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This article needs additional citations for verification. Security Accounts Manager, is a database file in Windows XP, Windows Vista, Windows 7, 8. 1 and 10 that stores users’ passwords. The user passwords are stored in a hashed format in a registry hive either as a LM hash or as a NTLM hash. In an attempt to improve the security of the SAM database against offline software cracking, Microsoft introduced the SYSKEY function in Windows NT 4.