My Windows 7 password is not working, so naturally, I'm locked out of my computer/life. If my computer worked, I would continue googling for an answer. Unfortunately, this vintage Dell desktop I'm using is trying my patience.
Details: Acer netbook, windows 7, using usb keyboard (as always, since I prefer it to the netbook keyboard; anyway, for the past couple of months the netbook keyboard hasn't been working reliably). I am the only user of this computer and the only one who has had access to if for at least a week.
Situation: I left the room long enough for the computer to go to sleep. When I touched the keyboard, I got the message re unexpected shutdown (don't remember the exact words, but it's a Windows classic) and the option to restart in safe mode, etc. I selected the recommended "start normally" and everything was fine up to the Windows screen. When I entered my password (a very simple password that I use for every account not connected to anything sensitive), I got "incorrect password" and a prompt that did not match my usual log in password.
WTF part: The prompt refers to my kids. Over the years I've used a few variations of their initials and birth years as passwords. (OK, Homeland Security - knock yourself out.) I don't remember setting up an account on this computer, which I've had for 3 years, with that info - although, obviously, I must have. The point is, I certainly never log in under that password - I have full admin rights with my regular log in name/password.
What I've tried/am trying:
- every variation of the kids' info that I've ever used as a password and more - I truly don't believe I could enter a password that would satisfy the system.
- as I mentioned, the built-in keyboard isn't working, but I've tried using the on-screen keyboard, in addition to the usb keyboard that I usually use (and I'm using right now, so I know it works).
- it's not the 'caps lock' key.
- resetting the system clock to before I bought the netbook and setup the Windows password made no difference.
- starting in safe mode made no difference.
- currently looking into the "take ownership" link in a previous askmefi, although this appears to be a long shot.
Why this is about to drive me round the proverbial bend:
- this happened about a year ago, but I don't remember how I fixed it. I've been meaning to disable the password feature ever since, but never got around to it.
- from my brief google search I learned that I this situation could be easily remedied, had a created a password disk when I was able.
- I'm a grown-up (and then some), so I regularly back up my data - in fact, I had done just that about 4 days ago. Unfortunately, just 2 days ago, I downloaded my website files and databases because I wanted to move everything to a cheaper host. So, worst case, I haven't lost anything, but retrieving the website info will require re-upping with former host.
Christ, what a crappy day.
Any help from you all will be greatly appreciated.