You sit down, holding a bag of chips and a chilled drink, all set to watch a movie on your laptop. But as soon as you enter your password, it turns out to be wrong. What do you do now?
Windows 10 users have multiple options for authentication which range from traditional passwords to a pin or a biometric authentication alternative commonly known as Windows Hello. This feature allows you to sign in using finger print or face recognition.
However, traditional passwords are used by majority.
The Windows 10 system supports two account types: Microsoft accounts and Local accounts.
Local accounts are similar to those on the previous versions of Windows and data on these accounts is stored locally. Additionally, such accounts are only known to the local devices and can be used on only those devices that they are created on. In comparison to them, Microsoft accounts are online accounts that use your email address as the username. They can work on any device irrespective of which device they were created on. You can also use these accounts for availing Microsoft’s internet services such as One Drive.
So if you have forgotten the password of your Microsoft account or it has been hacked, do not panic as you can easily retrieve it by following these easy steps mentioned below. Scroll down to read how you can get out of this problem.
Resetting a Microsoft Account password
Microsoft puts Microsoft Accounts front and center on Windows 10 by making it the default option during setup. It is likely that the majority of users are signing in using Microsoft Accounts and not local accounts because of that.
Step 1: Open the Password Reset page on the Internet
Since you are using a Microsoft Account, you may reset it on the Internet. That is handy if you are locked out of your PC but have a smartphone or other device with Internet access as you can use those for that.
The “why can’t you sign in” page lists three options:
- I forgot my password.
- I know my password, but can’t sign in.
- I think someone else is using my Microsoft Account.
Select “I forgot my password” and click on next to continue.
Step 2: Enter Microsoft Account email address
Enter the email address or phone number associated with the Microsoft account on the page that opens.
You are also asked to solve a captcha on the page. If you find it hard to solve, try the audio button and listen to it instead.
Click next once you have entered your information on the screen.
Step 3: Verify your identity
You need to verify your identity on the next page. Microsoft lists options on the page that depend on information you provided the company with earlier.
You will see listed the primary email address associated with the account, but may also get options to use text, secondary email addresses or an application.
If you select email or text, Microsoft generates and sends a code to the email or phone number which is used to verify ownership of the account.
Step 4: Enter Code
The code is a seven digit number that you need to enter on the next page. For that to work, you need access to your mobile phone or email account.
Step 5: Two-factor authentication
If you have enabled two-factor authentication — you should — you are asked to repeat the same step again, but with another verification option.
You are asked to enter the second code on the next page to complete the process.
Step 6: Reset your password
If verification was successful, you may select a new account password for your Microsoft account on the next page.
The password needs to be at least eight characters and cannot be the same password that you used previously.