, etc. and move the appropriate file up to the root if/when needed. Or if windows looks for the key all over the drive, then maybe keep all the files in the root but rename each file to PC1-userkey.psw, PC2-userkey.psw or maybe userkey.psw-pc1, userkey.psw-pc2.

    Do you know which if any of these schemes would be appropriate?

    thanks
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  7. #16


    Posts : 22,582
    64-bit Windows 10


    Hello Spokey,

    I have not tried that, but it may be worth a try to create a folder for each PC, and place that PC's userkey.psw file in it's own folder.

    I would start off testing with only two PCs to see if Windows will recognize it like that though.
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  8. #17


    Posts : 15
    win 8.1 Pro / 64


    Seems like the renaming scheme works fine

    Here is what I did

    After thinking about this, I thought that the preferable organization would be to have all files in the root with the names changed. My thinking was that if I need to use a reset, I would copy the appropriate key and rename it back to userkey.psw. That way I wouldn't have to worry about forgetting to rename the file back back to the obscured version and getting files mixed up. Of course the named folder should work as well and with a copy from the folder to the root eliminate confusion as well.

    So first I wanted to see if it looked like MS looked at the exact filename. I did a quick format on an old flash drive. First I generated the reset key. Then I did the generation a second time. In addition to the usual warning boxes, I got this warning:

    Name:  Snap2.jpg
Views: 382
Size:  19.4 KB

    I let the wizard overwrite the key. Then I renamed the key to HP-Laptop-userkey.psw and ran the wizard again. This time it did not complain and generated the userkey.psw file. So it looked like a simple filename rename would work.

    I deleted both files to start clean again. Generated the key and renamed it to HP-Laptop-userkey.psw. I generated keys for two more machines with appropriate renaming.

    So I had three reset files

    Name:  reset file list.jpg
Views: 377
Size:  16.2 KB

    To test, I used the HP laptop (win 8.1). I logged off and then typed a bad password. got this error

    Click image for larger version

    Then I copied the desktop file, renamed it to userkey.psw and tried again. The reset asked for a new password and hint and issued this error (due to the wrong reset file).

    Click image for larger version

    I renamed the correct pwd file and successfully reset the password to the correct current password.

    The only odd thing was I rebooted the laptop with a shutdown -r and got a startup error. Told the dialog to restart instead of fixing and it booted fine

    I did the shutdown -r again and it was fine on this boot.

    I added a couple more machine reset files and tried a more realistic scenario with a win7 desktop. This time I shut down completely and went into the reset via a bad password. Once again it failed to find a reset file. I logged in and did the copy / rename, reran the test and set the password to a new password successfully.

    All this suggests that many more options are available. For example, instead of storing the userkey.psw files on a flash drive, just store them on external backup drive and copy the one file you need to a USB drive when needed. Or copy them to a floppy (ok but I still have those) or burn them to a CD.
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  9. #18


    Posts : 22,582
    64-bit Windows 10


    Great news Spokey. Thank you for posting back with your results.
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  10. #19


    Posts : 1
    windows 7


    Quote Originally Posted by spokey View Post
    Seems like the renaming scheme works fine

    Here is what I did

    After thinking about this, I thought that the preferable organization would be to have all files in the root with the names changed. My thinking was that if I need to use a reset, I would copy the appropriate key and rename it back to userkey.psw. That way I wouldn't have to worry about forgetting to rename the file back back to the obscured version and getting files mixed up. Of course the named folder should work as well and with a copy from the folder to the root eliminate confusion as well.

    So first I wanted to see if it looked like MS looked at the exact filename. I did a quick format on an old flash drive. First I generated the reset key. Then I did the generation a second time. In addition to the usual warning boxes, I got this warning:

    Name:  Snap2.jpg
Views: 382
Size:  19.4 KB

    I let the wizard overwrite the key. Then I renamed the key to HP-Laptop-userkey.psw and ran the wizard again. This time it did not complain and generated the userkey.psw file. So it looked like a simple filename rename would work.

    I deleted both files to start clean again. Generated the key and renamed it to HP-Laptop-userkey.psw. I generated keys for two more machines with appropriate renaming.

    So I had three reset files

    Name:  reset file list.jpg
Views: 377
Size:  16.2 KB

    To test, I used the HP laptop (win 8.1). I logged off and then typed a bad password. got this error

    Click image for larger version

    Then I copied the desktop file, renamed it to userkey.psw and tried again. The reset asked for a new password and hint and issued this error (due to the wrong reset file).

    Click image for larger version

    I renamed the correct pwd file and successfully reset windows 8 password to the correct current password.

    The only odd thing was I rebooted the laptop with a shutdown -r and got a startup error. Told the dialog to restart instead of fixing and it booted fine

    I did the shutdown -r again and it was fine on this boot.

    I added a couple more machine reset files and tried a more realistic scenario with a win7 desktop. This time I shut down completely and went into the reset via a bad password. Once again it failed to find a reset file. I logged in and did the copy / rename, reran the test and set the password to a new password successfully.

    All this suggests that many more options are available. For example, instead of storing the userkey.psw files on a flash drive, just store them on external backup drive and copy the one file you need to a USB drive when needed. Or copy them to a floppy (ok but I still have those) or burn them to a CD.
    thanks, I will try it.
    Last edited by Anderson11; 16 Jun 2016 at 22:12.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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Password Reset Disk - Create on USB Flash Drive in Windows 8
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