Changing user account types in Windows 8.0 and 8.1 should be easy — if you understand how they work. Here’s what you need to know.
Plus: How to protect your files from CryptoLocker, what to do when Windows 7 tools disagree on whether SP1 is installed or not, and ways around a System File Checker failure.
Why can’t I change my Windows 8 account types?
Reader Jim March ran into trouble when trying to change his Win8 user accounts from administrator to standard — and back.
- “I just finished reading Susan Bradley’s [Nov. 7] Top Story on how to get Win8.1 installed with a local account. It was great!
“Having just struggled with most of the issues she raised, I noted one more issue not mentioned. It appears that Win8.1’s Control Panel no longer lets you set a user to either administrator or standard privileges.
In fact, if one uses a Microsoft account for the Win8.1 installation and then creates a local account, the first account is automatically set to administrator and the second account is set as standard. I could find no method to change their status.”
There are several ways to change account types in both Win8.0 and 8.1 — but there also are a few gotchas.
For example, Win8x tries to ensure there’s always at least one admin account available. This makes perfect sense — someone has to be in charge! So if there’s only one admin-level account on your PC, Win8x normally won’t let you downgrade that account to Standard until you’ve created another, separate, administrator-level account.