How to Reset the Password on an HP Laptop

Get back to Windows when it locks you out

What to Know

  • Use Microsoft’s Password Recovery steps to reset your password.
  • Have someone else log in who has an administrative account (that account type can reset passwords).
  • Commercial Password Reset keys are a viable alternative.

This guide will explain how to reset or recover your Windows 10 password so that you can unlock it, as well as explain how to bypass the login screen altogether.

How Do You Unlock an HP Laptop if You Forgot the Password?

Microsoft Account

Forgetting your Windows 10 password isn’t the end of the world, and it’s relatively easy to recover if you’re using a Microsoft Account. As long as you have access to your Microsoft account email, and, if necessary, a two-factor authentication system, then you can use these steps to recover your password using the Microsoft Account recovery service.

Local Windows Account

If you’re using a local Windows account, Windows 10 version 1803 and newer have the option of recovery questions too, so use those if they’re available. If you don’t have them or are using an older version of Windows, there are still some options you can use to recover or change the password. The easiest is to use a previously created password-reset disk or USB drive. If you want to make one of those now, follow Microsoft’s instructions to make a reset disk.

  1. Try to login with any kind of password, then when you’re told it’s incorrect, select OK.

  2. Insert the Password Reset disk or USB drive. The Password Reset Wizard will then start.

  3. When prompted, select the USB disk with the Password Reset Wizard installed on it from the drop-down menu.

  4. Follow the on-screen instructions to make a new password and password hint.

How Do You Unlock an HP Laptop if You Forgot the Password Without a Disk?

You don’t need a disk to recover your HP laptop password if you have a Microsoft Account or a Local Windows Account with security questions in place. Just use the on-screen password-recovery option to recover or reset your password.

If you’re running a local account and don’t have password recovery options or a password-reset disk or USB, the next best method is to use an alternative administrator account. If another user can log in with administrative access, have another user change your password information.

If that doesn’t prove an option, there are commercial password-reset USB drives worth considering. These tools will help you gain access to administrative tools that will let you reset your HP laptop password without affecting the local installation or personal files.

If none of the above options work for you, or you just want to use the laptop again and don’t care about the Windows account, you can always just reset the laptop and start fresh.

How Do I Bypass the Lock Screen on My HP Laptop?

The only way to bypass a login screen permanently is to make changes to your Windows settings from inside your account. Before you do that, you’ll need to access the account itself. Use the above methods to access it, then follow these steps:

  1. Search for netplwiz in Windows search and select the corresponding result.

    Searching for the Windows user settings menu with Netplwz highlighted in search box
  2. Select your Windows account and untick the box that reads Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer. Select Apply, then OK.

    Windows 10 user settings menu with checkbox, OK, and Apply highlighted

    You’ll then be able to bypass the login screen in the future.

  • How do I reset the administrator password on my HP laptop?

    If you forgot your administrator password, try logging into the computer with any valid account, then go to the command prompt and type net user. You'll see a list of accounts. Next, type net user administrator. Then, type net user [any account on the previous list]. When prompted, enter a password, then enter it again when asked to confirm. Try logging on with your newly reset administrator password.

  • How do I reset my password on an HP laptop running Windows 7?

    Navigate to the Control Panel and select User Accounts, then User Accounts > Manage User Accounts. You may be prompted for an administrator password or confirmation. Go to Users > Users for this computer and select the account name. Select Reset Password, then enter again to confirm. Another option: Select Control + Alt + Delete, enter your old password, then enter a new password when prompted.

  • How do I reset my password on an HP laptop running Windows 8?

    You'll need to have an administrator reset your password if your PC is on a domain. If you have a Microsoft account, reset your password online. If your account is local, you'll need to access your password hint. If you're still having trouble signing in, you may need to reinstall Windows.

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