Re: Can't log in

From: karl [x y] (
Date: 07/26/02

From: "karl [x y]" <>
Date: Fri, 26 Jul 2002 13:38:43 -0400

"Jim" <> wrote in message
> I most certanly am. But I may not be describing things
> correctly. If there's always an id and password, then the
> password had been the null string for I never typed one.
> Perhaps by a password for the machine as a whole, I meant
> a password for the domain. I don't understand domains so
> I'm not sure what the password I added was a password for.
> But neither of the 2 accounts on the machine had ever
> required typing in a password.

Since you now have a parallel install of Windows that can read NTFS, go to
the original windows folder and delete the SAM file or files [actually,
renaming the files is probably a better idea] using steps 3 through 5 as
previously described [which I've re-copied below]. This should blank out
the administrator password.

If Windows used to just let you in without giving you a login screen, then
the password is set in the registry and Windows was entering it for you
without any interaction on your part. The password would be kept in
HKLM\software\microsoft\windows NT\currentversion\winlogon in the
DefaultPassword and DefaultUserName value. [I believe there may be a way to
be able to import the registry in the original version of windows using
Regedit or REGEDT32 to learn the password, but I can't remember it.]

I assume you already tried logging into the original version of windows as
Administrator with no password.

If you have no options to change the domain on the login screen, then I'm
guessing your computer may be set to log into the workstation [not a domain]
and the workstation is not joined to a domain. If that's the case, then you
should be able to try logging in using the local accounts including

[Joining a workstation to a domain is done if you have a Windows NT or 2000
server and your login ID is kept on the server. You should not be able to
switch your computer from logging in using the accounts on the local
workstation to logging in using a domain, unless there is a domain server
present on your network, or your computer is a domain server. You could
however change a workstation from log into a domain to log in using the
local workstation. I wonder if maybe this is what happened.]

> >[excerpt copied below]
> >3. Change to the directory %systemroot%\system32\config\
> and rename the
> >SAM.* files to something else.
> >4. Reconnect back the harddisk to your machine.
> >5. Login as administrator, without password.
> >[Without the SAM files (the account database), you can
> Login as
> >"Administrator" with a blank password.]

> error message I know so well. Incidently, the parallel
> installation accepted it when I left the admin password
> blank on install, so, yes, it prompts for one, but doesn't
> require one.

Just a difference in our terms. My point is that whether you know it or not,
Windows is definitely entering a login ID for you to get into the system.
And every Windows 2000 login ID has an associated password usually chosen by
a human, even if the password is blank. It may seem an unimportant
distinction, but it's useful to know when dealing with this problem. I
assume you already tried to log in as Administrator with a blank password,
so I was assuming the password was something else.