How to reset/recovery Cisco Nexus 7K/9K admin password
If you've forgotten the admin password for your Cisco Nexus device, you can reset/recovery it with the following steps:
Press CTRL+C during the boot sequence until you see "loader>" prompt
Enable recovery mode before the boot
loader> cmdline recoverymode=1
If you have a previously image loaded just choose that one. Type dir command to see a list of binary files.
But if there is no boot image you can use a USB port and a USB stick FAT32 formatted and containing a suitable binary firmware (.bin).
boot <image on USB or on bootflash>
example: boot usb2:nxos.9.3.11.bin or boot bootflash:nxos.9.3.11.bin
When the boot is complete, the switch(boot)# prompt will appear, signifying that the recovery mode procedure was successful.
Type "init system" but be aware that this will erase all partition data and return the system to a full initialization.
switch(boot)# init system
Upon completion of the "init system" command, it will be possible to reboot the switch in factory-reset mode.
So with all the prompts from the beginning, the password prompt, the quick configuration mode… and you will be able to enter the new password.
On reboot you may miss the firmware but it is not a problem, because you can start the switch with the binary file in a USB stick, as we did during the recovery procedure.
Then, when the upload is complete, you can reinstall it with the command install all nxos nxos.XXXXXXXX.bin and reboot the switch.