Breaking The Password Code


Q. My son was playing with my home computer and he added a password. Now he’s forgotten the password, and I can’t access any of my files. What can I do? Can I ever get back into the computer?

A. First of all, I suggest you take an appropriate action to be sure this never happens again. But worry not; the Windows password is hardly a serious obstacle. Here’s how to defeat it: While you’re starting up the computer, hold down the F8 key. In a short time, a menu will appear on the screen. One of the choices will be Command Prompt Only. Highlight that command and hit Enter. At the C prompt (C:), type “cdwindows” (without the quote marks, of course). Then type “del *.pwl” (again without the quotes), which will remove the password, and turn off the computer. The next time you boot up you won’t need the password.

Removing a password from Windows is somewhat harder than adding a new one, but it can be done.

However, if you want to put in a new password to keep your son out of the computer, go to Start, Settings, Control Panel, Passwords and click on Change Windows Password. Then pick a password, and certainly don’t share it with the kid.

SPONSORED REPORT

How the election may affect taxation of business income

This report summarizes recent proposals to reform the U.S. business income tax system and considers the path to enactment of any such legislation.

VIDEO

How to Excel pivot a general ledger

The general ledger is a vast historical data archive of your company's financial activities, including revenue, expenses, adjustments, and account balances. J. Carlton Collins, CPA, shows how to prepare data for, and mine data with, PivotTables.

QUIZ

Did you follow 2016’s biggest accounting news?

CPAs will remember 2016 as a year of new standards and new faces. How well did you follow the biggest accounting events? The 7 questions in this quiz will help you find out