Computer system passwords can be up to 4 types in a computer depending on the model standard of the PC. There are four types of passwords in a computer system.
- Primary or Power On Password (POP)
Power on password is also known as the operating system password. The password protects the computer from being powered on by an unauthorized user. The password resides in the operating system files. If the operating system password if forgotten, it can be removed by formatting the operating system.
- CMOS Password
CMOS – Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor is a small chip on the motherboard that stores information temporarily. When a CMOS password is set, the password must be entered before the system’s operating will boot.
If CMOS password is forgotten, it can be cleared by losing the computer to the motherboard level, remove the CMOS battery from the computer, power on the computer without the CMOS battery for few minutes, off the computer and fix back the CMOS battery. This step will clear all the information that was stored in the CMOS-RAM since it can only store information temporary.
- Hard Disk Drive (HDD) Password
Hard disk drive password is a password set on the hard drive to protect it from unauthorized access even if the hard disk drive is removed to another computer system. HDD password resides in the hard drive even without an operating system in the hard drive.
There’s no alternative way to clear the hard drive password if forgotten.
- BIOS Password
BIOS – Basic Input/Output System password is the riskiest password type to play with. This password is the highest security you can provide to your computer system. BIOS password locks your computer motherboard with the BIOS chip on the motherboard. A BIOS password has to be entered before the operating system loads. The only alternative to clear a BIOS password if forgotten is to replace the password BIOS chip with the same BIOS chip of that type of computer model and the BIOS chip must not be on a password.
Computer system passwords
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