Wednesday, May 13, 2015

How to Install Windows 8 without CD Key

Starting from Windows 8, a CD key (product key) is needed before proceeding with the installation, and you're unable to skip entering CD key. However thanks to a simple trick, you can easily skip the CD key during the Windows 8 installation process.  

How to Install Windows 8 without CD Key?

  1. Follow this guide to download a official copy of Windows 8 directly from Microsoft's servers.
  2. After you've downloaded the Windows 8 ISO image, burn it to a USB flash drive with the freeware ISO2Disc.
  3. Open your USB installation drive and navigate to the /sources folder. Look for the ei.cfg file and open it in a text editor such as Notepad. If the file doesn't already exist, create a new text document and rename it as ei.cfg.
  4. Copy and paste the following text into the ei.cfg file and then save it. Make sure that anything that already exists in the file should be cleared first.

  5. Now go ahead and boot from your USB installation media. This time you will see a Skip button when you are prompted to enter a product key during Windows Setup. 
This method will basically allow you to install Windows 8 as a trial for about 30 days without entering a Windows 8 CD key during the installation. If you have a valid product key later on, you can change Windows 8 product key after install.

Saturday, May 9, 2015

How to Disable Password Complexity Requirements in Windows Server Core

How can I disable the password complexity requirements in Windows Server Core? Because there is no GUI for accessing the Group Policy Editor, you have to do most of the work of configuring a Server Core installation by typing commands in the Command Prompt. In this tutorial we'll show you how to disable password complexity requirements in Windows Server Core.

If your server is a domain controller, follow the steps below and you can change the default domain password policy. To change the local password policy on a domain controller, you must boot your server in Directory Services Restore Mode (DSRM) and then perform the steps below:
  1. Open an elevated Command Prompt. If you've forgotten the local or domain administrator password and couldn't log on, try the PCUnlocker bootdisk for bypassing the password.
  2. Type the following command and hit Enter:
    secedit.exe /export /cfg C:\secconfig.cfg
    This will dump the local policy or domain policy for the system, including account policies, audit policies, and so on.
  3. Open the C:\secconfig.cfg file with your text editor. For Windows Server Core, you can type notepad.exe in the Command Prompt. When Notepad launches, click the File -> Open menu to open C:\secconfig.cfg.
  4. Now you can view and edit all of the relevant policies as shown below. Here we'll disable the password complexity policy, so replace PasswordComplexity = 1 to PasswordComplexity = 0, and change the value of MinimumPasswordLength to 0.
  5. When done, save your changes. To load the edited file as your new policy configuration, use the following command:
    secedit.exe /configure /db %windir%\securitynew.sdb /cfg C:\secconfig.cfg /areas SECURITYPOLICY
  6. The new password policy will apply to all password changes and new password. After disabling the password complexity policy, you should be able to change Windows account password to whatever you like.