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Updated on August 17, 2013


Note: This information is not intended for hackers or anyone with malicious intentions. This is for PC technicians only. Amateurs must work under supervision. To effectively use this, you must be well versedwith the usage of command prompt.

I stumbled across this trick when I was asked by a friend to help her recover the forgotten Windows Vista Logon password on her laptop. I tried using the Dreampack and OphCrack password recovery softwares and both failed me. Seriously! I even tried the “Safe Mode” method commonly used in Windows XP but that didn’t work either.

So if you have forgotten your password and don’t have a password recovery software or where the password recovery softwares fail you, follow this trick to get in through the backdoor. This backdoor trick is nothing more than exploiting Windows features used for helping disabled users. It is the “Sticky Keys Trick”. This is what I call it.

I tried this trick first on Windows Vista then on Windows 7 and on both occasions, it worked well for me.

Procedure A

1. Boot up your computer

2. While your computer is booting, press “F2”, “DEL” or whatever key that is to get you into the BIOS Settings screen

3. Go to boot options and adjust your settings so that your computer boots from the CD

4. Save the changes and exit

5. Restart your computer

Procedure B

6. While your computer is restarting, insert Vista installation CD

7. Press any key to boot from the CD

8. Choose your language settings

9. Click “Next” and follow the normal repair procedures

10. On the screen that follows, click “Repair with Command Prompt”

11. On the Command Prompt window type “cd c:\windows\system32”

12. Press “Enter”

13. Type “c:”

14. Press “Enter”

15. Type “ren sethc.exe easy.exe”

16. Press “Enter”

17. Type “ren cmd.exe sethc.exe”

18. Press “Enter”

19. Type “exit”

20. Restart your Computer

Procedure C

21. On the Windows Logon Screen, press the “Shift” key five times repeatedly

Bingo! Instead of that annoying “Would you like to activate the Sticky Keys?” dialog box, you get a command prompt window with system access

22. Once the command prompt window pops up, type “net user administrator /active:yes”

23. Press “Enter”

24. Type “Exit”

25. Restart your Computer

Procedure D

26. Login as Administrator and do whatever changes you wish

27. When done, restart your computer

Procedure E

28. When the Logon Screen appears, press the “Shift” key five times

29. In the command prompt window that appears, type “net user administrator /active:no”

30. Press “Enter”

31. Type “ren sethc.exe cmd.exe”

32. Press “Enter”

33. Type “ren easy.exe sethc.exe”

34. Press “Enter”

35. Type “Exit”

36. Restart your Computer

You should be able to logon normally. Hope you learnt something new from this.


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    • Emmanuel Marosi profile image

      Emmanue Marosi 3 years ago from Madang, Papua New Guinea

      The steps are simple and explained in plain English. If you follow the steps carefully you will get it done. Cheers

    • profile image

      bobvitale 4 years ago

      The sticky keys trick is awful. However the steps are a bit tricky for me as a PC beginner. I prefer to use the PCUnlocker Live CD to reset a forgotten Windows password.

    • Ian Dabasori Hetr profile image

      Ian D Hetri 4 years ago from Papua New Guinea

      Good staff EM.

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