How To Reset Your WordPress Password

Learn how to retrieve a lost, misplaced or forgotten password or username in order to regain access to your website or blog.

Learn WordPressAre you unable to get back into your WordPress site because you’ve misplaced your password?

Not being able to access your admin area because you can’t remember your password or username can be really frustrating.

Fortunately, if you are a WordPress user, there is always a way to get back into the backend of your site.

In this troubleshooting step-by-step tutorial, you will learn the process of retrieving a lost password or username and getting back into your website or blog. We’ll go as far as we can without getting into complicated technical areas, and then, if this still doesn’t help you get back in, we’ll explain to you what your other options for recovering your login details are.

Let’s start at the beginning.

Typing In An Incorrect Username Or Password

Normally, if your username or password are entered incorrectly when you try to access your WP dashboard, you will see an error message like the one below …

What To Do If You Have Lost Or Misplaced Passwords

Your first clue, is that if you get the username right but the password is wrong, WordPress will let you know this …

How To Retrieve Your Password In WordPress

Useful Tip

For security reasons, using the username “admin”.

This is the default installation username for WordPress and one of the leading causes of brute force attacks on WordPress sites.

What To Do If You Have Lost Or Misplaced Passwords In WordPress

If you want to learn how to change your username, see this tutorial:

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If you have forgotten your password, but you know your username or the email address you have registered with, then click on the “Lost your password?” link in the error message …

WordPress Password Retrieval

You can also access the forgotten password function by clicking on the link found below the login box …

How To Retrieve Passwords

Alternatively, just type the following URL into your web browser (where “domain” is your domain and “tld” is the domain extension, eg. “com”, “net”, “info”, etc.) …

WordPress Password Retrieval

Enter your username or registered email address and click ”Get New Password” …

What To Do If You Forget Your Password In WordPress

Important

At this stage, there is no password “recovery” option, only password “reset”.

You will receive an email with a link to reset your password.

What To Do If You Have Forgotten Login Passwords In WordPress

Enter your new password into the “Password reset” field. Make sure to choose a strong password containing upper and lower case letters, numbers and symbols, like “$, ^, %, #, @” etc …

Recovering Your Password In WordPress

Tip

Use a password generator tool to help you create a secure password.

You can use a free online password generator tool like PasswordsGenerator.net (shown below) …

Free Online Password Generator

Or use a password management program like RoboForm, which is not only great for creating secure passwords, but also for storing and managing all of your online passwords …

RoboForm

Use A Password Generator Tool If You Need Help Creating Strong Passwords

To learn more about password management software, see the tutorial below:

Once your password has been reset, log in as normal …

WordPress Password Retrieval

How To Change Your Password Inside The Admin Area

To change your password inside WordPress, log into your backend admin section and select Edit My Profile from the “Howdy, User” dropdown menu at the top-right hand corner of your Dashboard …

What To Do If You Have Forgotten Or Lost A Password In WordPress

You can also access your “Profile” screen by selecting Users > Your Profile from your main admin menu.

Towards the bottom part of the screen, you will see the “change password” fields. Enter a new password and confirm this password here.

Note: Use the WordPress password strength meter to help you avoid using weak passwords and set up a strong password.

WordPress Password Retrieval

Click Update Profile when finished to update your password settings.

What To Do If You Lose WordPress Passwords

If You’ve Forgotten Your Username And Password

So far, the above steps work if you’ve forgotten your password but you have access to your username or email address.

How can you log in if you don’t know both your username and password?

You can still log into your WordPress site, but a little technical knowledge is required.

Important

As this tutorial is really designed for non-technical WordPress users, we recommend that if the information above hasn’t helped you get back into your WordPress admin area, then either contact someone who can provide you with technical assistance (i.e. your webmaster, website support person or your webhost) and ask them to help you reset your WordPress Password from phpMyAdmin, or you can try the method below, which will simply reveal your username and email address, so you at least you can get your password reset and log back in.

All you need is admin access to your server’s control panel. Don’t worry, you won’t be changing anything … you’ll just be taking a look!

Important

If you are worried about working inside your server or WordPress database, then please ask a web services professional for assistance.

For the example below, the server is using cPanel …

Changing WordPress Passwords

cPanel management software

Important

Note: For a complete set of step-by-step tutorials on how to use cPanel, go here: How To Use cPanel.

Log into your server administration account …

What To Do If You Lose WordPress Passwords

cPanel admin area

Scroll down to the “Databases” section and click on phpMyAdmin

Changing Your WordPress Password

phpMyAdmin

Click on your WP database.

Note: If you have multiple databases set up on your domain, make sure you select the right one …

WordPress Password Retrieval

phpMyAdmin databases

Don’t worry about the complicated-looking screen.

Click on wp_users in the “Table” column on the left-hand side …

Changing Your Password

phpMyAdmin databases

You will see a list of all your site’s users with their usernames and emails. Typically, the first line is assigned to the administrator, but if you have more users and need to locate their username or email, then scroll down the list until you find what you are looking for …

WordPress Password Retrieval

Important

Note: The user password is also included in this section of your database (in the “user_pass” column”), but as you can see from the screenshot above, it is encrypted.

Due to security purposes, WordPress stores all passwords as a cryptographic hash function (MD5 Hash) instead of plain text. This prevents even the site administrator from knowing a user’s password.

To change this password you will need an encryption tool that lets you generate an MD5 hash, which you would then copy and paste into the password field. You can search for “free MD5 generators online” if you want to change the password yourself, but as suggested earlier, ask for professional assistance if you don’t know what you are doing, as you could end up causing errors.

Once you have retrieved your username and email address, log out of your server, return to your login screen and request a new password …

Changing The Login Password

Hopefully, this tutorial has helped you get back into your site and you can now resume working on your website.

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"These tutorials have so much information and are easy to understand. If you use WordPress or plan to in the future these will help you with everything you need to know." - Valisa (Mesa, Arizona)

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Author: Martin Aranovitch

Martin Aranovitch is the owner of WPCompendium.org and the author of The WordPress User Manual. WPCompendium.org provides hundreds of FREE tutorials that show you how to use WordPress to grow your business online with no coding skills required! Get our FREE "101+ WordPress Tips, Tricks & Hacks For Non-Techies" e-course with loads of useful WordPress tips!

Originally published as How To Reset Your WordPress Password.