A friend of mine brought me his brother’s laptop. His brother just got home from the hospital after a stroke and couldn’t remember the password. I never tried retrieving a forgotten password before, so I jumped at the opportunity.
I downloaded the open source Ophcrack live CD from here…
I burned the live CD to a disc, and booted the laptop from it. Ophcrack started up, and there was a display error. No text was showing up in the desktop environment.
During startup, there was an option to choose “Ophcrack Graphic VESA mode”. I restarted using that option instead, and everything looked fine this time. The thing that I thought was really cool is that I didn’t have to press anything for Ophcrack to start cracking the Windows XP password. It just started doing it automatically, and after 9 minutes, I had the password for the administrator account. Also, it told me two other limited accounts on there had no passwords.
So, I tried logging in to the Windows XP administrator account using the password Ophcrack gave me, and it worked! Then, I was able to change my friend’s bro’s limited account to an administrator one.