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  1.    29 Mar 2017 #1
    Join Date : Mar 2017
    Posts : 51
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit

    Lost my Administrator Privileges in Windows 10 - need help!


    I am having a serious issue that I need help with asap. Due to several things it seems that I have lost my administrator privileges on my laptop running Windows 10 Pro. I can't remember my administrator password and therefore I can no longer download/uninstall or run programs, like CCleaner. I have tried several suggestions I found online, but nothing has helped.I had changed my login to windows to login using my Microsoft Account. After that I wanted to change the name that was displayed and in my efforts to do that I'm sad to say I must have screwed up. At some point I enabled the administrator account (which I now realize that I probably shouldn't have done). The method I used to do that is shown in the attached image (top image). I tried to disable the administrator account via the same method (see attached bottom image), but again I was denied change. At some point I changed my account to a "Local Account". I now realize that was probably also an error.I tried to restore from a Windows restore point, but I was denied access due to not having Administrator rights. I also tried to restore via a back-up image that I had created a few days ago using AOMEI Backupper, but again I was denied access.A couple of days ago I created an image using Macrium Reflect (Free). On a page that is displayed just before the Windows sign-in page, I now have the option of using Windows 10 or Macrium Relect. I tried clicking on Macrium Reflect and the program opened. I must be an idiot because I couldn't figure out how to restore the image of my C Drive that I had created. Perhaps it had been created wrong, who knows!Any help will be greatly appreciated.

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      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    29 Mar 2017 #2
    Join Date : Aug 2016
    S/E England
    Posts : 4,520
    10 Home x64 (1709) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)

    Quote Originally Posted by Razz View Post
    At some point I enabled the administrator account (which I now realize that I probably shouldn't have done). The method I used to do that is shown in the attached image (top image). I tried to disable the administrator account via the same method (see attached bottom image). At some point I changed my account to a "Local Account". I now realize that was probably also an error.
    Welcome to TenForums @Razz

    If the built-in Administrator was still enabled you could just log in as Administrator and make your account an administrator again. If it is disabled and your account isn't an administrator, there are other ways to enable the Administrator. Option Four in this tutorial tells you how.
    Enable or Disable Elevated Administrator account in Windows 10
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  3.    29 Mar 2017 #3
    Join Date : Mar 2017
    Posts : 51
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by Bree View Post
    If the built-in Administrator was still enabled you could just log in as Administrator and make your account an administrator again.
    How can I find out if the built-in Administrator is still enabled?

    Quote Originally Posted by Bree View Post
    If it is disabled and your account isn't an administrator, there are other ways to enable the Administrator. Option Four in this tutorial tells you how.
    Enable or Disable Elevated Administrator account in Windows 10
    I believe that I would need option 6 because I don't have a Windows 10 installation USB or recovery drive, as per your instructions "If you don't have a Windows 10 installation USB or recovery drive, then you can use OPTION SIX here to boot to Advanced Startup like in the screenshot below".

    I updated to Windows 10 from Windows 7 via the online update.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  4.    29 Mar 2017 #4
    Join Date : Mar 2017
    Posts : 51
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
    Thread Starter

    I just clicked on Option 6 and noticed Option 7. Is Option 7 not what I should use, considering I am able to get into windows (In fact, I am typing this on my laptop) and I can open the command post? I can't remember my administrator password though - is it not needed at some point to change registry keys?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  5.    29 Mar 2017 #5
    Join Date : Aug 2016
    S/E England
    Posts : 4,520
    10 Home x64 (1709) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)

    It's option six you need. A simple explanation of the process:

    Turn on the PC. As soon as you see the Windows logo as its booting up, press and hold the power button until it kills the power.

    Repeat this process.

    The third of fourth time you turn it on it should boot directly to the recovery environment where you can get to the command prompt.
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  6.    29 Mar 2017 #6
    Join Date : Mar 2017
    Posts : 51
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
    Thread Starter

    I am more than willing to do what you say but in order for me to proceed I would like clarification on the following:

    (1) I'm currently able to get into windows and I'm able to open the Command Prompt by right-clicking on the start menu and selecting "Command Prompt". Is this not the same Command Prompt as the Prompt you want me to access via the process you explain above?

    (2) When the Command Prompt opens, do I follow the instructions starting from #2 under Option Four?
    (i.e. 2. In the command prompt, type regedit, and press Enter.
    (3) In order to solve my problem, do I use #11 or #12 under Option Four? In other words, do I need to
    Enable the Built-in Elevated Administrator Account - or - Disable the Built-in Elevated Administrator Account ?

    (4) When I select #11 or #12 (as per your reply), will that allow me to change my current "Local Account" to "Administrator Account" without having to enter a password (as you know I forgot the password)?

    Thank you for your time.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  7.    29 Mar 2017 #7
    Join Date : Aug 2016
    S/E England
    Posts : 4,520
    10 Home x64 (1709) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)

    Let me summarise your problem as I understand it.

    You have changed your account from an administrator to a standard user.
    To do this you have enabled the built-in Administrator, then you tried to disable Administrator again.
    I am not clear if Administrator is now enabled or disable, but have assumed 'disabled'.
    You seem to still be able to log in using your Microsoft account.

    I'm currently able to get into windows and I'm able to open the Command Prompt by right-clicking on the start menu and selecting "Command Prompt". Is this not the same Command Prompt as the Prompt you want me to access via the process you explain above?
    You may be able to open a command prompt, but try opening a Command Prompt (Admin) by right-clicking on Start. If you can do that you already have administrator rights and need do nothing more.

    Now if the Administrator is still enabled your solution is easy. Just log out, then log in as Administrator. You can then reset the password for your account or make it an administrator again.

    Change Account Type in Windows 10
    Change Password of Account in Windows 10

    If the Administrator account is disabled then you can use Option Four to enable it. The 'option six' process I explained above can get you to a command prompt with the necessary rights to be able to use Regedit.

    ...to solve my problem, do I use #11 or #12 under Option Four?
    You want to enable the Administrator account so that when you restart the PC you can log in to it as Administrator in order to make your main account an administrator again. That's step #11.
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  8.    30 Mar 2017 #8
    Join Date : Mar 2017
    Posts : 51
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by Bree View Post
    You may be able to open a command prompt, but try opening a Command Prompt (Admin) by right-clicking on Start. If you can do that you already have administrator rights and need do nothing more.

    You want to enable the Administrator account so that when you restart the PC you can log in to it as Administrator in order to make your main account an administrator again. That's step #11.
    -- When I right-click on Start, I am not able to open the Command Prompt (Admin) without a password. I therefore assume, like you said, that I do not have administrator rights.

    -- So to enable the Administrator account I followed your instructions as per your link. However, when I got to the end and had to change "11" to "10", I see that it is already "10". In other words, the Administrator account is enabled.

    Now I'm confused. If the Administrator account is enabled, then why can't I do anything without having to enter a password?

    Naturally this is a problem because I can't remember the administrator password.

    So what now?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  9.    30 Mar 2017 #9
    Join Date : Aug 2016
    S/E England
    Posts : 4,520
    10 Home x64 (1709) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)

    Quote Originally Posted by Razz View Post
    ...when I got to the end and had to change "11" to "10", I see that it is already "10". In other words, the Administrator account is enabled...

    Naturally this is a problem because I can't remember the administrator password.
    Good. We're getting somewhere. The Administrator account by default has a blank password. Unless you set one yourself you should be OK.

    Log out, this should take you to the lock screen. Click on the lock screen to get to the log in screen. If that doesn't clear the lock screen, you may have set it for 'users have to press Ctrl-Alt-Del to log in'.

    At the log in screen you'll be offered the log in to the account you've just logged out of. At the lower left there should be a list of other available accounts including Administrator. Click on Administrator, leave the password blank and log in. Now you should have full control to make your own account an admin again.

    Once you are sorted out, I would recommend making another local account as well. Make it an admin and you can use it if you need to do similar admin work on your PC in the future. You must always have at least one admin account on the PC, as you have found to your cost. Having a second admin account available for emergencies reduces the risk of accidentally ending up without one. It also means you can disable the Administrator account when you have finished using it.
      My ComputersSystem Spec
  10.    30 Mar 2017 #10
    Join Date : Mar 2017
    Posts : 51
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
    Thread Starter

    Still not able to gain administrator access. In the past I had tried to not enter any password (i.e. leave it blank) when prompted for administrator rights and it didn't work. Today it's the same, still no administrator rights.

    There is indeed a list at the lower left on my login screen (my own account and Administrator). This is not new, it has been there since I developed the issue I have now (I forgot to tell you that). It never used to be there previous to my issue.

    I had clicked on the Administrator account a couple of days ago and it did exactly the same as it did today. When I click on it, the Administrator login screen appears and the tiny circle goes round and round for approx. 2 minutes and then a black screen appears. It has now been about 20 minutes and the screen is still black (I'm writing this on my wife's laptop).

    Is it possible that some virus/malware has corrupted one or more system files?

    What do you suggest now? Thanks again for your help.

    EDIT: Just rebooted my laptop and now I don't have an option at login - i.e. it goes directly to the Administrator login and then shortly to a black screen again. I turned my laptop off and on several times and the same thing is happening!
    UPDATE: I hit Ctrl+Alt+Delete and was able to switch users.
    Last edited by Razz; 30 Mar 2017 at 12:17.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 
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