Technology in terms you understand. Sign up for my weekly newsletter, "Confident Computing", for more solutions you can use to make your life easier. Click here.

122 comments on “How Do I Switch Back to a Local Account Sign-in for Windows 10?”

  1. Thanks, as always great info, Leo! For those of us who haven’t made the switch to Win10, it sounds like we can avoid using the MS account altogether if we pay attention in the beginning?

    So here’s a ‘dumb question.’ I’m using Win 7 on my computer and I never created a password to log onto my account. When my computer boots it says ‘locked’ and shows my pic and account name, but it isn’t locked, I just click on my pic and use my computer, no password.

    So does this mean I will have to create a new local account that will always require me to use a pw to sign in? I would hate to have to do that every day, have never used a pw before, and no one else has access to my computer.

    • Hi Liz; i was wondering the same thing as i had Win7 before i up-graded to 10 and did not use a password, like you. So; not wanting to go thru a local password I tried going thru the password process like Leo explains and leaving all the fields blank. Wasn’t sure if i would get locked out but got lucky; windows looked for a password the first time i brought my PC out of sleep but then opened up the desktop; and the next time i tried waking it up; it just went right to the desktop; no stop for a password at all; so it worked–just leave everything blank if you have a computer that no one else can get to.

  2. Is there a link to show how you NOT to set up a MS account when you buy a new Win10 computer? A screen shot of where that set-up option lives and how to disable it? My son doesn’t have an MS account of any kind, so I want to be able to avoid this when his new computer arrives this week. Thanks!

    “Ultimately, the best time to make sure your Windows 10 computer is not associated with a Microsoft account at all is at set-up time. Unfortunately, it’s not uncommon for that option to be overlooked.”

    • The first time you set up Win 10, there is a big screen that asks for your MS account. STOP. Look at the lower left corner of this screen, where you can find some 6-point text, in a poor contrast color, that is a hyperlink and will allow you to jump straight to a standard local machine password sign-in. MS gives you this option, they just make it hard to find and hard to even see.

      • As hard as it is to see, it’s still more obvious than it was in Windows 8. (I have an article coming up on setting up Windows 10 that includes instructions and screen shots.)

        • I can’t wait for that article on setting up Windows 10, with screen shots.
          Hope we get some kind of notification. In your newsletter?

          Thanks as always.

        • Hi Leo
          I upgraded to windows 10 from 8.1 as did my partner with his toshiba laptop. On your instructions I went into my account for no good reason except to see if i could change to a local account and that option is not merely greyed out- its simply not there. I luckily can open up my laptop (ASUS) from sleep and unless I have installed a complete update , it doesn’t ask for my password. However since my partner did likewise (from windows 7 in his case), he is forced to put in his microsoft password EVERY time he opens his laptop. I did try and to into his settings – log in options- to prevent this and nothing has changed. I haven’t yet checked if the local account option on his is missing too but i suspect any upgrades remove this option. Have you any tips on the password issue as i think he can live as I do with livemail link but not with the forced password given his laptop is never used in public or other people. Appreciated

  3. The same thing happened to me. It seems that if you run the Win10 One Note or some of the newer programmes it insists that you run it from MS Account. Once you do that your local account disappears as mine did. You simply reinstate ala Leo’s tutorial above.

    The is a problem in that once you run a local account you cannot run other new progs line one note or Cortina or whatever its called. This problem will replace the missing start button methinks !!

  4. As far as I can tell, the only way to sign onto Windows 10 without a password or PIN is to choose the settings that generate a local account at the setup screens during the upgrade. A friend wanted things that way, but “jumped the gun” and upgraded from Windows 7 to 10 on her own. She accepted the defaults. I was able to get her a local account but it still required a password. Furthermore, the new local account DID NOT SHOW ANY OF HER DESKTOP ICONS!

    Luckily, this all happened within 30 days of the Windows 10 upgrade so I could revert to Windows 7, and then install Windows 10 without accepting all the defaults about sending stuff to Microsoft. She ended up with a local account that didn’t require a password for access.

  5. Another option is to have an MS Account Login and a Local Account Login. On my personal machines I have 3 Accounts as follows: –

    1. Administrator Account – Local Account with Password (used ONLY for Admin tasks)
    2. Standard Account – Local Account with PIN (used for normal daily work)
    3. Standard Account – MS Account with Password (used for those options or tasks that require an MS Login)


  6. Some users swear by the Microsoft account login, because they like the free stuff in the store. I have never gotten anything from it, so it is not an issue. As for other benefits, well, I consider them a nuisance at best. Back when I acquired my Windows 8 computer I went with the Microsoft account login, seeing no harm in it. I stayed with it until one day my Internet access got messed up while I was playing with a spare router. Next time I tried to log in, I could not, on account of not having Internet access. I could not fix the problem, because I could not log in. Well, it took me a while to get around this catch-22, and when I did, I reverted to a local account log in. I still have the Microsoft account, but I don’t use it.

    • Interesting. I also went with the Microsoft account login when I set up my Windows 8 machine, because I didn’t see any alternative. However, I have logged on when not connected to the Internet numerous times with no problem.

  7. Hi Leo,
    I would like to do a fresh install of windows 10 instead of upgrading from windows 7 pro – since upgrading an OS is never as clean (in regards to excess file bloat) as a fresh install. Is this method even possible with Microsoft’s free upgrade offer?

    • My understanding and experience is that only true upgrades are covered. (I did a clean install on an existing machine, and even though setup recognized that there was a Windows install it still required a new product key.)

      • When I upgraded to Win 10, I was given the choice to 1. Preserve data and programs, 2. Preserve data only and 3. Preserve nothing. Wouldn’t the third and possible the second be tantamount to a fresh install?

        • One would think, and yet when I did that (preserve nothing) it required that I enter a new product key. That the technology might work one way, and the offer/policy might work another isn’t really all that surprising.

          • I know it is a pain, but couldn’t you do the upgrade and get the new key then do a clean install using the new key?

  8. I was actually surprised and a little puzzled by this article. I upgraded my Win 7 Toshiba laptop to Win 10 about 2 weeks ago. I’ve had a local sign-in password on the computer since I bought it. After installing Win 10, nothing regarding the PW process changed; it boots to a date/time screen, I click that, it disappears, my local sign-in box appears, and I enter the PW. If I go to Settings, Accounts, Your Account, it only shows “Don”…Local Account…Administrator. It does have a link to “Sign in with a Microsoft account instead”, but it did NOT automatically switch me to that option. And in case you’re wondering, I DO have a Microsoft account.

  9. I have a sinking feeling that my email (live mail) is going to disappear when I start a local account. This is an enormous pain, I always have trouble moving all the existing mail to a new account.

    Right now I have 8.1 and I am automatically logged in to the MS account – no password required. I can’t remember exactly how this was set up b/c somebody from MS did it after I bitched to Costco. Obviously I did originally put the password in and if I log out I have I have to log on again. However unless I actually log out, no pw is required. Has anyone else got this situation on 8.1, and if so why can’t you do it on 10?

    Just to sure everybody understands – if I shut down, when I restart I see a flash of the login page and then windows starts up automatically. Exactly the system I want, so how do I keep it?

    • OK Clarence but I’m not sure if you are in your MS account. Are you? Your answer reads as if you didn’t ever put in a MS password. But to use live mail or whatever it’s called this week, I have to be logged in with a password. Do you see my problem?

      I have a pw but NOW i only had to use it once. In fact I haven’t put it in in a year.

      • Yes; when I installed Win10; the first time I started it; I was required to put in my outlook. com password to get to the desktop; which i didn’t have to in Win7; and every time I woke up my PC i had to insert my password. Now i don’t have to.

        • Yes, but can you use live mail? I am guessing you cannot. If so your solution is no solution for my problem.
          Leo do you have any idea how to do this? I am guessing if I could remember how I did it in 8.1 it might be the same in 10.

          • If you mean Windows Live Mail – the program – it’s very possible that you cannot, but I don’t know. On the other hand, there are many email programs you can use instead to access the email accounts you care about that won’t require a Microsoft Account, and yet will be able to access your Microsoft Account’s email. Thunderbird is just one example.

          • My Windows 10 is set as a local login. I checked it out and I was able to access my Hotmail using the Windows Live Mail program in Windows 10. I switched to a local account, because I was repeatedly being forced to change my Microsoft password. If you use a VPN Microsoft thinks you were hacked. I would never use my Microsoft mail account for anything, not because of lack of security, but because of too much security.

  10. I did exactly that and Windows 10 “blew up”. I went back to a local computer log-in after deciding not to use my Microsoft log-in. No Start button anymore, can’t find programs, some “white & black icons” on the bottom bar that no longer worked, no Microsoft Store, and no way to watch a DVD. I spent hours on the Microsoft site trying to recover; not successful. Microsoft said they got rid of MEDISAPLAYER in ’10 and if I had a valid 7 license I could download a MEDIAPLAYER for ’10. The download said that it was for a different version of Windows.

    Well, I went back to 7 and it was fairly smooth. Initially could not login to my original local computer; no mouse or keyboard activity. Changed USB connections and got the mouse; could not type my password! Clicked mouse to advance and of course got the “wrong password” message. That fixed the problem. Could not read my Seagate backup drive; had to use CHKDSK from the CMD window to fix.

    I will wait a few months and try again…

  11. In my settings under accounts, why is it that I do not have the option like shown by you “sign in with a local account instead”? I have had serious computer invasions into my small business emails, etc. via installation of a key logger software (my belief!) that I am nervous every time I see something different! Please help. Thank you.
    – Raj

  12. Leo … Bill (above) raises a critical point about email and the pain of conversion. Will Windows Live (the MS program) be “smoothly and seamlessly” available after upgrading from 7 to 10? If not I imagine you’ll have a “How-To” article with email program options and the detailed step-by-step process. A quick search of your site came up empty on this, as expected since this is all very new.

    I use Live to back up a Gmail account. A couple years back I followed your guide to get Outlook Express files moved to a Win7 compatible program (Thanx again). I would hope and assume that the old Outlook Express files now residing in Live would come along in any conversion.

  13. If you create a local user account, either as administrator or not, from the logged in Microsoft account, would that not serve the same purpose?
    When you restart windows you would get the option to log into either account and switch between the two on the fly.

  14. What I honestly DON’T UNDERSTAND IS: WHY do folks want to stick with such a primitive OS like Microsucks Windows-10???
    Remember the text that said: “Requires Windows 98 or better”? Well, I installed Linux! In reality Ubuntu Linux 14.04.1 LTS, because it’s FREE; you don’t need an Anti-virus program; you don’t need any Anti-Mal/Spyware; there is no need to De-frag. The graphics are great, it’s easy to use and SAFE!!! For the idiots out there who just can’t forget Microsucks, there is Linux Mint, which is similar to Microsucks Windows. Then, there is also “Zeven OS 6.0 Linux” (a small, rather compact and really easy to use form of Linux) although it’s only available as a 32-Bit system. Those that have made the leap from Microsucks to Linux often wonder WHY they waited so long…. it really is THE BETTER Operating System [and the future]!!!
    You can even TRY most distros, without installing it. Run it from the DVD or a USB Thumb-drive…. NO problem!

    • Hey John – most of have heard about Linux but last I heard, Linux was declared to be rather inept when dealing with ‘wi-fi’ comms between hardware. Is that no longer the case?

    • Because many programs and alike are not supported by Linux…. simple and these are programs I want to use. Its a bit like telling everyone to use a VW , not everyone likes this car!!!

  15. I’ve had Windows 10 a couple weeks now. It seems to be bunch of Satanic Imps running the show. (Satan always pushes, while God leads) Anyway the upgrade to 10 installed/activated some applications they had no right to do so. Groove music software is a real Joke, and was installed to my Office 12 directory. I had never seen it before the upgrade to Windows 10. It took a few hours to figure out how to remove it, but I “got’er done. Use you Office Cd, and remove it through the Office Setup.
    I become angered with the popup that makes me select which browser I want to use, Edge, or Internet Explorer, and I bet if I select Edge it would never ask me again, that is what I mean about being pushed. Van

  16. it doesn’t work for built-in administrator. Unable to switch to local account from Microsoft Account.
    I can’t find a way to solve this problem.

  17. I have several computers. One is 8.1 and I have my Microsoft account logged in. And on my other I just upgraded from 7 to 10 and started with a local account. I noticed that I wasn’t getting automatic updates so I was told maybe cause I’m not logged in to my Microsoft account. So I logged into it and it changed everything to the Microsoft account. I was never asked what to do with my local accounts stuff, and its gone. All files are nowhere to be found. I then logged out and back into the local and still nothing. Is it gone forever? where did it go?

  18. HI

    I want to changed my Microsoft Hotmail account to local account , but I have problem ” some things went wrong your account was not changed to local account”
    error code: 0x80004005

    Can someone help me to solve this problem please

  19. Going to try this when I get home. I set up my new computer at the weekend and just had a local sign in. I don’t use my Hotmail/outlook/live anymore but out of curiosity I thought I’d sign in to see what weird emails I had got (it used to get emails from people thinking I was other people as I had used my name, it was my first email address in 1998 that someone at the library helped me set up) – anyway, after doing that, then all of a sudden I had to use my Hotmail password to log into windows, which was/is kind of annoying! hoping I can break the link as I don’t use my email and doubt ill use any of the other microsfot stuff either.

  20. Hi, I have changed my log on as above to a local account as I didn’t what it associated with my email address any more as I had changed my email address – I previously had windows 8 but have upgraded to the windows 10 recently. But now I cannot log onto the computer at all, it is saying my password is not recognised but I know which password I set for it! I have not brilliant with computers but understand the basics. I have tried clicking on ‘reset password’ but it is asking for a disc in order to do this? Any ideas why it has done this and how I can log onto my account? Thanks.

  21. Thank you. I about wanted to kill the MS founders until I came across your advice. You saved their lives. They should be grateful.

  22. Hi Leo – another useful article thank you. I’m trying to get my head round ‘administrators should also work with a standard account’. Is this different to a family member account > how to set up a standard account, log-in, discover sub-folder name, and would MS10 actually allow me to transfer all my data files into it? Thanks

  23. Thank you microsoft for changing my username and password without asking me or telling me and locking me out of my own computer. Why is this a feature? I was deinied access to my own computer while allowing someone else to access my personal information. I will never trust microsoft again, this has been a massive headache. This is absolutely the stupidest thing windows has done and with no heads up or even bothering to ask me (THE OWNER OF THE ******* COMPUTER)

  24. I tried to revert back to a local account, however, when I get to the screen of entering user name and password, I get a message in yellow text telling me “windows is already using that name, please enter a different user name”. How can I bypass this or keep my user name. Why would I create a different user name which would basically set up a new user account. Can someone help me with this problem, or show me a way to keep my user name. Thank you.

  25. Hi Leon,
    Thanks for the useful info. I downloaded a .rar app from the store on my PC at work and it seems automatically synced my personal laptop windows settings with my PC here at work. I managed to change the sign in settings, however, I would like to ask you and others who read my comment, how can I remove my Microsoft account from the bottom (as you have shown in the screenshot).
    The PC at work is shared and anybody accessing with local account can see the 2 options by clicking on it – Administration and Remove. When I click on remove, it says that I will use my email and all info in it. Is it actually removing my Microsoft account completely or only from the certain PC, without affecting on my laptop settings and email ?
    I am fed up with support, most of the guys working there don´t know much and since I am in Spain, non of them speaks English. So kind of trapped with this issue.
    Thank you in advance.

  26. I used a local account before setting up the Windows account. On the log in screen, I have the option to log into the Microsoft account or another account with the same name ( I’m assuming my old local account ). When the log in screen comes up, it now tells me that my password is incorrect. When I try to type in the password, it says it’s wrong. So I have to select the “new” Microsoft account, type password and log in that way. HUH??? So when I go through the steps to “log in with local account instead”, it tells me my name is already taken. WHA?? Did the Microsoft account completely Hijack my old local account and convert it to Microsoft? Why do I have TWO log in options with the same name?? Do I have to make a whole new local account with another name since it says my name is “already taken”? I don’t want my computer cluttered with unneeded accounts. What’s the deal?

    • I have a similar issue in that an existing local user account was accidentally linked to my Microsoft account. It is a sham because I was installing something and it asked me for my Microsoft account information and I had no idea it was going to link this account to the user account. I thought I was logging in just to complete the installation. Now, I want to go back to the way things were. I want to unlink the Microsoft account while preserving everything about the original local user account. When I follow your procedure above and I enter the local account information it tells me the account already exists. It seems the only way to unlink the Microsoft account is to create a brand new local user account. I don’t want to do that and I don’t know all the repercussions that will have. How can I unlink the Microsoft account and revert back to using the existing and original local account credentials. What happens when you remove a device from the online Microsoft account device management page.

      • Like Cesar above and Jason and Anthony, I’m getting the account already exists problem. How can I split my local account from my Microsoft account if it thinks it’s the same name.

        • I am also facing the same problem as mentioned by Gordon. When I started OneNote, it asked me for Microsoft account and now I can’t use my local account.
          Trying to switch to local account but get the message ‘Windows is already using that name. Please enter a different user name’.
          Please suggest how to solve this problem?

  27. I’m trying to set up a local account, after I put in a username and password at the “Switch to a local account screen” and hit enter it thinks for awhile and then comes up with the following message “The password you entered isn’t complex enough to meet this PC’s requirements. please go back and try a password that contains numbers, letters, and symbols” I have tried many passwords with number, letters, and symbols, even downloaded Microsoft’s Advanced Password Generator and tried several passwords with it but I still keep getting the “password isn’t complex enough” message. Don’t know what to do, any ideas?

  28. I tried to do so to the Administrator – built-in local account. At “Your account” section, however, there’s no “Sign in with a local account instead” link to click. What should I do? I don’t want to make another new local account.

  29. Hey, not sure if anyone is still monitoring this comment section, but I definitely would appreciate from help.

    I’ve had windows 10 for the past two weeks and have, so far, had no problems or concerns with it. Last night, however, I was prompted to make a Microsoft account after attempting to download OpenOffice from their built-in store. So I entered a junk e-mail address that I don’t actually have, something along the lines of “f***”, and a password that I don’t remember. Now normally this wouldn’t be a concern, but today, without any warning or prompt, my computer will no longer accept a login from the actual local account, but from this new junk microsoft account. I don’t remember the password, nor do I have access to the e-mail address I gave them. How is this acceptable? There’s absolutely no reason that this switch should have been made without my consent, and now my computer is at stake because of it.

    I know this is probably a dead comment section, but this is a problem that I need solving, and would appreciate any help.

  30. For Info:

    I upgraded from Win 7 to Win 10
    Mostly went OK – had to find some drivers.

    Left my house and went to a site, had no internet access.
    Eventually I got logged by setting up my mobile/cell phone as an access point.

    Thanks for the info – I have changed mine to local access because at times I could for example be in a basement with no WiFi yet need to use the PC

  31. Leo,
    I am trying to help a friend who just upgraded to windows 10 unintentionally (he was tricked to do so when MS changed the WIn 10 upgrade process) and as part of that configured his laptop to logon using the a new Windows account (created a new hotmail account) the password of which he cannot remember (when he created the hotmail account he was not prompted to enter the password twice and he may have mistyped it )

    This Laptop is now configured to log on using the hotmail account not the local account
    I know that you provided the above instruction which would enable him to switch the laptop back to local account logon but unless i am mistaken that would only work if he could log on to the laptop in the first place something which he cant do because he doesn’t know the password (sorry if i am wrong with that assumption)

    Is there any way to gain control of this laptop by using the local account logon credentials ( he remember the password for local account and hopefully still uses the standard admin username)

    Thanks for your help


    • They can go to account and try the lost password option. If they had set the account up with a recovery email or cell number, they should be able to reset the password.

      • Mark thanks for your prompt response

        As you suggested the first thing we tried was to approach MS (via and asked them to reset the password but unfortunately we did not succeed on first go (it took them over two days to come back to us) because we didn’t have the right info

        It is interesting to note that the reason why we got into this trouble was because Microsoft tricked my friend to upgrade to win 10 (many others have been complaining about this one in recent weeks) after which some things didn’t work as before
        When we tried to fix an issue with sending a scanned photo to a mail recipient by using the “mail to” option we were directed to create a Microsoft account.

        This account is now used for the logon process but alas we don’t know its password

        Out of memory while creating this account we were not given an option to link this new account to an email address nor were we asked to type the password twice (if we had this option my friend would not have mistyped the password twice)
        Today I sent another reset password request to Ms in which we gave them more info e.g one question they asked of us was who we sent emails to from this account and what folders we created . I told them that we had never used the account and tried to explain why we need to get access to it i.e locked PC etc etc

        I hope i am not talking to an automated process for if there is a human in the end of the line he or she may solve our problem

        Assuming we cant get access to that account is there any other way (other than re-imaging the HD which would be “fun” since we don’t have win 10 or win 7 media even though it is a licensed PC ) for us to gain access to reconfigure that unit to switch back to local account logon (my friend should remember that account password)

        Thanking you in advance for any info you can provide

  32. I have no local account. Just want to disable email one and sign in pc faster (ı am using apps of acconut). Any method easier?

  33. Yes, thanks Leo,
    Your advice sorted out the problem.
    What really vexed me was I had a local machine sign in and at some point without me looking (!) -I think when I accessed Onedrive, the next time I switched on, I was shown my Outlook image, hotmail address and a request for my Hotmail password. No other options.
    I detest what I call sereptitious invasion of privacy or stealth changes….shame on Microsoft.
    Those are my 2 cents.
    I shall come and visit the site again Leo.

    • Signing on to your Microsoft account is a requirement for using One Drive, that simply how Microsoft logs you on to One Drive. I don’t believe it is surreptitious. Most likely, it’s stated somewhere in the signon process. If it bothers you, you can use Google Drive or Dropbox instead.

      • Once you sign on to OneDrive (which, naturally, requires your Microsoft account), then Windows switches automatically to using that account for login. I don’t like it either.

  34. Previously I started my WIN10 computer without signing in at all, no password at all, which is the way I like it. It is my computer and I’m the only one who uses it. That is the way I want MY computer to be. I installed MS Office 365 which asked me to sign in with my hotmail password and all kinds of nasty things have happened to my computer. I just want it back the way it was. I want to be able to use it and to use Office without it taking over my computer. All this integration stuff is VERY, VERY annoying.

  35. HELP please!!!
    I have always logged in to my PC with my local account password. I just added my wife’s live email account to windows 10 mail app and now my log on screen has her name email address and I have to use her microsoft password to log in she has also become the administrator for my PC. How do I regain control of MY pc and still retain her email.

    • You have control of your PC. You;ll just need to login with her email. (It’s the same login account as before, just a different way to login.) You may also have a choice on the login screen which to use.

      • Thanks for taking the time to reply Leo. I worked out how to sign back in with my local account. I was just a bit shell shocked at how adding an email account could take over the login without asking permission.
        Anyway I won’t be using W10 Mail App, it sucks, thinks I only need to access sent and deleted mail for 1 month and no contact folder.

  36. I didn’t enter any password at W10 install. Everything was fine but It lasted until I was forced to use Mail instead of Windows Live Mail for my account. After configuring Mail, my email account (without even asking) was attached to my computer and I was forced to enter my 13 characters password each time I switch on the computer. Eventually I have solved the problem but my email account is still attached to the computer and seems to be impossible to modify it.

  37. I tried multiple times before reading your post, but it kept giving me the error about how it couldn’t change my account to a local one.

  38. I used the prescribed method to change my signon back to a local account and received the “We’re sorry, but something went wrong. Your Microsoft account wasn’t changed to a local account. Code : 0x800004005”. I’m running Windows 10.
    I’ve attempted several “fixes” that have been published but none of them work. Can you assist please?

  39. Hi, I was using my fathers PC today to print something off and when I opened my email( via google, not the app) and signed in, it signed into my Microsoft account for everything on said PC.
    Now my dads PC needs the password for my account on startup, as well as everytime one of us changes the personalization of either his PC or my laptop, it changes it for the opposing device.
    i.e.. I change my background, it changes his and vice versa
    It also states that my Microsoft account is the administrative account.
    How do I change this?

  40. please leo can you help me get my hotmail account back i have sent microsoft emails regarding my account and still ive had no help,i only know my hotmail address no password the nokia lumia that i set this up with no longer works and i know longer have the sim,i find this extremly frustrating as this has my personal stuff as my phone is no longer working and i want my photos of me and my family ,im not good atall with computers i have wasted many hours trying to read all info and i still dont uderstand,ive missed out on qulity time that could of been with my children please help leo

  41. So recently I created a Outlook account to disable xbox dvr but it seems I forgot my password and now I can’t login. Also I forgot the information I put so now Windows won’t reset my password! Please help me!

  42. Thanks for the info, I’m back to the computer sign-in but it’s still using the photo from my email! How do I change the picture it picked up from my email account? I clicked on browse for one and each time it says it’s unable to update it.

  43. Okay, so, how can I change account settings so that I can create a new (local) user account that was never associated with any online account? I don’t want any remote accounts cashed on a local machine, ever, for any reason. Yes, I could go out and create a dummy shell account to first have a microsoft account before switching account types, but I want to add multiple local accounts without creating some complex system of creating fake accounts first. Any ideas?

  44. I purposely avoided registering my new laptop with a Microsoft account because I just don’t want to be forced to do something on MY computer. So I avoided it. Recently, I purchased a new iPhone and ipad. In synching with my laptop iTunes it changed my settings and went ahead and registered the computer with a Microsoft account without my permission. Now I have to log in using my Microsoft Hotmail account, which I never use. This is insane. WTH is wrong with these people?

    • My Microsoft A/C has now been cancelled and is no longer required on my home computer………How do I now get rid of the changes that it made on my system, especially the irritating password log-on that I have NEVER had or used before. MS A/C changed this without my permission or prior warning!……..some help to undo this invasion of my privacy please!

  45. Thanks, but the problem that I am having is that I can not even log on to the computer. Late last night, my 80 year old Mother created an email account on Outlook. So, now the computer boots to the log in screen with her new email username and her password does not work. Can’t log on, can’t switch users, can’t get a desktop, can’t change anything. The computer is now officially useless.

  46. Amendment to page: With latest windows update Feb15th. re: “A few other things don’t change: Your user account folder – C:/Users/ (created when you set up Windows) – will not be renamed. It still uses the name based on your Microsoft account. (It turns out there’s really no easy way to change this.)
    Your sign-in method may also not change. For example, I had selected the option to sign in using a PIN rather than a password. [[[[[[ AFTER SWITCHING TO A LOCAL MACHINE ACCOUNT, THAT DID NOT CHANGE ]]]]]]]].” NOW they disabled or removed that pin functionality in using a local account. On reboot after the update it forced you to login with your Microsoft account, had not choice or cleverly got you to log in that way.

  47. Somehow, while trying to make a phone call with Skype Video on Windows 10, my computer account got converted to my Microsoft Account and I have no idea how this happened. It may be that I had to log into my Microsoft account while trying to make Skype work (what a piece of junk by the way) and this may have caused the problem. I am quite unimpressed with this and the need to enter a different password to log into my computer account. Lucky I know the new password well.

    A warning to the unwary.

    • Skype was bought by Microsoft a few years ago. Because of that, all Skype accounts have become Microsoft accounts.

  48. My computer now needs password to open
    Why now I did not have to use my password
    I cleaned thinking I had virus.
    because nnow I use my password to open the sistem

  49. I changed my user name and password and it worked, but unfortunately, the next screen that popped up was my MSN account, and it asked for my password in order to continue. I don’t want to have to sign on to my laptop twice. How do I get the Microsoft email window to stop popping up. I have children and I do not want them reading my emails. They now have to have my Microsoft email account password (which pops up after the original sign in) in order to get onto the laptop along with the original laptop sign in. This is ridiculous. I don’t even know how it all happened in the first place.

  50. Hiya, I set up an additional adult user account on my windows 10 pc, it worked fine to start with but now having a major problem signing in the other adult account.
    Password entered then it says “preparing windows” and stays like that for a good couple of mins then appears to log on-can see desktop etc but then this pops up “we cant sign into your account” it waffles about trying to sign out and back in again or if that doesn’t work they(?) can sign me in on a temporary account?
    Then says if I don’t sign out now all files etc created will be lost?
    I did let it sign me in on a temp account but its pants and of no use…any ideas why this is happening? – the account is an ‘additional adult’ account – my admin account has no problems? (to date lol)
    Do you think I should just swap to local account log in? and ditch the Microsoft palava…can you set all users to local log in?
    Any help appreciated x
    All I wanted was one account for my two kids to use instead of using my desktop but when I tried to set up a child account/profile it was a complete nightmare!
    This is sooo frustrating! :-/

  51. This doesn’t help. I can’t login into the Microsoft account to change it to the local account, because I don’t know the password. Please help.

  52. Hello

    The option to switch back to local account (sign in with a local account instead) is gone right?
    Any workaround?


  53. I don’t want to use Skype. I don’t want to use apps. I just want to access my Hotmail account. Have logged on 3 times today with no problem, now I get this stupide pop-up with stuff I DON’T WANT!

  54. Hi I have been trying to access my pc, but it says that the password is wrong. Which is false. I reached out to microsoft, they said that I should contact windows support instead, but I have not been able to find any contact information.
    When I turn the pc on. The screen that comes up has the wrong email address displayed but the username is mine. I don’t know how this happened but I have been able to log in my pc before I just turned it off one day and when I turned it back on that issue showed up. I am able to log in my microsoft account on other devices.

  55. Thanks! Saved me timeto find the answer and the hassle of using my MS account Pwd to sign in to my pc everytime!

  56. Hi, i have signed out of my Microsoft account due to the problem in this topic although I need to install an app but I can’t due to not having a Microsoft account what can I do about this.

    P.S. I am a teenager and don’t know what to do please reply ASAP

    Regards, Talha Qureshi

    • You should be able to create a new Microsoft account. The most common way is to open an or hotmail account and logging in with that.

  57. After installing updates to Windows 10, I can no longer access my gmail account. Asks for user name and password and/or phone number. Help me, please! The phone number doesn’t work anymore, btw.

  58. We have Windows 10 and my wife somehow changed her login background screen to a picture she doesn’t want. How can we change the background login screen back to the default like I have on my account?
    I know how to go into the registry and disable the background login or change it to a solid color, but that’s not what she wants.

    • It’s an option when changing your desktop background. (“Also use as login screen background” or similar text).

      And remember if we’re talking about a shared machine, there’s only one login screen – it’s not associated with an account since you haven’t logged in yet.

  59. I usually signed in windows 10 with a PIN. But suddenly, Windows ask me the hotmail password to sign in. I don’t want a local account. Thank you!

    • On the login screen look for “login options” (or maybe it’s “signin options”). That should allow you to choose to sign in with the pin again.

  60. I was curious about this Groove Music in Windows 10 so I clicked on it. It asked for my Microsoft Account, which I gave it. The next thing I know, I was switched to a Microsoft Account login. Remembering this article, I was able to switch it back to a local account. The other day, I accidentally clicked on Mail. I say accidentally because I don’t use this machine for email. To my surprise, there was my email. As best as I can figure, when it switched to a Microsoft Account log in, it kindly set up an account in Windows Mail.

    The computer is a shared computer, so obviously I don’t want my email to show up for anyone else who might choose to use this machine. I can see how easy it is to add an account to Windows Mail, but I can’t find a way to remove an account from Windows Mail.

  61. hi everyone
    i try to “sign in on a local account” but the link don’t work and i try to see in the “sign-in option” and it search at infinite with-out answers i had to closed the setting windows to re-enter.

    how to do otherwise please
    Best regard
    Jocelyn Brisebois

  62. I don’t not have the “sign in with a local account instead” option. I only see “manage your Microsoft account” option. In any other case, I would just delete this account and use another account to log in Windows so I am cut off from Microsoft account for good. However, the account that is associated with a Microsoft account is the default Administrator account (activated using “net user Administrator /active:yes” command). I don’t know what’ll happen if this account is deleted.

    I can think of two options (hope somebody can think of more):

    1. somehow activate the “sign in with a local account” option,
    2. re-install Windows 10 Pro.

    Anyway to do no. 1?

  63. I can’t switch back because it says the ole local account name is the one I’m logged in with 🙁
    I used my full name as my local account name, and that is the same as the Microsoft account name 🙁
    How do I get rid of the Microsoft account login, and go back to the local WITH the original name?

  64. So, just in case anyone else ends up here with a similar problem.
    I also want to change an account back to a local account. One of my kids associated their Microsoft account with my father in law’s local account on his computer, so now my managed settings are applied to this account.

    It seems that, presumably for security reasons, Microsoft removes the “Sign in with a local account instead” option when using a child account. While this is probably the way to do it, I can’t find any way to get around it.

    On chat with Microsoft, the tech specialist also says there’s no way around this. On a related note, I’ve also noticed there’s no way to do this outside the account in question, even as the computer administrator.

    The suggestion (which I haven’t yet tried) from Microsoft, other than “create another local account and move stuff” is to perform an “In place upgrade” for Windows 10 which they claim will restore the option to sign in with a local account. This still wouldn’t solve a problem where you did not have the Microsoft password for the target account.

    Finally, I’d also recommend that if you can, change your local policy settings to disable login with a Microsoft account if you really want to prevent all MS accounts on a given machine.

  65. Thank you Leo, your advise on this particular issue was very helpful to me. Ironically, when I followed your directions, I realized that it really wasn’t very difficult, but I wasn’t able to figure it out until I read article. Thanks again.

Leave a reply:

Before commenting please:

  • Read the article.
  • Comment on the article.
  • No personal information.
  • No spam.

Comments violating those rules will be removed. Comments that don't add value will be removed, including off-topic or content-free comments, or comments that look even a little bit like spam. All comments containing links and certain keywords will be moderated before publication.

I want comments to be valuable for everyone, including those who come later and take the time to read.