Recover Lost Passwords in Ubuntu 12.04 (Recovery Mode)

This brief tutorial is going to show you how to easily reset your forgotten password in Ubuntu 12.04 Precise Pangolin.

Let’s face it, some of us do forget our passwords. Unlike Windows, resetting your forgotten password in Ubuntu 12.04 isn’t too difficult. All you have to do is login to the recovery mode at your boot prompt and reset it.

This short tutorial is going to show you how.


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  • Reset Your Forgotten Password in Ubuntu 12.04
  • Enjoy!

To get started, power on your Ubuntu computer while holding down the Shift Key on your keyboard. At the boot menu (GRUB) select (Recovery Mode)




Then scroll down to root and press Enter.




Next, run the commands below to remount root

mount -rw -o remount /




Finally, run the commands below to create / change your password.

passwd username




Exit and login with your new password.



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24 thoughts on “Recover Lost Passwords in Ubuntu 12.04 (Recovery Mode)”

  1. la procedura è abbastanza semplice, ma ho un piccolo problema premendo shift ubuntu 12.04 non mi apre il grub come mai help me please!

  2. I tried the above process in ubuntu12.04 to reset password for user/admin account after holding the “shift” key i am unable to see the boot menu (GRUB).. and it showing the input not supported message and going to ubuntu… user’s login…. but it’s working on ubuntu 13.04 os… what is the problem..? can u just help me out… pls…..

  3. Thank-you, very much. Prevented embarrassing loss of documents.
    For those worried about security; this action requires physical access to your machine. Simply don’t let that happen.

  4. Hey, it says password changed, but when i try to login it just blinking and cannot login,
    It doesn’t say wrong password. Please help me,

  5. when i am coming to root drop to root its asking for root password for maintenance how do i resolve it pls confirm me back

  6. hi folks, password authentication fails even after successful password reset. Have changed password in root I am informed password reset successful but when I boot back to Ubuntu and try to update .. I get Password authentication failed

  7. After entering the command “passwd username”, it says ‘Enter new UNIX password’. But I can’t seem to type anything in that. Please help.

  8. Thanks for the easy directions. I was building a laptop for a friend and set it aside for two weeks and could not recall the password I set up originally. :)

  9. It did work fine on my Ubuntu netbook. Now let’s hope it also works on an elder person’s laptop who has forgotten his Elementary OS password.

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