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Solved: Can't seem to access "Administrator" account in XP Pro


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1101doc's Avatar
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08-May-2007, 08:14 PM #1
Solved: Can't seem to access "Administrator" account in XP Pro
I recently acquired a "new" laptop from PC Exchange. This unit was "off-lease" and came with 1.6 Pentium M and 1 gig of Ram. Both twice what I had on my previous machine. Needless to say, I love the performance. I originally ordered it without an OS, but it arrived with XP Pro installed. I have subsequently discovered through examination of the files that although the system had been "cleaned up," this is not a fresh XP Pro install, but rather the copy that was onboard when released from whatever corp was using it.

At present I am running ZA free, AVG free, and A-Squared AntiMalware.(full-time client)
Full checks by Ad-Aware, Spybot, and SuperAntiSpyware come up as clean as AVG and A2.
The new AVG antirootkit also shows clear.

I cannot seem to access the main Administrator account. Curiously, when I boot to safe mode, unlike my experience with XP Home, I am not asked to log into any particular account, but rather the system automatically loads my user account complete with custom toolbars.

Yesterday I activated the Guest account, and created a new 'Admin" account for myself. On next boot, the system did not stop to let me choose, but rather booted straight through to my normal user account. If I log off, I arrive at the screen where I can choose accounts, but there the "double ctrl-alt-del" action does not raise the Administrator account.

I do have a functional Group Policy editor. (Actually, everything else is functional) And currently I am not experiencing any difficulties with the system. But. I don't feel comfortable in command without access to the "Administrator" account. I have discovered the registry edit to add the "Administrator" account to the "Welcome Screen," but since my system doesn't seem to feel it necessary to stop there, I'm not sure that that will be sufficient

My "Boot.ini" file from msconfig reads as follows:
[boot loader]
timeout=0
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(1)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Professional"/noexecute=optin /fastdetect

At this point I am not sure what is simply XP Pro function, and what might have been set as default by the previous users. I also am not sure about exactly what to do to gain full control. Would selecting the option to require users to enter name and password be helpful?
Bob Cerelli's Avatar
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09-May-2007, 08:12 PM #2
If you look in the Control Panel / User Accounts, is there an administrator account listed?

Does is show when you right click on My Computer / Manage / Local Users and Groups?
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09-May-2007, 08:31 PM #3
Solved: Can't seem to access "Administrator" account in XP Pro-admin.general.jpg

Solved: Can't seem to access "Administrator" account in XP Pro-admin.profile.jpg

The Admin account does not show from Control Panel>User accounts.

The admin account IS listed under "Local users and groups" in the Computer Management console. It is not marked as disabled.

When checking "Properties" for the Admin account, under the "general" tab it has no name, and under the "profile" tab, there is nothing in the boxes. see attached jpgs .
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09-May-2007, 08:34 PM #4
When you enter ctrl-alt-del-del, can you simply type in the name "administrator"
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09-May-2007, 08:38 PM #5
Sorry, couldn't get the jpgs to attach. When I ctrl-alt-del I just get Taskmanager. the second "del" doesn't do anything.
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09-May-2007, 08:52 PM #6
here are the images of the Admin account "properties" from the computer Management console:
http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t...oc/Admin-1.jpg
http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t...1doc/Admin.jpg

Under the "Member of.." tab it just says "administrators."
Bob Cerelli's Avatar
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09-May-2007, 08:55 PM #7
If you do a start / run / control userpasswords2,
is it checked to autologon?
Does the administrator account show up there?
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09-May-2007, 09:03 PM #8
Here is first screen of "control userpasswords2"
http://i159.photobucket.com/albums/t...eraccounts.jpg
I see no option to select/deselect "Autologon."
Bob Cerelli's Avatar
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09-May-2007, 09:29 PM #9
Look a little closer

Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer

Right now that is unchecked so they don't need to enter a user name and password to use this computer. One account is automatically logging on and it is not the one you want.

So check it so users must enter a user name and password. Then see if you can log on as adminstrator.

Also might change how users log on so you don't use the welcome screen. This should also give you the opportunity to enter in "administrator" for the user account.
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09-May-2007, 09:38 PM #10
Which is what I wondered about at the end of my original post. I will enable that function and reboot. Will let you know about the result soom.
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09-May-2007, 10:03 PM #11
It worked as I assume XP pro is designed to. Booted to small rectangular dialog in which I could type an account profile name. typed in administrator and logged into a new account which XP activated for me. On log out I was back at the type name and password dialog. I guess what I was looking for was the XP Home "Welcome" screen where I could click on the account into which I wanted to log for that session. Is that function not available in Pro?
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09-May-2007, 10:11 PM #12
Glad that worked.

If you now want to see the administrator account at login with the welcome screen, which you can't do in normal mode with XP Home:

If you want to hide or unhide the names of users that are displayed on the initial logon screen:

1. Start Regedit
2. Go to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Microsoft \ Windows NT \ CurrentVersion \ Winlogon \ SpecialAccounts \ UserList
3. Add a DWORD with the name of the user account you want to hide
4. Make sure it has a value of 0
5. If there is an existing account, you can unhide it by giving it a value of 1

http://www.onecomputerguy.com/window...m#hiding_logon
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09-May-2007, 10:17 PM #13
Bob-- Thank-you so much for your time and effort. Just recieved an e-mail from a friend with whom I had disscussed the situation, and he reminded me to check tweak UI. It had been set to "autologon" my account. Disabled that, and now my installation stops at the familiar "log-in screen" where I can choose the account I want to use. Now I have the ability to control access and use the "Admin account as needed. Thanks again for your assistance. I owe you one--call on me anytime.
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