-: Windows-XP Password Cracking :-
Here we use the tool "Cain and Abel" for cracking passwords of any local user/administrator.
First download cain and abel from "http://www.oxid.it/cain.html" and install it on your system.
Make sure that you have disabled the antivirus/firewall running on your system before installing and throughout this process.
Two most effective techniques used here are "Brute-Force" and "Cryptanalysis".
Brute-Force:- As this techniques takes more time to complete, the attacker prefer this technique only when there is a hope that the password contain same type of characters or may be two. i.e only loweralpha, only alpha, only numeric or may be loweralpha-numeric, also it should contain less than 7 characters. Otherwise it takes more time to crack password, which may be the mixture of all types of characters along with special symbols.
The step-by-step explaination for this technique is given below-
1) Open the tool "Cain and Abel"
2) Go into the category "Cracker" it displays all sub-categories under "Cracker" in left panel.
3) Select "LM & NTLM Hashes" from left panel and then click on symbol, you will be greeted by a window as shown.
4) Check "import hashes from local system" and then click "Next". This shows all the active accounts on local system like administrator, guest, etc. along with LM and NT hashed values of their respective passwords, as shown below.
5) Right clicking on any username shows all available options using which we can crack it's password.
6) Here we select "Brute-Force Attack" and then "NTLM Hashes", since windows uses NTLM hashes to store local users' passwords.
7) You will be greeted by a window where you can modify properties for brute-force attack such as password length, character set, etc.
8) Click on "Start" button.
9) On completion it will reveal the exact password.