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How to change your account password on Windows 10

Windows 10 Change Account Password
Windows 10 Change Account Password (Image credit: Windows Central)

On Windows 10, using a strong password is one of the best ways to secure your account and protect your data from prying eyes and malicious individuals. Usually, once you set a password on your account, you don't have to change it periodically anymore, but you'll still need to update this information if you want to use a new secret phrase, it ever gets compromised, or you simply forget your current password.

Whatever the reason it might be, Windows 10 includes several easy methods to change your password, whether you're using a Microsoft account or a local account.

In this Windows 10 guide, we'll walk you through the different ways to change (or reset) the password of your computer account.

How to change account password on Windows 10

To change your Windows 10 account password, use these steps:

Important: Change the account password connected to a Microsoft account will also change the password of your Microsoft services, including Outlook.com, OneDrive, etc., associated with your account.

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on Accounts.
  3. Click on Sign-in options.
  4. Under the "Manage how you sign in to your device" section, select the Password option.
  5. Click the Change button.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Confirm your current password.
  2. Create a new password.Quick note: As a security measure, once you change the password, you can no longer set the old password back into your account.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the Next button.
  2. Click the Finish button.

Once you complete the steps, you can start using the password to sign in to your Windows 10 account.

How to change local account password on Windows 10

If you're using a local account, the Settings app allows you to change the password as well as the security answers.

Updating password

To change a local account password, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on Accounts.
  3. Click on Sign-in options.
  4. Under the "Manage how you sign in to your device" section, select the Password option.
  5. Click the Change button.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Confirm your current password.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the Next button.
  2. Create a new password.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Specify a password hint that won't make it easier for others to guess your secret phrase.
  2. Click the Next button.
  3. Click the Finish button.

After you complete the steps, the password will change in your local account.

Updating security questions

To update the security questions for a local account, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on Accounts.
  3. Click on Sign-in options.
  4. Under the "Manage how you sign in to your device" section, select the Password option.
  5. Click the Update your security questions option.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Confirm your current password.
  2. Click the OK button.
  3. Select and answer each security question.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the Finish button.

Once you complete the steps, if you ever need to sign in and you forgot your password, you'll be able to answer the security questions to reset the password and sign in.

How to change account PIN on Windows 10

If you're using a PIN as your Windows 10 account password, you can also change it to something different.

To change a PIN on Windows 10, use these steps:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on Accounts.
  3. Click on Sign-in options.
  4. Under the "Manage how you sign in to your device" section, select the Windows Hello PIN option.
  5. Click the Change button.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Confirm your current PIN.
  2. Ceate a new PIN.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. (Optional) Check the Include letters and symbols option if you want a PIN similar to a password.
  2. Click the OK button.

After you complete the steps, you can start using the new PIN without affecting your Microsoft account password.

How to change account picture password on Windows 10

If you happen to be using a picture password (for example, in your tablet), you can change the picture and gestures using these steps:

  1. Open Settings.
  2. Click on Accounts.
  3. Click on Sign-in options.
  4. Under the "Manage how you sign in to your device" section, select the Picture Password option.
  5. Click the Change button.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Type your current account password.
  2. Click the OK button.
  3. Click the Choose new picture button.Quick tip: If you forgot the gestures, click the Replay button to remember.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Select a new image.
  2. Click the Open button.
  3. Click the Use this picture button.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Create the new gestures that you want to use for password twice.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the Finish button.

Once you complete the steps, the picture password will reset, and you can now start using the gestures to sign in to Windows 10.

If you ever forget the gestures, you can't reset it from the Sign-in screen, but you can click the Sign-in options link to use a different method of authentication.

How to reset password from Sign-in screen on Windows 10

You can also change your account password using the reset option from the Sign-in screen.

To reset a password from the Sign-in screen, use these steps:

  1. In the Sign-in screen, click the I forgot my password option.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Select the verification option depending on your previous configuration. For example, getting a code on an alternate email account.
  2. Confirm the hinted email address.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the Get code butotn.
  2. Check your email account to copy the code.
  3. Confirm the code you received.

Confirm email verify code to change password

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the Next button.
  2. Create a new password.

Windows 10 sign-in screen create new password

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the Next button.

Once you complete the steps, you can now use the new password to access any device connected with the same Microsoft account.

How to reset local password from Sign-in screen on Windows 10

To change the password of a local account from the Sign-in screen, use these steps:

  1. In the Sign-in screen, type an incorrect password and press Enter.
  2. Click the OK button.
  3. Click the Reset password option.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Answer the three security questions and press Enter.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Create a new password and press Enter.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

After you complete the steps, the account password will change, and you'll have access to your desktop again.

How to reset PIN from Sign-in screen on Windows 10

It's recommended to change your PIN using the Settings app, but if it's not working, you can also create a new one from the Sign-in screen.

To reset your PIN from the Sign-in screen, use these steps:

  1. In the Sign-in screen, click the I forgot my PIN option.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Confirm your Microsoft account password.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the Sign-in button.
  2. Select the verification option depending on your previous configuration. For example, getting a code on an alternate email account.
  3. Confirm the email address of the hinted account.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the Send code button.
  2. Check your email account to copy the code.
  3. Confirm the code you received.
  4. Click the Verify button.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Read the warning and click the Continue button.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Create new PIN.

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)
  1. Click the OK button.

Once you complete the steps, you can start using the new PIN to access your computer. However, you may need to sign in again on certain apps as applicable.

Mauro Huculak is technical writer for WindowsCentral.com. His primary focus is to write comprehensive how-tos to help users get the most out of Windows 10 and its many related technologies. He has an IT background with professional certifications from Microsoft, Cisco, and CompTIA, and he's a recognized member of the Microsoft MVP community.

23 Comments
  • Make sure you use something stupid like "password" to replace it....
  • I love being down voted for noting something that 30% of PC users foolishly do....keep up the love...
  • It wasn't me! Indeed many people these days use the "best" passwords... then come to me saying they forgot their password, which was "password".
  • Precisely my point...
  • Can This "How To" stop?
  • Why should it??
  • This site is for Windows nerds and casual Windows users alike. Do a Bing search for "Windows 10 Help" and you'll likely see Windows Central in the top 5 results. You don't need to read the How-To's if you already know how to do something...
  • And as a shocker, if you do a Google search, Windows Central is still in the top 5 results. :))
  • So you want us to stop helping people, yes? In that case, no, it won't stop. Ever. :)
  • No I don't want You to stop helping people. But seriously, A how to on changing your background or password?
  • Yes, this way when a casual user doesn't know what to do to change their password, and they do a web search for "How to change my account password in Window 10," this will be one of the first results. The sure gains more traffic, a someone gets the help they need.
  • Not everyone in this universe is "arjan wolthuis" :)
  • Easiest way to get attention, y/y?
  • Just skip it dude if you don't like it
  • It's all about you I see.
  • XD
  • Hi guys, serious help needed: My friend needed to change password because he forgot it (autologin..). So we made a reset through outlook.com site, after first restart OneDrive app asked for password, after second restart Windows also asked for password. After that, I've disabled/enabled autologin through netplwiz. But he can't edit files in Personal folders (Documents, Pictures..) anymore. In file security it shows Account Unknown with 1002 id, while there is only single user with -1001 id. I can fix it by taking ownership of folder, but it's just temporary until next restart. What can I do with this except of reseting system or creating new account and moving old data into it ?
  • What if I don't want a password at all for my Windows,PC?
  • if using MS account, netplwiz, disable asking for password there ..  if using Local account, password is not mandatory
  • Lol!!!
    That's why Mac OS & Linux leads (because of their user friendly functions)
  • I cant sign in using a pin like before. Have to use full password. Annoying. Go into the pin thing in settings and put in a pin but it does not stick. I've been a insider. Seems people that didnt do the insider thing pin works fine. It remembers that you did that before. Any suggestions?
  • Today i contacted microsoft support team for accounts related problem in windows 10 settlings. They tried for 4hours Taking control over my pc, but they were unable to solve it.
  • My windows10 doesn't even have the option to sign in to Microsoft account.... Store not working..... I upgraded my windows 7 via Windows update and this upgraded os is full of bugs.