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  • Microsoft account vs User account

    Home Forums AskWoody support Windows Windows 10 Questions: Win10 Microsoft account vs User account

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      • #2008463 Reply

        Hi all, I’m currently running Windows 10 (1903) on a home pc with a digital licence and a local user account and have no real desire to setup a Microsoft account. So here is my question, in the event of any future activation problem or hardware failure is the only way to recover my digital licence through a Microsoft account?

        Many thanks.

      • #2008517 Reply
        Da Boss

        Your digital license should be connected to the device, whether or not you have a Microsoft ID or are using one..

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2008612 Reply
        Rick Corbett

        in the event of any future activation problem or hardware failure is the only way to recover my digital licence through a Microsoft account?

        In my experience, activation of a previously activated Win 10 install is automatic (and robust) without the need to use a Microsoft account (MSA).

        I’ve *never* set up a device using an MSA, only a local account (and I *never* install a device whilst it’s connected to the internet).

        (I did set up an MSA when Win 10 first came out, just to see what OneDrive and the Store was like. I’ve never found the MSA useful to me so have never used it since.)

        I *always* carry out clean installs on my own devices (never inline upgrades to an existing installation), including deleting *all* existing partitions so the installation starts with uninitialized storage. (Even with Win 7 to Win 10 upgrades I’ve always carried out clean installs – see Clean Install Windows 10 Directly without having to Upgrade First for more info.)

        I’ve replaced several HDDs with SSDs and/or replaced small capacity (128GB) SSDs with much larger ones… and Win 10 activation has taken these hardware changes in its stride without once faltering.

        In my experience the Win 10 activation process is extremely robust, more so than Win 7’s. (I never liked Win 8.x so, after a day of experimenting, have tried to avoid it ever since.) For more info about the change to activation, see this ZDNet Microsoft quietly rewrites its activation rules for Windows 10 article.

        Once a device’s unique Win 10 digital licence is stored on MS’ activation servers then subsequent clean installs have *always* activated for me within a minute or two of the device’s first connection to the internet… even after making a hardware change like replacing the HDD/SSD.

        The longest I had to wait was 5 minutes… and I did a restart of the device just in case it was something I had done. I just think it was a blip… with the delay more likely to be latency with my ISP’s broadband rather than with MS’ activation servers.

        Hope this helps…

        1 user thanked author for this post.
      • #2008918 Reply

        Many thanks for your posts in reply to my inquiry, very helpful.

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