How To Change, Reset, And Picturize Your Windows 8 Password

Chris Hoffman 18-02-2013

Windows 8 brings quite a few password-related changes. It uses Microsoft accounts Microsoft Is NOT Ready To Support Windows 8: A Case In Point Windows 8 is upon us! Excited, I've installed the shiny new OS and tried to install my first app from the new Store, only to be notified that my "purchase couldn't be completed" (it was... Read More by default, which means that your log in password is the same as the password for your Microsoft account online. You can reset this password online if you ever forget it. Windows 8 also allows you to create picture passwords, an ideal feature for touchscreen tablets.


The new version of Windows also has many of the features built into previous versions of Windows, such as the hidden ability to log on automatically Two Unique Ways To Log Into Your Windows Computer Without Typing A Password Read More . Features such as picture passwords can be used by any type of user account, but you’ll have to reset your Windows password the old-fashioned way if you’re using a local user account and forget its password.

Automatically Log Into Windows

Passwords are an important security feature, but you may not want to bother with them. If you have a desktop computer Laptop vs. Desktop: Pros, Cons, and Which Should You Get? Need a new computer but not sure whether to choose a laptop or desktop? Here's what you need to know! Read More in a secure location, you can choose to skip the password prompt entirely and have Windows log in automatically.

To do so, press Windows Key + R to open the Run dialog. Type netplwiz into the dialog box and press Enter.

change windows 8 password

Uncheck the “Users must enter a username and password to use this computer” checkbox and click OK.

reset windows 8 password

You’ll be asked to enter your password. Windows will remember this password and use it to sign you in automatically.

reset windows 8 password

Change Your Password

To change your password, open the Settings charm (press Windows Key + I Windows Keyboard Shortcuts 101: The Ultimate Guide Keyboard shortcuts can save you hours of time. Master the universal Windows keyboard shortcuts, keyboard tricks for specific programs, and a few other tips to speed up your work. Read More to quickly open the Settings charm) and select Change PC settings.

reset windows 8 password

Select the Users category and click the Change your password button. You’ll be asked to provide your current password and a new password.

windows 8 password reset

Note that you can’t change a Microsoft account’s password from the desktop version of the Control Panel. You’ll just see a link taking you to the PC settings application. IF you’re using a local user account instead of a Microsoft account, you can change the password from the Control Panel normally.

windows 8 password reset

Reset a Microsoft Account Password

If you’re using a Microsoft Account instead of a local user account, you can reset your password online if you forget it. To do so, visit the Reset Your Password page on Microsoft’s website. Enter your account’s email address and enter the CAPTCHA code Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About CAPTCHAs But Were Afraid To Ask [Technology Explained] Love them or hate them - CAPTCHAs have become ubiquitous on the Internet. What on earth is a CAPTCHA anyway, and where did it come from? Responsible for eye-strain the world over, the humble CAPTCHA... Read More to confirm you’re a human being, not a robot.

There are a number of ways to receive a reset link, including via email to the address associated with your account, a code sent via SMS message to a phone you’ve associated with your account, and a PC you’ve trusted to access your Microsoft account.

windows 8 password reset

Reset a Local Account Password

If you’re using a local user account, you’ll have to use the traditional methods to gain access if you forget your password.

Like Windows 7, Windows 8 includes a tool that allows you to create a password reset disk. If you create a password reset disk ahead of time, you can use it in the future if you ever forget your password. To open the tool, press the Windows key to access the Start screen, type password reset disk, and tap the Settings category. Open the Create a password reset disk tool.


If you didn’t create a password reset disk ahead of time, you’ll have to use a tool like Ophcrack to crack your WIndows password How To Unlock Your Computer After Forgetting Your Windows Login Most passwords aren’t that difficult to reset, particularly those online. There is one that can give you trouble, however – your Windows login password. If you forget this you will be locked out of your... Read More or a password-reset tool like the Offline NT Password Disk 3 Ways to Reset a Forgotten Windows Administrator Password Forgetting your computer password is scary, but you still have options. Here are three easy methods to reset your Windows administrator password and get back into your computer. Read More .

Of course, you can always reinstall Windows 8 and create a new local user account to regain access to your computer.

windows login

Create a Picture Password

Windows 8 also allows you to log in with a picture password. Like a lot of things on Windows 8, this feature is designed for a touch screen, It’s easier to log into a touch-based Windows system with a few gestures on a picture instead of tapping away on a virtual keyboard. However, bear in mind that these aren’t as secure as real passwords Which Is More Secure, A Password Or a Pattern Lock? Our smartphones carry a lot of personal information. All of your text messages, emails, notes, apps, app data, music, pictures, and so much more are all on there. While it's a very great convenience to... Read More . It’s often possible to see where you’ve touched a touch screen by the residue your fingers leave behind How to Safely Clean Your Tablet or Mobile Phone Touchscreen Grime and dirt can impact touchscreen performance. Here's how stop that by cleaning your mobile phone or tablet touchscreen. Read More .

Picture passwords don’t replace your current password. They’re an alternative method you can use to log in. You’ll still be able to log in with your current password.

To create a picture password, click or tap the Create a picture password button in the Users section of the PC settings application. (You can also choose to create a PIN from here. The PIN will allow you to unlock a tablet by tapping a few numbers instead of entering a password, but it’s obviously less secure than a proper password that can incorporate more than just numbers.)


You’ll have to enter your current password before creating a picture password. After you do, you’ll be able to choose your own picture.

The picture password will incorporate a number of circles, straight lines, and taps at locations you choose on the picture. Windows remembers the size, position, and direction of the gestures. For example, a simple picture password could be a family photo where you tap people’s faces in a certain order. However, that would be rather obvious. Try to create a less obvious one incorporating other elements, such as circles or lines.

change windows 8 password

For more information about Windows 8, download our free guide to Windows 8 The Windows 8 Guide This Windows 8 guide outlines everything new about Windows 8, from the tablet-like start screen to the new "app" concept to the familiar desktop mode. Read More .

Do you have any other password-related tips for Windows 8? Leave a comment and share them!

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  1. Christina Richardson
    June 8, 2013 at 3:28 am

    If one day I really forget my Windows 8 password I think I only choose two ways to reset. One is Microsoft Account. The other is Anmosoft Windows Password Reset ( The first one I think is maybe safe and free. The second is reset software which I used before in my Windows 7 system. I think it is quick and safe, and most OS it can help reset.

  2. xigngao
    May 7, 2013 at 6:59 am

    More Windows 8 trick and forgotten windows 8 password reset on this blog:

  3. unknown69
    February 19, 2013 at 8:08 pm

    Why even have password? Its stupid, unless you have a dumb bro who can't keep out of your PC

    • Chris Hoffman
      February 28, 2013 at 6:11 pm

      Well, what if you have a laptop? Or roommates? Or coworkers? Or... a million other situations.

  4. Victor Ong
    February 19, 2013 at 7:22 pm

    Nice post! Now I think I'll switch to a microsoft account and just bypass login! Thanks :)

  5. Richard Steven Hack
    February 19, 2013 at 6:55 pm

    I hate this.

    "/How To Change, Reset, And Picturize Your Windows 8 Password_files/fql could not be saved, because the source file could not be read."

  6. dragonmouth
    February 19, 2013 at 3:24 pm

    Linux has had the Auto-Login feature for years, so Microsoft just re-invented the wheel. However, the Linux screen used to set Auto-Login advises in no uncertain terms against the use of the Auto-Login feature because of security concerns. Has Microsoft improved the security of Win 8 to the point where Auto-Login is at least as safe as the one in Linux?

    • Chris Hoffman
      February 28, 2013 at 6:10 pm

      Well, Windows has had auto-logon for years, too. It's not the most secure feature, whether you're using Linux or Windows.

  7. Scott Macmillan
    February 19, 2013 at 11:47 am

    I have a strong password as I think most of us do.I think I will stay with a pin for now.I want to see how quickly someone is able to develop a program to hack into picture passwords..

  8. Nevzat Akkaya
    February 19, 2013 at 8:25 am

    I'm using PIN to quickly enter to my Windows 8 desktop. My password is a very strong one and it's not convenient to use on logon's. Fortunately Windows 8 has easy security options and alternatives.