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  • How to set up and use a Microsoft account in Windows

    Home Forums AskWoody blog How to set up and use a Microsoft account in Windows

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      • #2352078
      • #2352121
        WSDKS01
        AskWoody Plus

        Many years ago, possibly twenty or more, Bell Canada’s Sympatico internet service, which dates back to 1994 (I signed up the day they went public on a tip from a Bell Canada employee who had tested the service)  had their e-mail managed by Microsoft through Hotmail. That meant, as far as I could tell, that sympatico.ca accounts were actually hotmail.com accounts and could be used as Microsoft credentials. I have discovered that to this day, although Sympatico no longer uses Microsoft Hotmail for their e-mail provider, a sympatico.ca account is still valid for any Microsoft account function including Microsoft store purchases, downloads and as Windows login credentials. It could probably be used for any Microsoft 365 functions as well, although I refuse to touch rented software at any price nor use cloud storage, either.

        If you have a sympatico.ca account, you actually have a Microsoft account. I wonder how many other ISP’s accounts give you similar credentials with Windows?

      • #2352191
        bbearren
        AskWoody MVP

        I have a number of Microsoft accounts, but none in Windows.  In Windows I use only local accounts.  I have neither need nor desire to sync my devices.  I use my Microsoft account credentials for Microsoft 365, OneDrive, and outlook.com for an email account.  However my main email accounts (and most reliable) are hosted by my web hosting service.

        OneDrive eliminates, for me, any need to synchronize anything.  Everything that I might want to sync is already synced on OneDrive, easy to access.  When I sign into Windows using my local account, OneDrive signs into the cloud using one of my Microsoft accounts automatically.

        On occasion, I get the “problem with your Microsoft account” popup.  I go to outlook.com, sign into an email account, sign out, and no more “problem with your Microsoft account”.  I’ve tried that same technique with going online to Microsoft 365. signing in, then signing out, with the same result; no more “problem with your Microsoft account”.

        But in Windows, a local account does everything I need.

        Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
        "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
        "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

      • #2352195
        anonymous
        Guest

        I specifically set up Windows 10 computers without a Microsoft account.  I only want local accounts or domain accounts on my computers.

        I’m really not sure why anyone would actually want a Microsoft account, but I don’t play xbox, don’t use cortana, and manage my own equipment.  Windows 10 is not a particularly good operating system and has become a necessary evil because there are no realistic alternatives.  And before anyone says it – I also use Linux and actually like it, but realize it is in no way a Windows replacement because there is no way to still run the legacy Windows software many users still need to use.

        Back in the day, if you didn’t want to use Microsoft’s MS-DOS you had alternatives like DR-DOS and a few others.  They were fully compatible.  Admittedly it was a much simpler time in technology back then, but I miss the ability to have a real choice.

      • #2352286
        anonymous
        Guest

        How certain can we be that a Microsoft account, or the data which it enables Microsoft to access on our own computers or in the cloud, will not be used for purposes we may not be comfortable with — advertising, spying, ID theft by hackers, sharing with repressive authorities, etc.? Many people are willing to surrender their privacy for better-functioning software services, but some of us want to make informed, conscious choices.  Big companies are in business to advance their shareholders’ interests, which may not be the same as their users. Caveat emptor!

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2352671
          doriel
          AskWoody Lounger

          Good question. You can adjust what data Microsoft can collect during the creation of the account (OoBE). Simply answer NO to every question raised. But even this is done, MSFT will still collect your data. There is no simple defence against it I think.
          Even with local account there are data collected and sent to MSFT. I really dont know what MSFT is doing with them, they are very “mysterious” about data they collect.
          Recently there were topic, what data Google and Apple collects. Look how loooong the list is 🙂

          I wish Microsoft would come up with similar thing, but I believe after that done, noone would want to use their “erratic” operating system anymore.

          I believe that our data are basically safe at Microsoft, but I think we would not like the ammount of data they collect. Same with apple ang google. At least our data SHOULD be anonimized.

          Dell Latitude E6530, Intel Core i5 @ 2.6 GHz, 4GB RAM, W10 1809 Enterprise

          HAL3000, AMD Athlon 200GE @ 3,4 GHz, 8GB RAM, Fedora 29

          • This reply was modified 2 weeks, 3 days ago by doriel. Reason: additional info
          2 users thanked author for this post.
      • #2352413
        shrek2021
        AskWoody Plus

        Using a Microsoft Account becomes a necessity on your Windows 10 desktop or laptop. Let me tell you why?

        OneDrive, Microsoft Office 365, Skype, Outlook.com, Mail kind of services are connected to this account. So in the initial days, I tried to disconnect the Microsoft account and use a local account. But when I wanted to use OneDrive, it was trying to link up the parent account.

        If you are sure that you are not going to use any cloud or internet enabled services, then you can go for a local account. Trying to logout and login for each service connected to Microsoft account is a big headache. It is better you connect the account once and put a second authentication method like PIN which is much faster.

        I’m using it on 20H2 and had no problems till now. Yes, may be since it is linked to the Internet there can be slow performance issues on some apps, if the interent is slow. But Windows 7 which used to use local account was much quicker.

        Since security is also important we have to move to Windows 10 with a Microsoft account. You can have a look at my review.

        • #2352530
          bbearren
          AskWoody MVP

          Using a Microsoft Account becomes a necessity on your Windows 10 desktop or laptop.

          That is not at all true.

          I use Microsoft 365, OneDrive and I have a couple or three outlook.com email addresses.  None of my machines have a Microsoft account; all use local accounts only.

          I use Outlook for my email client.  To collect email from my outlook.com account all I have to do is setup that password in Outlook; I don’t have to log into my PC using a MS account.  Outlook uses that account and password to access my outlook.com email, just like my other non-Microsoft email accounts.

          I use OneDrive.  It syncs regularly on both my desktop and my NAS.  The only thing necessary to enable syncing is to sign into OneDrive using the Microsoft account I setup online with OneDrive.  It logs into OneDrive automatically on startup; I don’t have to use that Microsoft account to sign into my PC.

          Create a fresh drive image before making system changes/Windows updates, in case you need to start over!
          "When you're troubleshooting, start with the simple and proceed to the complex."—M.O. Johns
          "Experience is what you get when you're looking for something else."—Sir Thomas Robert Deware

          • This reply was modified 2 weeks, 4 days ago by bbearren. Reason: clarity
          1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2352448
        Alex5723
        AskWoody Plus

        OneDrive, Microsoft Office 365, Skype, Outlook.com,

        I don’t use any of these services. Use local account on Windows 10.

      • #2352480
        Mele20
        AskWoody Lounger

        I have 3 Microsoft accounts.  NONE are needed for Windows 10 version 2004.  I avoid all Microsoft services.  Basilisk is my default browser and I have ALWAYS set my computers up, since my first one in 1999, with a LOCAL account.  I use Winaero Tweaker to keep Windows Updates from running except for about one minute each morning when I check for Windows Defender updates.  I use the advice here and Belarc Advisor (free version) to tell me what Microsoft updates I need each month once this site raises the Defcon level.  I fetch the needed updates via the Microsoft Catalog site and, when ready to install them, I unblock Windows Updates in Win Aero Tweaker long enough to install the updates I have downloaded to disk from Microsoft Catalog.

        I login to a Microsoft account ONLY when I am on the Microsoft store and want to download an app or new wallpaper, etc.

        • #2352494
          doriel
          AskWoody Lounger

          MS account is “must-have” on Windows in S mode, where you can install only applications from MSstore. But for me, local account is still the best way of dealing with my computer. I use MS account only for MS Store and for MS web to post questions and answers there.

          Dell Latitude E6530, Intel Core i5 @ 2.6 GHz, 4GB RAM, W10 1809 Enterprise

          HAL3000, AMD Athlon 200GE @ 3,4 GHz, 8GB RAM, Fedora 29

      • #2352489
        doriel
        AskWoody Lounger

        Shrek2021 wrote:

        Since security is also important we have to move to Windows 10 with a Microsoft account. You can have a look at my review.

        Nice review there, I like it. But how is it safer to have my credentials and data stored on the cloud? I consider data safer on the local storage, instead of data srored on more computers at the same time, including my billing credentials for example.

        Dell Latitude E6530, Intel Core i5 @ 2.6 GHz, 4GB RAM, W10 1809 Enterprise

        HAL3000, AMD Athlon 200GE @ 3,4 GHz, 8GB RAM, Fedora 29

      • #2352504
        shrek2021
        AskWoody Plus

        But how is it safer to have my credentials and data stored on the cloud?

        I’m talking about updates Windows 10 provides. Since Windows 7 is no longer supported, it’s always back of your mind that something is going to happen.

        Yes, I agree to not to give your credentials. But privacy rules have changed a lot in the last couple of years. For example, apps on mobile phones use some sort of our data. Also what about visiting web sites. Cookies are in place which store certain information.

        But as I said, if you are not an Internet geek, then its safe to use a local account. Otherwise, how do you intend to use OneDrive?

        1 user thanked author for this post.
        • #2352518
          doriel
          AskWoody Lounger

          MS Account does not backup your PC data, unless you put it on the OneDrive.
          If you lose your data on local (C:\, D:\, …) drive, then even MS Account does not recover your data. The only thing that remains is the OneDrive and maybe some aesthetic settings.

          Dell Latitude E6530, Intel Core i5 @ 2.6 GHz, 4GB RAM, W10 1809 Enterprise

          HAL3000, AMD Athlon 200GE @ 3,4 GHz, 8GB RAM, Fedora 29

        • #2352525
          doriel
          AskWoody Lounger

          When I think about it now, MS Account could backup you other services bundled to your Windows account. Such as Xbox account and things like that. If you lose your computer, your progress will be saved to “the cloud” in the games you play.

          Dell Latitude E6530, Intel Core i5 @ 2.6 GHz, 4GB RAM, W10 1809 Enterprise

          HAL3000, AMD Athlon 200GE @ 3,4 GHz, 8GB RAM, Fedora 29

      • #2352498
        anonymous
        Guest

        I use Windows 10 Home (64bit) and Kaspersky Internet Security.

        A close relative recently invited me to use Microsoft 365 (aka Office) as a ‘Family Member’. I therefore gave my Microsoft Account login name which was @RocketMail.com, and in due course was able to download and install MS365.

        When using either Word or Excel Kaspersky Internet Security gave a warnings about a Certificate Error, in the report there was:

        “Object name : autodiscover.rocketmail.com
        Reason : Invalid name of certificate. Either the name is not on the allowed list, or was explicitly excluded.”

        After several exchanges on the KIS Forum I decided to change the MS Account Login to @Gmail.com

        – Result – no more Certificate Errors with MS365 Apps (so far)!

         

        • #2352516
          doriel
          AskWoody Lounger

          Seems like rocketmail provider has security (certificate) issues. Its better to move away from them.
          Autodiscover file is a list of different parameters for using your email.
          Path to your autodiscover is stored in the registry
          HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Office\XY.Z\Outlook\AutoDiscover

          Change the XYZ for your current Office version (14.0, 16.0)

          Obviously there was inconsistency in the certificate. Maybe they do not update their service anymore, thus there are possible security issues.

          Dell Latitude E6530, Intel Core i5 @ 2.6 GHz, 4GB RAM, W10 1809 Enterprise

          HAL3000, AMD Athlon 200GE @ 3,4 GHz, 8GB RAM, Fedora 29

          • #2352618
            anonymous
            Guest

            @doriel

            Thank you for your comments to my post.

            I’ve looked in my Reg, but cannot see the Autodiscover key that you mentioned in your post.

            BTW, I was not  attempting to access Rocketmail service via MS365 Outlook. I’m happy to continue with webmail access.

            RM was my original login ‘name’ to my MS Account

            I guess the certificate error is related to Rocketmail becoming part of Yahoo ’empire’.

            1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2352511
        shrek2021
        AskWoody Plus

        After several exchanges on the KIS Forum I decided to change the MS Account Login to @Gmail.com

        That is always an option. You can either use @hotmail or @outlook.com or some of the email providers Microsoft allows for its account creation. KIS and Microsoft account combination are new to me.

        I’m using Windows Security on my Windows 10 Pro (64 bit) and had no problems till now.

      • #2352528
        shrek2021
        AskWoody Plus

        MS Account does not backup your PC data, unless you put it on the OneDrive

        Windows users use cloud drives for a quick and safe way to save documents and other important stuff. We should not think OneDrive as a backup and restore drive for your PC data.

        On that note, I found that OneDrive plays well with Windows OS, instead of other cloud drives like DropBox, GoogleDrive etc. I always find them not syncing well or having problems compared to OneDrive.

      • #2354546
        dmt_3904
        AskWoody Plus

        I have had a MS account for a long time.  I have a question about changing my MS account password. Changing a password is easy, right? Not so with some accounts – like Microsoft (or Appleid for that matter)! There are so many impacts now, I need to confirm what has to be done when I change the password, which has been a while. Things have changed since my last pw change!

        I have a Microsoft account and O365 paid subscription, Onedrive on a Laptop, IPAD, iPhone. I have 2FA, app pasword and MS Authenticator setup. I think when I logon, I will get a request from Authenticator and a code, correct? Sometimes it sends a code, sometimes, it doesn’t. This is what I think I will need to do, looking for feedback on if I’ve missed anything:
        1. Logon to Microsoft Account.  Change password.
        2. Log out of all O365 apps on Laptop and log in with new password.
        3. For Onedrive on laptop – log out & login with new pw? Or will it update with above steps?
        4. On IOS devices – I can logout and back in for email – but in the past, it would ask for the updated password after a period of time – either waiting or turning device on / off. I haven’t found another way to get the IOS devices to take the updated passwords – have you? I was given an app password last time I logged on, I think it was when I added 2FA to my MS account. So I think it will ask for the app password.
        5. For Onedrive on IOS – logout and login w/new pw?

        I think that’s it for where it needs to be updated, unless I am missing anything, please advise: MS acccount, O365, Onedrive on Laptop, IOS. Thanks.

        • #2355654
          dmt_3904
          AskWoody Plus

          I am going to answer my own post ; )  In case it helps anyone.

          I bit the bullet and updated my MSA password yesterday.  I was asked to login again to onedrive & Outlook on laptop (outlook had a message that said there was a problem and a button to click “Fix me”, which I did). The office 365 apps did not ask for the new password – so far so good there. I got a message that I needed a new app password for outlook mail on iOS, this is because I have 2FA & the Authenticator app. I got the new app password but my iOS devices are not asking for the pw update. I am sending and receiving mail on them but I think at some point they should ask for the new password. The last time I changed my password it took a while for iOS to request the new password. I do not see any place to put in a new password for iOS for Outlook mail app (or in iOS mail app for that matter). I have shut down the mail app, turned my phone off and on again. I suppose I could delete the app and add it back, but that’s pretty drastic for a password change (which I had to find out how to do – the delete outlook mail app function is in the “Settings” on Outlook mail app, not in IOS account or email settings!).

          After several hours:

          • the iPAD Outlook finally showed a message that I needed to logon again, as did Onedrive.  However, when I clicked on those links, I received a msg from Authenticator – not a request for the app password.  But it’s working.  I was not asked to login again on O365 apps – perhaps it’s one & done.
          • the iPhone has not asked for any updates, but it’s working.  I did not delete the mail app, but I did resync.  Still I don’t think I’ve entered the new pw!? Now I can’t remember.  Definitely did not enter the app password.

          It’s working for now. But I wish it were more straightforward for updating the password on IOS devices.  Just seems so loosey goosey try this, try that, delete the app, maybe you’ll get message to sign in again  – I mean c’mon change a password! Why isn’t there an explicit method of doing that as there is for every other program/app we use?

           

      • #2355189
        WSrelamb9999
        AskWoody Plus

        I have Win 10 Professional on my work laptop, we recently installed a newer version of Office 365 to provide us with Teams.

        Now on to my problem, because you have to logon to Teams each time you use it, my password for Microsoft complex. somewhere along the lines I changed it and didn’t save it (I know stupid) as I was using the Authentication App. Now I have no way to login to Microsoft or any way to change my password. Also this is a business logon and I can’t change the logon it’s tied to my email etc. I have followed all the steps MS provides to no avail.

        Now were changing our version of Office 365 again to enterprise edition, because of the in-capabilities of the Teams in the Business Version of Office 365 Teams.

        Any thoughts help would be very much appreciated, or ways to contact support @ MS

        Thank you.

        • #2355652
          dmt_3904
          AskWoody Plus
        • #2355658
          joep517
          AskWoody MVP

          I have Teams from an E3 Office 365 subscription. I do not have to login each time Teams starts. I do have my account set to stay logged on to Office.

          To get your password try this. Press the Windows key. Start typing “credential manager” without the quotation marks. Click on “Credential Manager” to open it. Click on “Windows Crdentials”. Look for your Microsoft Account. You should be able to copy the password.

          You should be able to find a password revealer with a simple internet search if you need it. Or use a program like WebBrowserPassView if you have typed the password into a browser and let the browser save it.

          --Joe

          • #2355661
            dmt_3904
            AskWoody Plus

            Oh I was not aware of this! Good to know. I checked mine, it shows a logon for xbox live –  I know it comes with MSA, but I don’t want, need, use it.  Credentials has as a lot of other stuff too, that I don’t necessarily use, but the dates are old on them. XBOX is modified today.  Can I delete it?

            • This reply was modified 4 days, 9 hours ago by dmt_3904.
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