Trouble Repairing WIndows XP Pro - Admin Password Issue

By Virtualgrrl ยท 5 replies
Mar 3, 2009
  1. Hi,

    After cleaning a massive infection, Windows is in dire need of a repair. I have the disc, and was attempting to repair/reinstall it, but I get to a DOS screen that asks for the Administrator Password. Now, I only have one user, w/full admin privileges, and that password doesn't work...When I boot in Safe Mode I do get an Administrator account, no password needed.

    I tried just pressing enter at the prompt, but then it just switches to C:\Windows , exiting the Installation CD...

    I have also tried going into the Control Panel to turn Administrator User back on, and add a password, but when I click on the Users Icon, nothing loads. (Part of the problems leading me to need to reinstall Windows. I KNOW at this point the easiest thing to do would be to wipe my HD and completely reinstall, but I can't even copy my files to back them up because I can copy but not paste! (Drag & Drop doesn't work either.)

    Any suggestions?

  2. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

  3. Sharam

    Sharam TS Rookie Posts: 509

    You need to press Esc instead of R and after pressing F8 for EULA, you will be prompted to choose between fresh install or to repair any instances of older installation the Setup program detects.

    EDIT: Follow the first link posted by kimsland (post #2 not the second link) bellow for Reair Install (not Recovery Console):
  4. Virtualgrrl

    Virtualgrrl TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thank you both for your help.

    It turns out I was already in the Recovery Console, only I don't know how to use it to get the drivers & Windows XP files in there anyhow.

    I had tried the way on the second link as well, but ran into a different screen halfway through that caused me to quit, it said I already had Windows installed and continuing would delete that installation, as well as all files, folders, and user accounts.

    Then I realized the CD was Windows XP Home Edition (Which, incidentally, it says it is too on the second link you gave me! Even though it says re-installing Windows XP Professional.)

    Anyways, so it doesn't look like this is gonna happen for me, at least not this way, huh guys?

    Maybe I can make this HD a slave on another computer and get at my data that way?
  5. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523

  6. Sharam

    Sharam TS Rookie Posts: 509

    Follow the links with the understanding that the XP CD you use has to match the installation of XP on that drive or you will get the same message, if you haven't re-installed Windows since you owned the system, your COA has this information. You might be able to borrow the right flavor CD and use your product key.

    You can connect your drive to another system in place of the optical drive temporarily and move your data, there are 2 issues you might face here.

    If the document folder was made private, you have to take ownership of that folder or you get access denied.

    There is also the possibility of the "host" computer getting infected if there are still viruses on the hard drive.

    Other option is to post at the Virus & Malware removal Forum since you can boot in to safe mode and have a Windows CD, I am sure the regulars on that forum could help you to the point that you might not even need a repair install, I'm sure after few steps, you would gain access to perform your back up and procced with a fresh install which is a very good idea.

    If this is an OEM system, there is usually a factory restore option that might include options to save data which you have to read word by work in case you have created custom folders.
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