Want to know our #1 pick? Here’s the best Windows password recovery software in 2021:
- PassFab 4WinKey — PassFab 4WinKey is my top choice because of its consistent and simple interface that recovers passwords at high speeds. You can trust this software to recover your Windows password. (Enter XDF-24F at checkout to get 10% off the best Windows password recovery of 2021.)
Suppose you are unable to get into your Windows computer because you forgot your password, but you’re in urgent need to access your files. You can try your best to recall the password, but what happens if you’ve entirely misremembered your passcode? What can you do now after you’re wholly locked out of your device?
You won’t need to take your laptop or desktop to a repair shop as long as you have another Mac or PC to download a Windows password recovery tool. With a few clicks, you can successfully remove or reset a local and admin password, or delete and create a Windows account in minutes.
I made sure that all of the following Windows password recovery software can successfully reset complicated and straightforward passcodes. To ensure these programs produce nothing but the best results, I tested to guarantee that all of them were easy to use, had multiple comprehensive options, were in a competitive price range, and were compatible with all current and most past Windows versions.
Here’s a Short Summary of the Best Windows Password Recovery in 2021
- 1.🥇 PassFab 4WinKey — #1 best Windows password recovery software of 2021.
- 2.🥈 iSunshare Windows Password Genius — Comes with a Raid version.
- 3.🥉 PCUnlocker — Offers the most amount of options in its standard version.
- 4. Passper WinSenior — For a low price of $29.95 a month you receive all of the products.
- 5. Ophcrack — A complicated but effective free recovery tool.
- 6. Offline NT Password & Registry Editor — Free Windows password recovery tool that resets all tested passwords, but takes a few minutes to understand its interface.
1.🥇 PassFab 4WinKey
PassFab 4WinKey is a simple to use software that removes and resets account passwords, deletes accounts, and creates new accounts all without reinstalling the Windows computer system. After losing your Windows password, the last thing you want is for the entire computer to lose its data. Thankfully, this Windows password recovery doesn’t require you to reinstall your operating system.
For free, PassFab 4WinKey will create a Windows Password Reset Disk on a CD or DVD-ROM disc on both Windows or macOS. Simply place one in your CD drive, and the program will write a boot disk in 5 to 10 minutes. After this process is complete, you can place that boot disk in the computer that’s locked, and the boot disk will remove the password.
However, you cannot actually use the disk or USB drive in boot mode without paying for the standard edition at the minimum because once you attempt to reset a Windows password, it will prompt you to a payment screen.
PassFab 4WinKey has 4 paid editions, but only the ultimate edition lets you take advantage of all of its features. The standard, professional, and enterprise will let you remove admin/guest local account users’ passwords, though. Standard can only support CD/DVD, while the rest can use a USB flash drive to download the boot disk.
Since most new computers don’t have a CD-ROM drive, you’ll have to pay $29.95 at the minimum to unlock your Windows password with a USB thumb drive. Keep in mind that regardless of the method you use, it will be formatted to make room for the boot program.
- Access Your Locked Computer in 3 Steps: To access your locked computer, simply download PassFab 4WinKey to another PC/Mac, create a password reset disk, then place the boot disk or USB in your locked computer.
- Unlocks Windows Sign-in Options: It doesn’t matter how you log into your computer, PassFab 4WinKey will be able to unlock all sign-in options for Windows 10 Pro and Windows 10 Home systems, including Hello Fingerprint, Face, PIN and more.
- 4 Tiered Price Options: Although you can create a boot disk for free, you will need the standard edition to remove admin/guest local account user passwords. Ultimate edition will give you unique features like resetting local user passwords, resting account user passwords, and creating or deleting an administrator account.
- Powerful Compatibility: PassFab 4WinKey is compatible with Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, XP, and with servers 2019, 2012, 2008, 2003, 2000, and SBS 2011 on the professional edition or higher. This software will also work on macOS systems 10.15, 10.14, 10.13, 10.12, 10.11, 10.10, 10.9, and 10.8.
Thanks to PassFab 4WinKey fast password recovery tools, you’ll be able to quickly and securely regain access to your locked Windows computer in minutes. Read our PassFab 4WinKey review here.
For anyone who has forgotten their Windows password, you can use iSunshare Windows Password Genius to recover the domain and local admin passwords in a few minutes. iSunshare Windows Password Genius uses multiple user-friendly prompts to guide you as you make the boot disk, place it into your computer, and proceed to unlock the Windows password via the boot screen.
iSunshare Windows Password Genius doesn’t require you to reinstall Windows after password recovery, but it will ask you to reformat the CD or USB drive needed to place the booting software on. To get started, download the software on a different Windows computer and choose between a CD, DVD-ROM disk, or a USB drive and click Begin Burning. In less than 3 minutes, you’ll have a completed booting disk or USB drive.
Although you can make a rebooting disk for free, you will need to purchase one of the 4 paid versions to remove or reset a local administrator or other user passwords on Windows.
iSunshare Windows Password Genius has standard, professional, and advanced software versions, but the standard will give you access to most of what you need. Standard edition will let you create either a CD/DVD or a USB flash drive disk, and can remove and reset a local administrator password. Standard can also create a new local admin account for $19.95.
If you have a Raid computer that requires access, you will need to buy the Raid version of the software. The Raid version is also the most comprehensive program with the most options, second to the advanced edition.
- Three Steps to Reset a Forgotten Windows Password: All you need to do to gain full access back into your computer is to create a Windows password reset disk, boot the locked computer with the reset disk, and reset the Windows login password.
- Recovers Passwords for all Windows and all User Accounts: iSunshare Windows Password Genius can recover all local administrator and other user passwords as well as domain user and admin passwords. You can also create a new administrator or remove or reset Windows passwords safely and easily.
- Multiple Options Including Raid Version: The standard edition alone comes with the ability to make a CD/DVD or USB bootable application to remove/reset Windows local administrator and other user passwords. Professional and Advanced add on to these features, while the Raid version enables you to unlock Raid computers.
- Supports all Windows Operating Systems: Supports Windows 10, 8.1, 8, Windows 7, Vista, XP, 2000, NT, etc. and all Windows servers. You can download the boot disk on a Mac computer if you don’t have an additional Windows computer.
iSunshare Windows Password Genius is backed by multiple great reviews, a 30-day Money Back Guarantee, and is praised for its rapid service. There’s no reason not to give them a try! Read our iSunshare Windows Password Genius Review here.
PCUnlocker is a bootable utility that bypasses and resets forgotten administrator or other user passwords on the Windows operating systems. A significant positive with PCUnlocker is its ability to reset a local administrator’s passwords, bypass passwords without changing the current one, and unlock disabled, locked or expired Windows account on it’s cheapest standard version.
Downloading PCUnlocker is more complicated than some of the software on this list, but the website offers an easy-to-use guide for anyone who’s lost. When you download the full version, you have to self-extract a .zip file, then click the file pcunlocker.iso. After this, insert a blank CD or USB flash drive and download the ISO2Disc program to start burning the boot software.
From there, PCUnlocker acts the same as other Windows password reset software on this list. Insert the boot disk or USB drive into the locked computer and enter boot mode. The computer will take a minute or two to load the WinPE operating system.
As long as you have purchased one of the 3 paid editions, you can then select which user password you want to reset. The process took between 10-15 minutes.
PCUnlocker will need to reformat the reboot disk or USB drive, but it won’t delete data on your Windows computer on standard, professional, and enterprise versions. At $19.95 per month for the standard edition, you’ll be able to use most of the software, but only Enterprise can reset Windows domain administrator and user passwords and unlock disabled, locked, or expired Active Directory accounts.
- Fast, Quick, and Simple: While PCUnlocker takes more than 3 steps, it still rivals its competitors in its quickness. It took approximately 10-15 minutes to download the software, burn the boot disk, and reset my locked computer.
- Plenty of Extra Features: Along with the features mentioned, PCUnlocker can also boot your locked PC from the network using PXE and boot UEFI-based computers from CD or USB drive – but they’re only available on the enterprise version.
- 3 Low-Priced Software Versions: Although the enterprise version is $49.95, it includes all of the software’s features. When compared to other software on the market, PCUnlocker is incredibly well-priced as other complete versions of similar software could run you $69.95 or more.
- System Requirements for Windows: PCUnlocker will work flawlessly with Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, XP, 2019, 2016, 2012, 2008, 2003 (32-bit & 64-bit).
PCUnlocker offers free technical support to all of its users, so if you ever run into any problem or issue, you can contact them at any time.
When you need a Windows password reset tool, Passper WinSenior can help you almost instantly. Whether you need to reset/remove a Windows password or delete/create a Windows account, you can guarantee that this award-winning software will do the trick quickly, efficiently, and with a 100% guaranteed recovery rate.
Passper WinSenior is a one-stop solution to handle Windows passwords and accounts, as it provides a comprehensive solution to delete, create, reset, or remove accounts and passwords. After downloading the software, Passper WinSenior immediately takes you to the password recovery screen. Choose between CD/DVD or USB flash drive to download the boot.
As always, you won’t need to reinstall Windows once you use the boot, but installing the software onto a CD/DVD-ROM or a USB drive will reformat it. After downloading the boot using another computer, you can insert the disk or USB drive into the locked computer. Enter the boot mode and follow the directions on the screen.
Passper WinSenior doesn’t have separate versions but instead has different plans that all offer the same features. You can choose to pay monthly, yearly, or purchase a one-time lifetime plan. The cheapest purchasable plan is $29.95 monthly.
If you’re unhappy Passper WinSenior for any reason, you can speak to their 24/7 free technical support line and ask for their 30-Day Money-Back guarantee.
- Easy to Operate and Fast Recovery: It’s difficult to reset your Windows password if you don’t know it, luckily Passper Winenior makes it easy! Just follow their 3-step removal or recovery process, and you’ll be able to access your Windows computer!
- 100% Success Rate: Passper WinSenior ensures a 100% success rate due to the technologies advanced features, its professional team on staff, and it’s wide range of experience in regards to password recovery.
- Only One Version With All its Features: You won’t have to sift through multiple versions of the same product because all paid versions come with the same features. Just pick how often you wish to pay: monthly, yearly, or a lifetime license.
- Tech Specs for Passper WinSenior: Ensure that you have Windows 10, Windows 8.1, 8, 7, XP, and Vista to operate this software. Passper WinSenior also supports all Windows PCs, laptops, and tablets.
After entering the Preinstallation Environment, Passper WinSenior will remove/reset a password or delete/create a Windows account in less than 5 minutes – making it one of the fastest Windows password recovery software on the market. Read Passper WinSenior Review here.
Ophcrack is a free Windows password cracker based on rainbow tables. A rainbow table is a precomputed table for caching the output of cryptographic hash functions, usually for cracking password hashes. Ophcrack has been a name-stay in the Windows password recovery tool line of products and has remained helpful to users since the 90s.
Although Ophcrack is helpful, I want to be clear that it’s a pretty complicated software that will need some previous computing knowledge to take advantage of. Upon loading the software, you may be overwhelmed with the number of options present to you, and you may not know where to start -especially when your first hurdle is extracting the .zip file.
After a bit of tweaking and looking up tutorials, I noticed that Ophcrack works similarly to PCUnlocker, where you need to download an ISO-File and burn it to a CD. Then, you insert the CD-ROM into your computer, and it takes a total of 25 minutes to download the boot and upload it onto your computer.
Due to the fact, Ophcrack is a free software; it can come with a few more negatives than the other paid programs on this list. Mainly, Ophcrack isn’t user-friendly. It takes a while to figure out the software – especially if you have no prior computing experience. I’ve read through customer reviews that it took hours to comprehend this software.
However, if you can make Ophcrack function, you receive brute-force modules for simple passwords, audit mode, CSV export, real-time graphs to analyze passwords, and loads hashes from encrypted SAM recovered from a Windows partition all for free.
- Free Tables for Windows XP, Vista, and 7: If you’re using the software on a Windows XP, Vista, or 7 you will pay no cost. On older operating systems like 98, 95, and NT, I found that the software doesn’t function correctly despite the fact it was created using an older OS, so stick to higher Windows versions.
- Produces Alphanumeric Passwords in Minutes: After you get past the unfriendly user experience, you’ll find that Ophcrack is incredibly reliable with a 99.9% recovery rate. Once you download the ISO-File and insert the disk in your locked computer, you will have full access back into your Windows device in under 30 minutes.
- A Plethora of Features and Benefits: Along with cracking LM and NTLM Windows hashes, which is necessary for password recovery, Ophcrack can also go into audit mode and CSV export, use brute-force modules for simple passwords, and more.
- Available on All Platforms – Including Linux: Ophcrack can run on all Windows, Linux/Unix, and Mac OS X operating systems.
Although Ophcrack may be challenging to understand at first, you’ll receive plenty of features for free, including the ability to recover passwords. Read Ophcrack Review here.
If you thought Ophcrack operated entirely different from the others on this list, Offline Windows Password & Registry Editor will come as a shock. Despite the many differences, Offline Windows Password & Registry Editor is still really easy to use as long as you carefully follow the instructions the software creator placed on the website.
First, you need to scroll down on the home page and find the Download header. You can select from the CD release (the USB release is the same, it just requires more instruction) and the floppy release. Download the CD release and unzip the file and find the ISO image file called cd??????.iso. This is what needs to be burned on the CD or USB.
After downloading the necessary drives to a CD or USB, place it in your locked computer and enter the boot menu. Keep the walkthrough handy because some of the functions may or may not compute automatically. You can also consult the FAQ section for common problems.
Just like Ophcrack, Offline Windows Password & Registry Editor is a free software except the latter has a descriptive walkthrough to bypass specific issues. Although you’ll need to write the boot disk and reset your password entirely on your own, the software is free, which is a massive positive – especially because Offline Windows Password & Registry Editor actually works.
Keep in mind that this software is open source, so it isn’t as well supported as the other paid software on this list. Still, Offline Windows Password & Registry Editor is a comprehensive piece of software that will help you reset most Windows admin passwords.
- 100% Free With Available Walkthroughs: Offline Windows Password & Registry Editor is 100% free, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be confused as to how to operate the software despite how complicated it is. The website sports multiple walkthroughs and FAQs to guide you through the process.
- Resets Passwords Reliably: From user reviews and my own experience, I found that this software will reset passwords in 25-30 minutes. I also found that the length or complication of the password makes little difference in time.
- An Advanced User Pade for Registry Tools: The creator is forthcoming about the source code they use and various information about the software’s current and past versions. This can be useful for past users who need a refresher on the new features, while new users can use this information to create their own boot disk.
- Supported and Tested on Most Windows Versions: Offline Windows Password & Registry Editor will work with Windows NT3.5 to Win8.1 with 64-bit versions available. I have tested it on Windows 10, and it did work, but the software was slightly glitchy. This software will also support most server versions.
If you want a more hands-on approach in creating a boot disk, Offline Windows Password & Registry Editor is the perfect free software for Windows password recovery. Read Offline NT Password and Registry Editor Review here.
Comparison of the Best Windows Password Recovery Software in 2021
|Windows Password Recovery Software||Windows and Mac?||Easy of Use||Speed||Unlocks Simple and Complicated Passwords?||Windows Compatibility|
|PassFab 4WinKey||Windows and Mac||Easy||5 - 10 Minutes||Yes||All|
|iSunshare Windows Password Genius||Windows and Mac||Easy||3 Minutes||Yes||All|
|PCUnlocker||Windows||Medium||10 - 15 Minutes||Yes||All|
|Passper WinSenior||Windows||Very-Easy||5 Minutes||Yes||All|
|Ophcrack||Windows, Mac and Linux||Very-Hard||25 - 30 Minutes||Yes||Most|
|Offline NT Password & Registry Editor||Windows||Hard||25-30 Minutes||Yes||Most|
How We Tested and Picked the Best Windows Password Recovery Software in 2021
When I chose the Windows password recovery software on this list, I ensured that I thoroughly tested the programs and installed the boot disks that were necessary to complete the password recovery process. Although other internet tools may be useful, I found that the picks on this list are better than any other software I tested.
- Comprehensive Options: There are multiple options available that claim to help you recover your Windows password, but not all of them will give you all of the options you’re looking for. Choosing the right software from this massive catalog is a difficult task; that’s why I compiled a list of software that can deliver a wide variety of options. If the software doesn’t provide multiple options, it had to be free, or the features within the program had to be comparable to the price of the product.
- Ease of Use: Another significant aspect that should be considered is the usability of the application. There are many tools online with a hard to run interface that may make users stop using the product. An easy-to-use interface takes a limited amount of knowledge to use and has few steps to initiate. Two software on this list: Ophcrack and Offline NT Password & Registry Editor, are difficult to use. However, they are both free, and there are multiple walkthroughs online that can assist you with completing the boot disk necessary to reset a password.
- Compatibility with Windows Versions: All of our picks are compatible with most, if not all, Windows versions. Some software are also compatible with Mac and Linux. The programs on this list usually work with Windows XP or higher, with one working as far back as Windows NT. However, if you’re looking for a tool that works with modern Windows operating systems, you’ll find that all of them are compatible.
- Cost of Software: The software cost is another influential part that can affect whether the customer will pay for the product. If the software is designed explicitly for enterprisers, you can expect them to pay higher rates, but an individual needs a lower bar of entry for what will likely be a one-time use of the product. I ensured that the software’s price was either low or free, so that most customers could take advantage of the program’s features.
FAQs for Best Windows Password Recovery Software in 2021
🖥️ Is Windows password recovery software legal?
Downloading a Windows password recovery software, installing the boot software on a CD-ROM, or a USB drive, then placing said boot software on a separate computer isn’t illegal as long as you’re doing so for personal use. Enterprises can also remove passwords on multiple computers as long as these computers belong to the business or company.
If you’re using this software to break into another user’s computer at any time, you are committing an illegal act. Never use any password recovery or removal software unlawfully, or it could be placed on your permitted record if caught.
🔒 Do you always need 2 computers to download the boot software?
Without a boot disk, you won’t be able to unlock your computer that has a password on it that you have forgotten or don’t know. You have to first download a boot disk from another computer, whether it’s a Windows or Mac, to remove or recover your password.
Unless you already have a boot disk that you’ve written before you couldn’t get access to a computer, you will need two computers to complete this process. If you don’t have a separate computer, you will need to purchase another one or borrow one from a friend.
❓ Can you keep your data once you remove a Windows password?
Yes, you can keep your data once you remove a Windows password. Unless you want to delete all of the data on the locked computer from the boot directory, no software on this list will delete any of your data except for the administration password or profile you wish to delete so you can gain access to your Windows computer.
⌛ How long will it take to reset your password on a Windows computer
These best Windows password reset tools take various times to reset or recover your passwords completely. From my experience, the paid, user-friendly programs tend to take around 5-15 minutes to recover a password, while the free versions will take much longer.
While free versions of password recovery software do exist, they often take longer because of the time it takes to learn the program. I would recommend paying for a user-friendly version, or you may spend over an hour figuring out open-sourced software before even getting to the process of downloading the boot disk and recovering the password.
When you forget your Windows password, it can be frustrating to figure out how to gain access back into your computer. However, all of the Windows password recovery software on this list are capable of recovering your passcode in under an hour and will have a 99.9% success rate. Now you won’t need to spend hundreds of dollars at a repair shop resetting and potentially removing all of the data on your computer just to remove your Windows password.