Inherited laptop.

19 Aug 2010
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United Kingdom
Hi all,
I've recently inherited a small laptop (an Acer Spin 1 SP111-31 series) which I'd like to use but It is password protected and no-one knows the password.
My late uncle was given it as a Christmas present a few years ago but never really used it, except for setting the password obviously, and it would be a shame to dump it.

I don't mind reloading a fresh version of Windows. I have done that recently for my own laptop which suffered from a HDD failure (with the help of some of you).

Can anyone give me a steer on how to go about this?

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Boot from a bootable cd or usb, adjust boot order in BIOS. Youd need to create the boot image on another device of course. I tend to throw Linux Mint on older devices.
Hi Chalky, Thanks for your interest. I'm no computer wizz and have no experience of LINUX. A few months ago I loaded a fresh version of Windows 10 on my laptop from installation files I had loaded on a memory stick. I got the files from this website:

Here's a link to the thread I started on here to do this:

I still have the data loaded onto a stick. Will it be possible for me to use this to create a new installation of Windows 10 on this inherited laptop?
Will it simply delete and/or overwrite everything that is currently on the device?

Seems too simple to me.

Cheers, Chris.


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Yeah, that works if you have a Win10 code.
The media creation tool creates the bootable USB, then hit F2 or F8 as laptop boots and in the BIOS make sure boot order has USB first. If no USB option, create the media on a CD
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I haven't got a Win 10 code but I didn't seem to need one last time when I reloaded my laptop. Someone told me I didn't need it as, if Win 10 had been loaded on the laptop before, the code is held elsewhere in the laptop's memory. Is there any way to check if Win10 is loaded currently?
Thanks for your advice Chalky.
Thanks for all the input.

Chalky, I don't think I can boot from anything other than Windows.

This is what I get when I hit F2 and go into the boot manager. Do I need to do some enabling somewhere?
HB, Thanks for your input. I couldn't manage to get into DOS following your video so I tried another random offering on the internet:

With this I got into DOS and, as the guy instructed, entered this command 'control userpasswords2', which led me to this screen:


Now there was the original username in the users box but there was a message in the reset password box saying that this password could not be reset.

Stupidly, I decided to delete it, thinking that would allow me to add another user.

I then went back to your video but, of course, the username has been deleted.

Is there any way back from this? I tried system restore, but there are no restoration points set.


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Thanks for your help Jonbey. This certainly seems a simpler way to get into DOS and restoring the laptop to factory settings would be ideal, however, whether I select 'keep my files' or 'remove everything', I get this message


Is there a trick I can use to clear some space? Perhaps use a DOS command to delete something?

Cheers, Chris.
do you want t access your Uncles data? I think from your comments and screen grabs it's running Win10. If so then you really need to break through the password barrier but even then you may not be able to as the data may be encrypted.

When you Hit F2 what are the options offered?

seem to remember on Win10 that it isn't (True) DOS but a DOS emulator which has restricted capabilities.

So if you can get to change the Boot order to USB first then we have a starting point. this is a chance for you to again some computer knowledge.
On another PC with a clean USB stick search for Linux 'Live' and build yourself a Live Linux USB drive.
Plug that in to your Uncles Computer and power it up. When your asked load or live (or similar) select live and let the PC complete loading. Now you will have a screen that looks similar to a MS Windows desktop and you will be able to find the data that your uncle created. You should be able to open, close, Copy, delete etc through the data and load to an external drive.
I've had to this a few times over the years to rescue windoze PC's.

I use Ubuntu live. Link

If you can't get the machine to change boot sequence then you may be able to get the PC to eventually ask to initiate the recovery process (think all PC will have a recovery partition which is normally hidden.

The following links may help
Acer Spin

MS Win10 Recovery.

License key number may be on a sticker on underside of laptop.

Good Luck.
Thanks for your input wgt52. No. I don't want to access my uncle's data. A fresh install would be fine..... And I've managed to do it.... :LOL::LOL::LOL::LOL::LOL::LOL:

The problem was to get the laptop to boot from USB. There was some kinda "secure boot" thing going on which meant I couldn't boot from anything but Windows. To disable secure boot I first needed to set a supervisor password. After that, loading Windows10 from a stick was a breeze.
Here's my source video:

Once again, thanks to all who contributed to this thread. I'vr learned quite a bit over the last couple of nights.
I don't think so. This is all I have in the BIOS screen. I simply moved Windows Boot Manager to No.6 priority and it booted from the stick.

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