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Note: Starting with FortiOS 7.2.4 the maintainer account was removed, meaning this method to reset a password will no longer work. Users must instead have physical access to the FortiGate and perform a TFTP restore of the firmware in order to regain access to the FortiGate.
Once logged into the FortiGate with the maintainer account (as described below), if the FortiGate is running FortiOS 6.0.3 or later, enter the execute factoryreset command to return the FortiGate to its default configuration.
This can be useful if the admin administrator account was deleted.
In newer versions of the BIOS, expect some changes to the behavior of the maintainer account. These changes will include:
- The countdown timer for how log enter the credentials has increased. Starting from when the device powers up, there will be 60 seconds instead of 30.
- Using the maintainer account and resetting a password cause a log to be created; making these actions traceable for security purposes.
- The account will be able to reset the password for any super-admin profile user in addition to the default admin user. This takes into account the possibility that the default account has been renamed.
- The only thing the maintainer account has permission to do is reset the passwords of super-admin profile accounts.
- A console cable.
- Terminal software such as Putty.exe (Windows) or Terminal (MacOS).
- The serial number of the FortiGate device.
Connect the computer to the firewall via the Console port on the back of the unit.
In most units, this is done either by a Serial cable or an RJ-45 to Serial cable. There are some units that use a USB cable and FortiExplorer to connect to the console port.
Resetting a lost admin password for the VM-s using the maintainer account is not possible.
In this case, reverting to a snapshot or re-provisioning the VM and restoring the configuration (without a password for the admin account) is the only solution.
Start the terminal software.
Connect to the firewall using the following:
This article is applicable for 7.0 fortiOS also.
Note:- Starting with FortiOS 7.2.4 the maintainer account was removed.
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