Changing Windows Passwords

ALERT! These instructions were written for XP & 2000 Pro. They have not been updated for Vista or Server 2003 or other systems.

Your Windows password is used to log on to Windows computers.

1. From a Linux or Solaris Computer

You can use the remote desktop (rdesktop) command, or terminal server client (tsclient) to connect to a terminal server. Both of these are in the GNOME and KDE menus, usually with the Internet apps. (Contact your local site to find out the server names; Windows Terminal Servers are not accessible outside NRAO). Once this session has started, you can press control-alt-delete (TBD: Mac keyboards don't have alt?) and click on Change Password.

Then proceed to step 3 below.

2. From a Windows machine

To change a password in Windows XP Professional or Windows 2000 Professional, first log on, then hold down together Ctrl-Alt-Delete and click on Change Password.

3. Changing the Password

When the Change Password window appears, fill in all the text boxes and click OK.

Most AD domains require complex passwords. Here are the requirements:

  1. The password must not contain significant portions of the user's account name or full name.
  2. The password must be at least six characters in length. We recommend a pass phrase longer than 15 characters.
  3. The password must contain characters from three of these four categories:
      1. English uppercase characters (A-Z)
      2. English lowercase characters (a-z)
      3. Base 10 digits (0-9)
      4. Special characters (for example: !,$,#, or %)

Windows XP Professional and Windows 2000 Professional passwords are case sensitive; for example, A and a are not the same. All special characters can be used in your password except control characters; asterisks and underscores are not recommended. Your new password must be different than your last three passwords. After your initial log on to XP Professional or Windows 2000 Professional, your user ID and password are stored in memory. Windows then attempts to use this ID and password to log on to Microsoft Windows domains and/or other servers.

-- PatrickMurphy - 30 Jul 2008
Topic revision: r2 - 2009-10-19, CarolynWhite
This site is powered by FoswikiCopyright © by the contributing authors. All material on this collaboration platform is the property of the contributing authors.
Ideas, requests, problems regarding NRAO Public Wiki? Send feedback