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I have lost administrator password on a windows 7 laptop running bitlocker.
I know bitlocker recovery password for this PC and can access BIOS setup.

I need to reset administrator password without removing HDD from the laptop.

  1. Is there a way to do so without having to decrypt the drive first ?

  2. If not, how can I decrypt the drive given the fact that I cannot login as admin to the machine ?

I am considering to boot Linux on a USB drive and run a copy of Windows 7 from Linux via Virtual box. Then try to decrypt laptop HDD from this copy of Windows 7.

I hope there is an easier way... If not, please tell me if you think this idea will fail or not.

Thank you :-)

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closed as off topic by mdpc, Jenny D, Wesley, Dave M, TheCleaner Apr 1 '13 at 21:42

Questions on Server Fault are expected to relate to server, networking, or related infrastructure administration within the scope defined by the community. Consider editing the question or leaving comments for improvement if you believe the question can be reworded to fit within the scope. Read more about reopening questions here.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

You can use a WinPE USB stick to boot but it must include the winpe-vmi package:

To create an image that can decrypt your first computer you'll need another computer with WAIK installed.

1.1 How to create a WinPE image that suits your needs:

1.2 You should include the winpe-wmi package when adding packages.

Dism /image:C:\winpe_x86\mount /Add-Package /PackagePath:"C:\Program Files\<version>\Tools\PETools\<architecture>\WinPE_FPs\"

Dism /image:C:\winpe_x86\mount /Add-Package /PackagePath:"C:\Program Files\<version>\Tools\PETools\<architecture>\WinPE_FPs\en-us\"

You'll need both: the language neutral and the language specific (en-us) package. version can be Windows OPK or Windows AIK (WAIK).

1.3 Boot your first computer (the one where the password is lost) with WinPE and execute the following command:

cscript %systemroot%\system32\manage-bde.wsf –unlock Volume : -rk PathToExternalKeyFile: \ External Key File Name

If the Recovery Key is damaged or missing, you can still unlock the volume. To do this, type the following command at the command prompt:

cscript %systemroot%\system32\manage-bde.wsf –unlock Volume : -rp Numeric Recovery Password


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Thanks! I now included the essential parts and provided the links for reference. Now it's a better summary of the process. – Yannis Apr 1 '13 at 9:47
@Yannis: Thank you. – Iain Apr 1 '13 at 18:34

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