Forgot SQL Server “SA” password? Don’t Worry

Hi Rama,

Need your help. I forgot the “SA” password and I am unable to access to SQL Server via windows/sql authentication.  Is there any way we can recover the “SA” account?

Hello Vamshi,

Yes, we can as long as you are able to RDP and you are a built in administrator to your windows box.

Thanks Rama, I am an admin to the windows box, I am able to RDP to the server. Could you guide me how to recover the “SA” account?

Yes Vamshi. Sure. Here is the way you can do that. Please follow the below steps to reset the “SA” account.

  • Log on to window box and make sure the built in administrator enabled


  • Go to SQL Server Configuration Manager and add the -m parameter to run the SQL Server in single user mode as show in below screenshot



  • Re-start the SQL Server


  • Now logon to SQL Server with builtin administrator as below


  •  Here you go, you are able to connect to SQL Server. Now change the “SA” account password


  • After that remove the -m parameter from SQL Server configuration manager and restart the sql server


  • Connect SQL Server  with  new “SA” password. There you go!



Hope you enjoyed the post!


Ramasankar Molleti

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About Ramasankar

My name is Ramasankar Molleti, I have been working on various database and cloud systems (SQL Server, Oracle, PostgreSQL, DynamoDB, Redshift, Amazon, Azure) over 12 years, primarily focusing on Architect , Development, Administration and Business intelligence. I hold various Certifications such as Amazon Web services Solution Architect Associate, Microsoft certifications (Microsoft Certified Information Technology Professional, Microsoft Certified Technology Specialist, and Microsoft Certified Solution Associate).
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