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Old 05-04-2009, 06:19 PM
28,645 posts, read 40,622,302 times
Reputation: 37346


A client wanted an unused PC set up to use in a mall where he is renting a kiosk to buy scrap gold. I changed the main user name to the name of the mall and did a bunch of cleanup, updating and additions to the system.

The last thing added before shut down was a USB wireless from DLink.

The PC was shutdown and placed in storage until everything was ready at the mall. Just before setup time he asked me to transfer his email address to the PC.

Boot the PC and the login is back to the old user and the login screen is not the one with icons, but the one that just shows the name. It would not let me log in, even in Safe Mode using Administrator.

So I took it to the office and used a neat CD I downloaded last fall and had never used before. I wrote on it: Austrumi PW/User Fix / NT_PASS

I booted to the disk and keyed in NT_PASS and followed the prompts. It listed all the users and their status. Guest was off, but all the others, including Administrator were disabled and locked.

It had me pick one, enabled and unlocked it, set the password to null (I had the option to leave it or change it) ran through a couple of screens and had me reboot.

The login screen let me pass even though it was still the wrong screen. I went into Users to change the way they login and it gave me an eror message, which I now wish I had written down. The gist of it was that a third party app had added msgina.dll and gave the path to it.

I googled the message and received numerous complaints regarding DLink doing this. One link went to an MS site where I was instructed to remove a single line in the registry, then reboot.

Fixed it. Came up with the "icon" screen and the user name for the mall.

Now I can't find where I downloaded the file to create the CD so I can pass it along!

I will look some more.
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Old 05-04-2009, 07:34 PM
Location: Lemon Grove, CA USA
1,055 posts, read 3,648,435 times
Reputation: 952
There are many really good recovery CDs for situations like that.

If you are familiar with linux you can custom build one to fill whatever specific needs you have. For that Knoppix is pretty handy.

On the other hand a tool box with more tools than you will probably ever need or want is Hiren's Boot CD. Sure there is a lot of redundancy in there and you will probably never need it all but when a system won't boot or you you can't get into the OS it is nice to have a pile of tools at your disposal.
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Old 05-05-2009, 07:34 AM
Location: WV and Eastport, ME
11,750 posts, read 11,317,384 times
Reputation: 7707
Originally Posted by Tek_Freek View Post
..... Came up with the "icon" screen and the user name for the mall.

Now I can't find where I downloaded the file to create the CD so I can pass it along! .....
That "icon" screen is called the Welcome Screen. I sometimes turn it off on purpose. If the computer has only one active account (besides Administrator) and it has no password (nor does Administrator), the PC will start up to a Desktop screen without having to click on an Account icon. You can find the switch by going to the Control Panel | User Accounts | User Accounts, then select "Change the was users log on or off" and take the check out of "Use the Welcome screen."

Here is one place to get a password remover (among other things): UBCD for Windows

The Ultimate Boot CD has saved me several times when people had bought a used computer and did not have the Administrator password. The project was created by Benjamin Burrows and can do a lot more that just removed passwords. I've used it to simply remove a user's password when they forgot it. At work, we once had about 40 computers transferred from one agency to another and the tech guys would not give us the Admin passwords, so I just removed them as I needed access to a PC.
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