How to bypass the Windows 8 password screen

Tired of entering your password every time you boot your PC? Here's how to turn that option off.

At the risk of sounding like a cranky old man who doesn't like change, I'm feeling a bit cranky about Windows 8 and some of the changes it imposes. (Get off my lawn, Microsoft!)

For example, every time I boot my PC, I have to enter my Microsoft account password. Hey, I'm all about security, but this machine never leaves my desk, so I'm really not worried about unauthorized access. The password check is one step I could do without.

Fortunately, there's a way to bypass it. Here's how:

1. Boot your PC and enter your password.

2. Press Win-X (by which I mean hold down the Windows key and then tap X).

3. In the pop-up menu that appears, click Command Prompt (Admin).

4. In the command prompt, type control userpasswords2, then press Enter. (If this sounds familiar, it's because the same command works in earlier versions of Windows.)

5. In the User Accounts dialog that appears, uncheck the box marked Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer.

6. Click OK, then confirm the automatic sign-in option by entering your password (twice).

7. Reboot.

Presto! No more password check. And while we're on the subject of making Windows 8 easier to live with, check out "Take a free online course in Windows 8 basics," "Five important Windows 8 keyboard shortcuts," and "How to add Windows Media Center to Windows 8 free of charge."

Have you found any other tricks for taming the Windows 8 beast? Tell me about them in the comments!

Contributing Editor Rick Broida writes about business and consumer technology. Ask for help with your PC hassles at, or try the treasure trove of helpful folks in the PC World Community Forums. Sign up to have the Hassle-Free PC newsletter e-mailed to you each week.

Join the CSO newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.

Tags Windows 8MicrosoftsecuritypasswordsWindowssoftwareoperating systems

More about Microsoft

Show Comments

Featured Whitepapers

Editor's Recommendations

Solution Centres

Stories by Rick Broida

Latest Videos

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Will your data protection strategy be enough when disaster strikes?

    Speakers: - Paul O’Connor, Engagement leader - Performance Audit Group, Victorian Auditor-General’s Office (VAGO) - Nigel Phair, Managing Director, Centre for Internet Safety - Joshua Stenhouse, Technical Evangelist, Zerto - Anthony Caruana, CSO MC & Moderator

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: The Human Factor - Your people are your biggest security weakness

    ​Speakers: David Lacey, Researcher and former CISO Royal Mail David Turner - Global Risk Management Expert Mark Guntrip - Group Manager, Email Protection, Proofpoint

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Current ransomware defences are failing – but machine learning can drive a more proactive solution

    Speakers • Ty Miller, Director, Threat Intelligence • Mark Gregory, Leader, Network Engineering Research Group, RMIT • Jeff Lanza, Retired FBI Agent (USA) • Andy Solterbeck, VP Asia Pacific, Cylance • David Braue, CSO MC/Moderator What to expect: ​Hear from industry experts on the local and global ransomware threat landscape. Explore a new approach to dealing with ransomware using machine-learning techniques and by thinking about the problem in a fundamentally different way. Apply techniques for gathering insight into ransomware behaviour and find out what elements must go into a truly effective ransomware defence. Get a first-hand look at how ransomware actually works in practice, and how machine-learning techniques can pick up on its activities long before your employees do.

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: Get real about metadata to avoid a false sense of security

    Speakers: • Anthony Caruana – CSO MC and moderator • Ian Farquhar, Worldwide Virtual Security Team Lead, Gigamon • John Lindsay, Former CTO, iiNet • Skeeve Stevens, Futurist, Future Sumo • David Vaile - Vice chair of APF, Co-Convenor of the Cyberspace Law And Policy Community, UNSW Law Faculty This webinar covers: - A 101 on metadata - what it is and how to use it - Insight into a typical attack, what happens and what we would find when looking into the metadata - How to collect metadata, use this to detect attacks and get greater insight into how you can use this to protect your organisation - Learn how much raw data and metadata to retain and how long for - Get a reality check on how you're using your metadata and if this is enough to secure your organisation

    Play Video

  • 150x50

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them

    CSO Webinar: How banking trojans work and how you can stop them Featuring: • John Baird, Director of Global Technology Production, Deutsche Bank • Samantha Macleod, GM Cyber Security, ME Bank • Sherrod DeGrippo, Director of Emerging Threats, Proofpoint (USA)

    Play Video

More videos

Blog Posts

Market Place