Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Windows 7: Administrator account is disabled. What now?

I recently had some problems with a Windows 7 installation gone bad that required some trickery that left the system in a place where no user accounts were created, and the Administrator account was disabled. I could, therefore, only restart the computer.

The trick to solving the problem was to hit F10 to bring up the NTLDR advanced boot options prompt (for some reason, F8 to start Safe Mode did not work).

I found this handy list of boot options that allowed me to boot into safe mode and enable the Administrator account:
  • At the F10 prompt, I typed /SAFEBOOT:NETWORK to enable Safe Mode with Networking.
  • Once the machine booted, I used a cmd prompt as administrator, and typed:
  • net user administrator /active:yes

Other boot options that I noticed might be of interest:
  • /MININT - Starts the Windows Pre-installation Environment

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