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Reset a password

Updated: January 21, 2005

Applies To: Windows Server 2003, Windows Server 2003 R2, Windows Server 2003 with SP1, Windows Server 2003 with SP2

To reset a password

For a local user account

  1. Open Computer Management (Local).

  2. In the console tree, double-click Local Users and Groups.

    Where?

    • Computer Management (Local)/System Tools/Local Users and Groups

  3. In the console tree, click Users.

  4. In the details pane, right-click the user name, and then click Set Password.

  5. Read the warning message, and then, if you want to continue, click Proceed.

  6. In New password and in Confirm password, type a new password, and then click OK.

Notes

  • To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the Administrators group on the local computer, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. Power Users can reset passwords of accounts they create. If the computer is joined to a domain, members of the Domain Admins group might be able to perform this procedure. As a security best practice, consider using Run as to perform this procedure. For more information, see Default local groups, Default groups, and Using Run as.

  • To open Computer Management, click Start, click Control Panel, double-click Administrative Tools, and then double-click Computer Management.

For a domain user account, and you are on a member server or a workstation that is joined to the domain

  1. Open Microsoft Management Console (MMC).

  2. On the File menu, click Add/Remove Snap-in, and then click Add.

  3. Click Active Directory Users and Computers, and then click Add.

  4. Click Close, and then click OK.

  5. In the console tree, click Users.

    Where?

    • Active Directory Users and Computers/Domain name/Users

  6. In the details pane, right-click the user name, and then click Reset Password.

  7. Type a new password in New password and in Confirm password, and then click OK.

Notes

  • To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the Domain Admins group or the Enterprise Admins group in Active Directory, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. As a security best practice, consider using Run as to perform this procedure. For more information, see Default local groups, Default groups, and Using Run as.

  • To open Microsoft Management Console, click Start, click Run, type mmc, and then click OK.

For a domain user account, and you are on a domain controller or on a workstation that has the Windows Server 2003 Administration Tools Pack installed

  1. Open Active Directory Users and Computers.

  2. In the console tree, click Users.

    Where?

    • Active Directory Users and Computers/Domain name/Users

  3. In the details pane, right-click the user name, and then click Reset Password.

  4. Type a new password in New password and in Confirm password, and then click OK.

Notes

  • To perform this procedure, you must be a member of the Domain Admins group or the Enterprise Admins group in Active Directory, or you must have been delegated the appropriate authority. As a security best practice, consider using Run as to perform this procedure. For more information, see Default local groups, Default groups, and Using Run as.

  • To open Active Directory Users and Computers, click Start, click Control Panel, double-click Administrative Tools, and then double-click Active Directory Users and Computers.

Caution

  • After a user's password is reset, some types of information are no longer accessible, including the following:

    • E-mail that is encrypted with the user's public key

    • Internet passwords that are saved on the computer

    • Files that the user has encrypted

    To prevent data loss when you reset a local user account password, use a password reset disk to reset the password. For more information about password reset disks, see Related Topics.

  • Because data can be lost when passwords are reset, use this procedure only if there is no other way to access the account.

Information about functional differences

  • Your server might function differently based on the version and edition of the operating system that is installed, your account permissions, and your menu settings. For more information, see Viewing Help on the Web.

See Also

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