What is the SAM registry file?

Asked By: Solomia Andueza | Last Updated: 21st June, 2020
Category: technology and computing shareware and freeware
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The Security Accounts Manager (SAM) is a registry file in Windows NT and later versions until the most recent Windows 8. It stores users' passwords in a hashed format (in LM hash and NTLM hash). Since a hash function is one-way, this provides some measure of security for the storage of the passwords.

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Also, what is the SAM file?

The Security Account Manager (SAM) is a database file in Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, 8.1 and 10 that stores users' passwords. It can be used to authenticate local and remote users. SAM uses cryptographic measures to prevent unauthenticated users accessing the system.

Also Know, what information is contained in Sam and system files? SECURITY ACCOUNT MANAGER (SAM) Security Account Manager (SAM) is a database used to store user account information, including password, account groups, access rights, and special privileges in Windows operating system.

Moreover, where is the SAM file in Windows 10?

These hashes are stored in the Windows SAM file. This file is located on your system at C:WindowsSystem32config but is not accessible while the operating system is booted up.

What is the registry used for?

Windows Registry. The Windows Registry is a hierarchical database that stores low-level settings for the Microsoft Windows operating system and for applications that opt to use the registry. The kernel, device drivers, services, Security Accounts Manager, and user interface can all use the registry.

38 Related Question Answers Found

What is BAM format?

The BAM Format is a binary format for storing sequence data. The current definition of the format is at [BAM/SAM Specification]. The corresponding SAM Format can be used to store sequence data, both aligned as well as unaligned, in a human readable format. Our libStatGen library reads both SAM and BAM format files.

How do I find hidden passwords on my computer?

In the left-hand column choose Settings and then click the "Show advanced settings" link at the bottom of the screen. Scroll down to "Passwords and forms" and click the "Manage saved passwords" link. Choose an account and next to the obscured password click the "Show" button. Voila.

How big is a SAM file?

At 2 bits per nucleotide, the SAM file should be about 25 Gb for 100 billion bps, but these files are often 500+ Gb.

Where do I find my saved passwords?

Select “Settings” near the bottom of the pop-up menu. Locate and tap on “Passwords” partway down the list. Within the password menu, you can scroll through all of your saved passwords.

What is a rainbow attack?


Rainbow attack is an implementation of the Faster Cryptanalytic Time-Memory Trade-Off method developed by Dr Philippe Oechslin. The idea is to generate the password hash tables in advance (only once), and during the audit/recovery process, simply look up the hash in these pre-computed tables.

Where is the SAM registry file found?

The SAM registry file is located on your system at C:WINDOWSsystem32config, but it is locked and cannot be moved or copied while Windows is running. The main function of the Security Accounts Manager is holding onto the passwords used to log into Windows accounts.

Where does Windows 7 store passwords?

2 Answers. Windows account details are stored in the SAM registry hive. It stores passwords using a one-way-hash (either LM Hash, which is old and weak, or NTLM hash which is newer and stronger.) The SAM hive file is located at %WinDir%system32configsam .

Where is Sam database located?

The SAM database is part of the registry. It's stored in the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESECURITYSAM subkey and duplicated to the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESAM subkey. At the file-system level, the SAM registry files are stored together with the rest of the registry files under \%systemroot%system32config (SECURITY and SAM files).

What can John the Ripper crack?

John the Ripper is a free password cracking software tool developed by Openwall. It can be run against various encrypted password formats including several crypt password hash types commonly found in Linux or Windows. It can also be to crack passwords of Compressed files like ZIP and also Documents files like PDF.

What happens if I delete SAM file?


The SAM file is responsible for storing the local users' passwords on a workgroup computer. If the SAM is somehow deleted in some way while Windows is running, the system loses all user account passwords, resulting in Windows throwing an error exception (Blue Screen) and shutting down.

How do I copy a file system?

Then click File System Browser on the left, choose the drive you want to copy from and click OK. The file browser will be familiar as it's like Explorer and you simply use it to locate the in use files or folders you want to copy. Right click on the entry, select Save to disk and choose the folder you want to save to.

Where are all the passwords stored in Windows?

All local user account passwords are stored inside windows. They are located inside C:windowssystem32configSAM If the computer is used to log into a domain then that username/password are also stored so it's possible to log into the computer when not connected to the domain.

Where are NTLM hashes stored?

The hashes are located in the WindowsSystem32config directory using both the SAM and SYSTEM files. In addition it's also located in the registry file HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESAM which cannot be accessed during run time. Finally backup copies can be often found in WindowsRepair.

What is a Pwdump file?

pwdump is the name of various Windows programs that output the LM and NTLM password hashes of local user accounts from the Security Account Manager (SAM). In order to work, it must be run under an Administrator account, or be able to access an Administrator account on the computer where the hashes are to be dumped.

How do you bypass a password on a computer?


Press and hold the Command+R keys as the computer boots and it will boot into recovery mode. Once in recovery mode, select Terminal, type resetpassword into the terminal, and press Enter. You'll see the Reset Password utility, which allows you to reset the password of a any user account on the Mac.

How do I recover my username and password?

To find your username and reset your password:
  1. Go to the Forgot Password or Username page.
  2. Enter your account email address, but leave the username box blank!
  3. Click Continue.
  4. Check your email inbox—you'll get an email with a list of any usernames associated with your account email address.

How do I find my Windows user name?

Method 1
  1. While sitting at the host computer with LogMeIn installed, press and hold the Windows key and press the letter R on your keyboard. The Run dialog box is displayed.
  2. In the box, type cmd and press Enter. The command prompt window will appear.
  3. Type whoami and press Enter.
  4. Your current username will be displayed.