Windows 10 Local Accounts No Longer Easily Accessible During Initial Setup Or First Run As Microsoft Attempts To Migrate Users To The Cloud

Microsoft Windows 10 installation will attempt to suggest creating or setting up an online account before the setup finishes. Several administrators and individuals attempting to install Windows 10 on their computers have reported that the option to create a local account while installing Windows 10 isn’t displayed or easily available.

There are a few simple workarounds to set up or choose a local account during installation of Windows 10, but the absence or ease of access to the option could be an indicator of Microsoft’s intentions. Users claim Microsoft could be gradually urging users to tie-up their Windows 10 machines with an online Microsoft account in the clouds. Granted there are several benefits of associating a Windows 10 installation with a cloud account, but quite a few system admins are concerned about the methods reportedly adopted by Microsoft.

Microsoft Makes It difficult, Not Impossible, To Install Windows 10 With A Local Account:

Windows 10 installation had the option to choose a local account which could be used to log in to the system. Administrators or even individuals who chose to install their own copy of Windows 10 on a PC would be greeted with two options during the first setup. While Microsoft has been actively suggesting new installers of Windows 10 to select the online Microsoft account, it wasn’t difficult to ignore the same.

However lately, the installation process of Windows 10 appears to have become a little different. According to several users, new installations of Windows 10 no longer clearly offer the choice of going with a local account. The initial setup after installation pushes the Microsoft Account option. It appears the company has made it more difficult to create local accounts during the initial setup and even actively discouraging users to do so.

A growing thread on Reddit, suggests that Microsoft has made it more difficult to create local accounts during the first run. Several Windows 10 installers who are choosing to install Windows, claim that no option to create a local user account was presented during the first run of Windows 10. Incidentally, quite a few users noted that they chose the ‘Download Tool’ offered by Microsoft to access the legitimate copy of the latest stable version of Windows 10, and the option to use an offline account was not available on the login screen.

Should Windows 10 Users Choose An Online Cloud-Based Microsoft Account While Installing Windows 10?

It is important to note that there are several advantages to opting for an online account to complete the Windows 10 installation. Microsoft allows using the account on multiple machines, grants access to certain special tools and services that mandatorily require a Microsoft account. Moreover, seldom required but essential services such as password recovery become quite easy to execute. If that’s not enough, Microsoft is also working towards a diskless installation option that could come with a cloud-based backup, repair and recovery solution. This option would invariably require an account with Microsoft simply because the company will store all the necessary data and files on its own cloud servers.

Despite the advantages, several administrators remain loyal to the local account while setting up a Windows 10 machine. They claim local accounts are more private as credentials are locally stored. Moreover, such accounts are not easy to hack simply because attackers would require physical access to the machines. If that’s not enough, local accounts are widely believed to significantly limit the exposure of the Windows 10 machine to Microsoft. This is important to people who insist the company is actively harvesting user data.

Although not a big advantage, the username folder that appears after installing Windows 10, reflects the full chosen username, and not just the first five letters of the email address used to create the Microsoft Account. These advantages might appear to be insignificant, and could soon become redundant, but several users insist that Microsoft must offer the ability to go with a local account while installing Windows 10.

How To Ensure The Option To Choose A Local Account Appears While Installing And Setting Up Windows 10?

Although there are a few methods to ensure that the option to create or choose a local account appears during Windows 10 first run, there’s only one safe and assured technique. Admins who have set up Windows 10 machines advise breaking off all internet connections before starting Windows 10 installations.

The creation of a Microsoft Account requires an active Internet connection. In the absence of a reliable internet connection, Windows 10 will automatically switch to the creation of a local account as it is the only possible option to complete setup at that point in time. Some admins also suggest using a legitimate Microsoft Account during initial setup. However, immediately after the first-run, create a local account, and start using it exclusively. This method should reportedly limit the data exposure, claim some admins.

Alap Naik Desai
A B.Tech Plastics (UDCT) and a Windows enthusiast. Optimizing the OS, exploring software, searching and deploying solutions to strange and weird issues is Alap's main interest.