On Windows 10, there could be a lot of reasons to change an account name. For instance, even though many people are comfortable revealing their names in the Sign-in screen, some users may consider this a privacy concern — especially for those using their devices in a public place. You recently changed your name, and you want to display the new information. Or you're using a local account, and you want to show your full name instead of the account name.
Whatever the reason it might be, you can change the name that appears in the Sign-in screen as you try to access your Windows 10 account. However, it's not a straightforward process, depending on whether you're using a Microsoft account or a local account, you'll need to use different instructions.
In this Windows 10 guide, we'll walk you through the different ways to change the account name that shows up in the Sign-in screen for accounts linked to a Microsoft account or local account.
How to change account name using Settings
If you're using a Microsoft account to sign in to Windows 10, the account pulls down the name you see on the sign-in screen from the cloud. If you want to change the account name, you'll need to update your online account settings.
To change your account name on Windows 10, use these steps:
- Open Settings.
- Click on Accounts.
- Click on Your info.
Click the Manage my Microsoft account option.
- Sign in with your credentials (if applicable).
- Under the account picture, in the top-left, click the More actions menu.
Select the Edit profile option.
Click the Edit name option.
Change your account name by confirming the new name and last name as needed.
Quick tip: If you want to make your information more private, you can opt to use the first six letters of your name and the first two letters of your last name (often known as "6x2" by administrators).
- Confirm the challenge to verify that you're not a robot trying to make changes to the account.
- Click the Save button.
- Restart your device.
Once you complete the steps, the name on the Sign-in screen will be updated with the new changes. However, you may need to allow some time before the changes sync and apply to all your devices.
Although using the Microsoft account settings is a convenient way to change your account name across your devices, these instructions will also change the name and last name that appears in your email account and other Microsoft services.
How to change account name using Control Panel
Alternatively, if you're using a local account, which isn't linked to a Microsoft account, you'll need to use Control Panel to change your account name.
Changing account name with User Accounts
To change your Windows 10 account name using the User Accounts settings, use these steps:
- Open Control Panel.
Under the "User Accounts" section, click the Change account type option.
Select the local account to change its name.
Click the Change the account name option.
Change the Windows 10 local account name as you want it to appear in the Sign-in screen.
- Click the Change Name button.
After you complete the steps, sign-out, and the Sign-in screen should now display the new name.
Changing account name with netplwiz
You can also use the legacy user account settings (netplwiz) available with Control Panel to accomplish the same task.
To update the name of your account with the legacy "User Accounts" settings, use these steps:
- Open Start.
- Search for netplwiz and click the top result to open the legacy User Accounts settings.
- Click the Users tab.
- Select the account to update.
Click the Properties button.
- (Optional) Update the "User name" field to change the account nickname.
Confirm the new account name in the "Full Name" field.
Quick tip: If you want to display a nickname instead of your real name, you can leave the "Full Name" field empty.
- Click the Apply button.
- Click the OK button.
- Click the OK button again.
Once you complete the steps, sign-out and the Sign-in screen should display the name you specified in the "Full Name" field.
Although using these settings, you can also edit accounts linked to a Microsoft account, if you change any information using these steps, after restarting your device, the Sign-in screen will reset this information and display your Microsoft account name.
Changing account name with Computer Management
To change the account name using Computer Management, use these steps:
- Open Start.
- Search for Computer Management and click the top result to open the console.
- Expand the System Tools branch.
- Double-click the Local Users and Groups branch.
- Click on Users.
Right-click the account and select the Properties option.
Quick tip: You can use the Rename option to change the profile nickname.
- Click the General tab.
In the "Full name" field, specify a new name for the account.
- Click the Apply button.
- Click the OK button.
After you complete the steps, sign out of the account, and now, the Sign-in screen will display the new name of the local account.
While you have multiple ways to change the name of an account, there's not an option to change the profile folder name. You may be able to find some workarounds, but it's not recommended to use those steps as you may end up coming across other issues.
If you don't want to leave any breadcrumbs of the previous account name, you should consider creating a new account with a new name, and then transfer all your files to the new account.
More Windows 10 resources
For more helpful articles, coverage, and answers to common questions about Windows 10, visit the following resources:
- Windows 10 on Windows Central – All you need to know
- Windows 10 help, tips, and tricks
- Windows 10 forums on Windows Central
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