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  • Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

    Hi,

    I have recently changed the domain to our house's workgroup on a Windows XP work laptop that I use (I no longer work at the company). After rebooting, it simply will not let me login. My prime concern is not losing any of my user data that I have stored on the computer, then my next concern is being able to login and use the computer.

    My problem is very similar to these (except I cannot get help from the company's IT department because I do not think the company would be willing to help me):
    -http://forums.devshed.com/networking-help-109/changed-domain-to-workgroup--can-t-get-in-144471.html
    -http://forums.petri.com/showthread.php?t=3280
    -http://forums.petri.com/showthread.php?p=63060

    Can anyone help?

  • #2
    Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

    Originally posted by aaron View Post
    I have recently changed the domain to our house's workgroup on a Windows XP work laptop that I use (I no longer work at the company). After rebooting, it simply will not let me login.
    This needs clarification. Will it not let you log in with the same account that you formerly used while joined to the domain? If that is the case, then the threads that you reference towards the bottom of your post explain why and also explain that, unless you rejoin to the domain, it is impossible to log in with that same account. I don't believe that cached credentials will help you out in this scenario (can anyone confirm this for me?).

    Or are you trying to log in with a local account such as the local administrator? Are you even getting to the logon prompt?


    Originally posted by aaron View Post
    My prime concern is not losing any of my user data that I have stored on the computer
    Unless I'm misunderstanding your situation, the data is still there in the user profile folder for that user. To reclaim those files you will need to either log in as a local user (E.g. local administrator), boot from some kind of live CD or slave the hard drive to another computer and copy the files manually. If you create a new local user or use an already existing local user account, simply drag and drop the files from one user's folder to the other.

    Originally posted by aaron View Post
    then my next concern is being able to login and use the computer.
    At this point you can only log in with an account that was created on the local computer, not on the domain. Ask your former IT department for the local administrator password or bring the laptop back to them so they can privately enter the local admin password and change it to something of your choosing. If that can't happen then you must go through the steps presented on the Petri site to crack the password.

    Originally posted by aaron View Post
    (except I cannot get help from the company's IT department because I do not think the company would be willing to help me)
    Why do you not think they would help? Bad blood betwixt you and them or do you perceive them to simply be "jerks"?


    Let us know what happens.
    Wesley David
    LinkedIn | Careers 2.0
    -------------------------------
    Microsoft Certifications: MCSE 2003 | MCSA:Messaging 2003 | MCITP:EA, SA, EST | MCTS: a'plenty | MCDST
    Vendor Neutral Certifications: CWNA
    Blog: www.TheNubbyAdmin.com || Twitter: @Nonapeptide || GTalk, Reader and Google+: [email protected] || Skype: Wesley.Nonapeptide
    Goofy kitten avatar photo from Troy Snow: flickr.com/photos/troysnow/

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    • #3
      Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

      Correct, when I try to login it will not let me. So assuming it is a network account (is that what you call it) if I reset the local account admin's password, create a new account, and I should be able to access my old (domain) account's files to transfer over? That should work even if I'm disconnected from the domain?

      Thanks for the quick reply as well.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

        Originally posted by aaron View Post
        So assuming it is a network account (is that what you call it)
        For the record, it would be more accurate to call it a "Domain Account".



        Originally posted by aaron View Post
        if I reset the local account admin's password, create a new account, and I should be able to access my old (domain) account's files to transfer over? That should work even if I'm disconnected from the domain?
        Here's your ultimate goal if you want to use the computer: Get access to an account on the computer that has local administrator privileges. I'd first try to access the local admin account by asking your IT department for help. Failing that, you'll need to crack the password through guessing (unlikely) or "hack tools". Before you put your grey hat on, I'd recommend booting from a Linux Live CD or taking the hard drive out and connecting it to another computer via a IDE/SATA to USB connector. From there you can copy all the files that you need without worrying about permissions. Once that's done you can decide if you want to try to hack the local admin password. Or you could reinstall the OS (assuming that you have installation media). If you do gain access to a local administrator account, you have full access to anything on the computer under anyone's account (unless file encryption has been used, but I digress...) even if you are off of the domain.

        I'd recommend against trying to crack the admin password until after you have safely removed the data that interests you. No, it probably won't destroy data to try and hack your password. Yes, I'm paranoid and you should be too.

        BTW, Linux Live CDs are a breeze to make and use so if you're not too technically inclined you can still manage. As long as you've got software that can burn an ISO to a CD you can do it. Try Knoppix, it's pretty good.

        Keep us up to date with what happens!
        Wesley David
        LinkedIn | Careers 2.0
        -------------------------------
        Microsoft Certifications: MCSE 2003 | MCSA:Messaging 2003 | MCITP:EA, SA, EST | MCTS: a'plenty | MCDST
        Vendor Neutral Certifications: CWNA
        Blog: www.TheNubbyAdmin.com || Twitter: @Nonapeptide || GTalk, Reader and Google+: [email protected] || Skype: Wesley.Nonapeptide
        Goofy kitten avatar photo from Troy Snow: flickr.com/photos/troysnow/

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        • #5
          Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

          Hello again!

          I actually did try booting into puppy Linux via a cd I created the other day before posting this thread with no success. I booted into the cd fine (it automatically booted into it after a restart) but when I went into mounts all it found was the floppy drive and cd drive, it didn't list the hd.

          So I guess the best option would be to ask the it department for the local admin's password? Would they have it on file or would I have to go in for it? And once I got the password I can simply back up the files from the domain account (they would still be there, right?) and create a new user for my use then load my files onto it?

          Thanks

          Comment


          • #6
            Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

            Originally posted by aaron View Post
            I actually did try booting into puppy Linux via a cd I created the other day before posting this thread with no success. I booted into the cd fine (it automatically booted into it after a restart) but when I went into mounts all it found was the floppy drive and cd drive, it didn't list the hd.
            I think I've had a similar issue with that in the past with certain distros. It may not be set to automatically mount a hard disk. Unless a true Linux geek can assist, my best advice (if you want to continue to pursue this method) would be to try a different distribution. Knoppix is always a good choice.


            Originally posted by aaron View Post
            So I guess the best option would be to ask the it department for the local admin's password?
            You could also try removing the hard disk and using the IDE/SATA to USB connector I mentioned previously and then crack the password. (EDIT: That is to say, remove the hard disk, copy the data, place the hard disk back in the work computer, and then try to crack the password) That would be a sure-fire way to get the data. You may also be forced to use this method if the IT department isn't cooperative.

            NOTE: As you know, If you are successful with removing files from the computer that still leaves you with a computer that you cannot log into. You'd either have to crack the password or reinstall the OS and applications.


            Originally posted by aaron View Post
            Would they have it on file or would I have to go in for it?
            They would probably know the password. In all likelihood there are only a few local administrator passwords distributed throughout the organization. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if each computer had the exact same one. Whether or not you have to go in for it depends on how comfortable the IT department is with giving you that information. I know that in my working environments I would require that the user come into the office so that I could type the admin password in and then reset it to something of the user's choosing.


            Originally posted by aaron View Post
            And once I got the password I can simply back up the files from the domain account (they would still be there, right?) and create a new user for my use then load my files onto it?
            Yes, the files will still be there. They will be in C:\Documents and Settings\%username% You may not be able to have each application's settings retained to a newly created user, but at least the data will be there.


            Keep us posted!
            Last edited by Nonapeptide; 25th July 2008, 23:24.
            Wesley David
            LinkedIn | Careers 2.0
            -------------------------------
            Microsoft Certifications: MCSE 2003 | MCSA:Messaging 2003 | MCITP:EA, SA, EST | MCTS: a'plenty | MCDST
            Vendor Neutral Certifications: CWNA
            Blog: www.TheNubbyAdmin.com || Twitter: @Nonapeptide || GTalk, Reader and Google+: [email protected] || Skype: Wesley.Nonapeptide
            Goofy kitten avatar photo from Troy Snow: flickr.com/photos/troysnow/

            Comment


            • #7
              Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

              That's great news! My main concern why they might be a little un-cooperative is because they didn't exactly hand me the laptop saying "here you go!" when I left the company. And that is very reassuring about the files because after failing to be able to login, I was a little paranoid that disconnecting from the domain deleted the domain account, so I am glad to hear that that's not the case.

              Thanks, I'll keep you updated!
              Last edited by aaron; 26th July 2008, 00:38. Reason: fixing sentence

              Comment


              • #8
                Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

                Originally posted by aaron View Post
                That's great news! My main concern why they might be a little un-cooperative is because they didn't exactly hand me the laptop saying "here you go!" when I left the company.
                So in otherwords, the company owns the laptop that you have in your possession?
                ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

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                • #9
                  Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

                  Well, they never requested the laptop back so I have been using it since. I guess maybe "technically" it would be considered theirs, but I do not consider my use of the computer breaking any laws and considering they didn't mind I don't see why anyone here should.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

                    Then you won't have any problem contacting them and stating the case honestly and truthfully; and if they have a problem, giving it back. They may also have a MAJOR problem with you retaining access to data you possessed in your employment with them; let's say you were the sales director of a blue-chip and you had on your laptop a list of their major customer accounts with contacts? I think they would (quite rightly) object very strongly to you possessing access to their data - and in some countries it would be unlawful (if not illegal) for you to use any information you have on there. p.s. in MY country at least; any data stored on a company machine is by Law the property of the company; regardless whether it's photos of your son in the bath or server performance data.

                    My advice? Forget the data, format the laptop and start again from scratch. That's the only sensible way to proceed.


                    Tom
                    For my own and your protection, I do not provide support by private message under any circumstances. All such messages will be deleted and ignored.

                    Anything you say will be misquoted and used against you

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                    • #11
                      Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

                      Originally posted by aaron View Post
                      Well, they never requested the laptop back so I have been using it since. I guess maybe "technically" it would be considered theirs, but I do not consider my use of the computer breaking any laws
                      Since this is your view, contacting your old employer would be the easiest route. As nonapeptide said, they probably won't give you the password over the phone or anything. They'll need access to the laptop to unlock it and remove it from their asset system correctly as per their IT policies.
                      ** Remember to give credit where credit is due and leave reputation points where appropriate **

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

                        Ok thanks wired, I shall do that.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Re: Changed domain to workgroup on work laptop

                          This thread is being closed due to a number of sequences that I find disturbing. The OP openly admits to having in their posession a laptop that a former employer allowed him to use while in their employ and that he didn't return when that employment was terminated.

                          The OP then asked for assistance in changing the password on his former employer's laptop so they would have full use of it.

                          The OP tried to take their quest for password clearance on the laptop offline by send PMs to a member who was answering the posts in this thread. This was the final straw as it seemed to me to be sort of sneaky.

                          As a result this thread is being closed and the OP will receive a 4 week ban.

                          ALL requests for help MUST be made through the Forums and NOT be taken offline via PM, email, Messenger or any other communication form.

                          Thank you.
                          1 1 was a racehorse.
                          2 2 was 1 2.
                          1 1 1 1 race 1 day,
                          2 2 1 1 2

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