Domain Admin PW Reset

less than 1 minute read


This hasn’t ever happened to me, but if you cannot remember the domain admin’s password, follow these steps to reset it.

To Resolve:

  1. Boot from install media and when it gets to the Windows install, select Next => Repair your computer => Troubleshoot => Command Prompt

  2. Now type:

    cd c:\windows\system32 # if Windows isn't on C drive, then type "wmic logicaldisk get caption,description,filesystem" to get the drive letter  
    ren Utilman.exe Utilman.exe.old  
    copy cmd.exe Utilman.exe
  3. Reboot the server. Don’t boot to CD, let it boot from the hard drive. At the login screen, use the shortcut “Windows Key + U” to bring up admin cmd.

  4. Now just type “net user administrator Password123” or whatever you want your password to be. Login and shut down the server. Boot from the install media again and get to the command prompt following step 1.

  5. Now type:

    cd c:\windows\system32  
    del Utilman.exe  
    ren Utilman.exe.old Utilman.exe
  6. Exit and reboot the server. Take out the boot disk and boot normally. Done.

  7. You can do all this from within Windows by taking all the permissions of utilman.exe, but I prefer the above method.