xp recover - admin password

Discussions around the setup, operation, replacement, and disposal of clerk computers, not to include using MLS
cougarfan-p40
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xp recover - admin password

Postby cougarfan-p40 » Wed Aug 05, 2009 7:51 pm

Our stake computer recently has been randomly shutting down and going into a continuous reboot cycle, but after power off will eventually boot into XP.

Now it is going to the recover console and says that we have a corrupt driver file and to use the XP setup CD to recover the drive.

When doing the recover we are prompted for the admin password. This computer was setup before me or the technology clerk were called so we do not know the admin password.

Any ideas on how to get the admin password and recover the drive?

jdlessley
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Postby jdlessley » Wed Aug 05, 2009 9:37 pm

cougarfan wrote:Our stake computer recently has been randomly shutting down and going into a continuous reboot cycle, but after power off will eventually boot into XP.

Now it is going to the recover console and says that we have a corrupt driver file and to use the XP setup CD to recover the drive.

When doing the recover we are prompted for the admin password. This computer was setup before me or the technology clerk were called so we do not know the admin password.

Any ideas on how to get the admin password and recover the drive?
I think trying to recover the corrupt driver is the least of your concerns. The random shutdowns sound a lot like the bad capacitor issue already discussed in theDell GX270s with bad capacitors thread. If the computer in question is a Dell GX270 you may want to inspect the capacitors to see if they are in fact bulging. If they are, computer replacement is the best solution. If the computer is not a Dell GX270, then there are a myriad of reasons a computer will behave as you describe. Some are hardware related and some are software or operating system related. Failing hard drives will cause the same problems.

If you are certain that the shutdown and reboot issue is not hardware related then continuing to attempt to repair Windows may be possible.

But back to the admin password. The administrator password is most likely the same password you use to access Windows XP on a daily basis if the computer is setup in accordance with Church policy and procedure identified in the Desktop 5.5 installation instructions.
JD Lessley
Have you tried finding your answer on the LDS.org Help Center page or the LDSTech wiki?

russellhltn
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Postby russellhltn » Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:31 pm

The daily login does have administrator privileges, but is not the local Administrator. I don't think that password was ever given out.

I agree, the problem is very much like that GX270 capacitor problem. Out of the 9 GX270s in our stake, only one original remains. The rest all died.
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aebrown
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Postby aebrown » Wed Aug 05, 2009 10:46 pm

RussellHltn wrote:The daily login does have administrator privileges, but is not the local Administrator. I don't think that password was ever given out.


The Desktop 5.5 instructions specifically told the Stake Technology Specialist to set up a separate Windows administrator account. The Dell 740 instructions say the same thing. So if those instructions were followed, there should be a local password, not one set by the Church. But if the previous STS didn't hand off his passwords and he can't be contacted, then that administrative account may not help in this situation.

But the daily login is the main Windows administrator account (at least for Desktop 5.5 machines), so it should work, as jdlessley indicated.

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Mikerowaved
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Postby Mikerowaved » Thu Aug 06, 2009 1:51 am

Alan_Brown wrote:The Desktop 5.5 instructions specifically told the Stake Technology Specialist to set up a separate Windows administrator account.
...
But the daily login is the main Windows administrator account (at least for Desktop 5.5 machines), so it should work, as jdlessley indicated.

Unfortunately, when using the recovery console, you must have the actual password to the local username "Administrator". This disqualifies both the alternate STS admin account (that we assume was created) and the daily login account, even though they both happen to have administrator privileges, they are not the Administrator account. AFAIK, that password was never given out, nor is it likely, as I'm pretty sure it's the same on all Desktop 5.5 PC's.

As far as fixing your problem, I sent you a PM, as the level of detail of what I recommend is a bit much for the forum.

Mike
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russellhltn
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Postby russellhltn » Thu Aug 06, 2009 2:40 am

Alan_Brown wrote:But the daily login is the main Windows administrator account (at least for Desktop 5.5 machines), so it should work, as jdlessley indicated.


I just checked - it's not. THE admin account (as defined by Local Security Policy) for a D5.5 computer is DandC89.

Reading the instructions for a new 740, it's not clear to me what THE local admin is as I don't have the setup prompts memorized. But it does seem to give the password. As for the instructions for a 740 already in service, it explicitly has the user rename the Administrator account to be the daily use account.

All other Admin logins belong to the Administrators group, which is usually good enough for most functions, but are not THE local admin.

Reading over the instructions for using the recovery console, it's not clear to me what's required. Some instructions say anyone in the administrators group, but the actual process says "enter administrator password" not "enter administrator ID and password".

However, if this is a Desktop 5.5 machine, there is a recovery procedure that's part of the Desktop itself. It will restore the C drive to the last backup. If no one has ever done a backup, then it will restore to a fresh Desktop. Either way, the restore will rollback or even wipe out MLS, MLS data and most likely any MLS backups saved to the hard drive. (as well as anything else stored on the C drive.) It shouldn't affect "My Documents" since those should be on the D drive.
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Postby jdlessley » Thu Aug 06, 2009 12:48 pm

I have to correct my original post regarding the administrator account. When Windows XP is first installed it prompts for a password for the Administrator account. This is the password the recovery console is asking for. When viewing the user accounts using the control panel applet Computer Management (compmgmt.msc) there are three columns in the right pane labeled Name, Full Name, and Description. For administrative computers imaged with a Desktop 5.5 installation, or setup by Church headquarters prior to shipping, the account with the Name of DandC89, Full Name "" (blank), and Description of 'Built-in account for administering the computer/domain', is this administrator account. Unfortunately the password for this account is not available to the field and only known by Church headquarters.

Hopefully Microwaved can provide a solution that does not involve shipping the computer to headquarters.
JD Lessley
Have you tried finding your answer on the LDS.org Help Center page or the LDSTech wiki?

cougarfan-p40
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computer woes

Postby cougarfan-p40 » Sun Aug 09, 2009 5:08 pm

Just a quick update.

The computer is a GX270.

It was scheduled to be replaced this year and we informed the FM group of its demise and they are going to expedite a replacement. (maybe another week or two).

My main concern is to revive the computer long enough to get a backup of our documents, MLS data, etc.

Since the computer will not boot beyond the recovery console, there really isn't much I can do to look at accounts or passwords.

In order to recover the drive I need to run the windows setup CD which requires the admin password (which I assume was setup when the Windows XP was originally installed several years ago.)

I will try DandC89 and see if that works.

jdlessley
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Postby jdlessley » Sun Aug 09, 2009 6:55 pm

cougarfan wrote:Just a quick update.

The computer is a GX270.

It was scheduled to be replaced this year and we informed the FM group of its demise and they are going to expedite a replacement. (maybe another week or two).

My main concern is to revive the computer long enough to get a backup of our documents, MLS data, etc.

Since the computer will not boot beyond the recovery console, there really isn't much I can do to look at accounts or passwords.

In order to recover the drive I need to run the windows setup CD which requires the admin password (which I assume was setup when the Windows XP was originally installed several years ago.)

I will try DandC89 and see if that works.
I good method to recover the files on the drive is to temporarily install the hard drive on another Windows XP machine (perhaps a ward administrative computer) and access the needed files that way. I'm not sure if the low profile Dell GX270s and GX280s have the capability for another hard drive though. If that is true then perhaps using a family history center computer, if one is nearby, would work. That assumes they are not using the same type computers.
JD Lessley
Have you tried finding your answer on the LDS.org Help Center page or the LDSTech wiki?

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Postby russellhltn » Sun Aug 09, 2009 8:53 pm

cougarfan wrote:My main concern is to revive the computer long enough to get a backup of our documents, MLS data, etc.


As for the computer itself, "It's dead, Jim". ;)

What I've done is use a USB to IDE adapter and just connect the old drive as a external hard drive on the new machine. An external drive enclosure could do the same thing.

I can't remember for sure if the new machines have an IDE interface. If they do, you could just do a "tack job" and connect it up just long enough to copy things over.

I would strongly recommend you not try and do anything about reviving the drive in the old computer. If it's become this bad, it won't hold together long enough to do a recovery. It may even scramble the disk.
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