From the boot menu or the boot disk select recovery mode, which is usually the second boot option.
After you select recovery mode and wait for all the boot-up processes to finish, you’ll be presented with a few options. In this case, you want the Drop to root shell prompt option so press the Down arrow to get to that option, and then press Enter to select it.
The root account is the ultimate administrator and can do anything to the Ubuntu installation (including erase it), so please be careful with what commands you enter in the root terminal.
Once you’re at the root shell prompt, if you have forgotten your username as well, type
That’s a lowercase L, by the way, not a capital i, in ls. You should then see a list of the users on your Ubuntu installation. In this case, I’m going to reset Susan Brownmiller’s password. To reset the password, type
where usernameis the username you want to reset. In this case, I want to reset Susan’s password, so I type
You’ll then be prompted for a new password. When you type the password you will get no visual response acknowledging your typing. Your password is still being accepted. Just type the password and hit Enter when you’re done. You’ll be prompted to retype the password. Do so and hit Enter again.
Now the password should be reset. Type
to return to the recovery menu.
After you get back to the recovery menu, select resume normal boot, and use Ubuntu as you normally would—only this time, you actually know the password!