Using a Standard/Limited User Account

Using a Standard/Limited User Account, often referred to as a Local Account, makes it more difficult for your computer to be infected. A user with a standard account can access most of installed software but not all programs. Standard account users need to type the admin account password in order to access some programs as well data stored under administrator account. You should use a Standard User Account for everyday activities even if you are the sole user of the computer.  It becomes even more important to have separate Standard User Accounts when children are old enough to use the computer.

IMPORTANT: Please note that in order to change the type of an administrator account to standard user or vice versa, you need to sign-in to the admin account.  It is not possible to change the type of a standard account by signing-in to the standard account.

Windows 11 and Windows 10

To create a new Local Account in Windows 10 or 11 using Windows Settings, follow these steps:

1.    Select Start Settings > Accounts and then select Family & other users. (In some versions of Windows you'll see Other users.)

2.    Next to Add other user, select Add account

3.    Select I don't have this person's sign-in information, and on the next page, select Add a user without a Microsoft account.

4.    Enter a user name, password, or password hint—or choose security questions—and then select Next.

Windows 8

Windows 8 options for a local account or a Microsoft Account.
  1. With a mouse, the easiest way is to go to the Windows 8 Start Screen and type Add User. From the search results, click Settings. (With a touch screen, swipe in from the right edge of the screen, tap Settings.)
  2. Tap or click Change PC Settings.
  3. Tap or click Users.
  4. Tap or click Add a user.
  5. To create a Local Account:
    1. Tap or click Sign in without a Microsoft account.
    2. Enter a user name for the new account.To include a password, enter and verify the password, add a password hint.

Windows 7 and Windows Vista

  1. Click the Start button
  2. Click Control Panel
  3. Under User Accounts and Family Safety, click Add or remove user accounts
  4. Click Create a new account
  5. Create a name for the new account
  6. Select Standard user
  7. Click Create Account button

Windows XP

  1. Click Start > Control Panel > User Accounts
  2. Click Create a new account
  3. Create a name for the new account
  4. Under "Pick an account type", select Limited
  5. Click Create Account

Remember - "A day without laughter is a day wasted."
May the wind sing to you and the sun rise in your heart...


Exploring Almost Forgotten Gravesites in the Great State of Ohio said...

This standard user account is not working well for me at all and I am afraid to be in it quite frankly. Nothing was mentioned here how limited things would be while in (I use Windows XP). There is just so much I cannot access and I can't tell where I am at with so much that it just isn't worth it to me. I feel like I am sitting at a totally strange computer! I'm sorry, but I am not comfortable with doing this on my own. I was logged out of my email and don't see my security seal if I try to go back in it. I am not able to see my documents or pictures on my computer. This isn't helping me at all.

Corrine said...

Hi, Linda Jean.

Since your computer is over five years old and you have recently created the limited user account, the programs and files were installed on your Administrator account. Considering the age of your computer, perhaps the easiest thing for you is to use the limited user account when you are surfing the web. For other activities, switch to the Administrator account with the Fast User Switching Feature in Windows XP.

Exploring Almost Forgotten Gravesites in the Great State of Ohio said...

Hi Corrine. My computer won't actually be five years old until next month. Yes, I created the limited user account today, but after leaving my comment, I deleted it. I see I also have a guest account, and I've never used it. Why was it that I did not even see Internet Explorer up on the desktop? I normally use Firefox though, but have kept IE8 as my default browser. I had a lot of trouble IE8, especially when typing up emails, I would type a few letters and have to wait for them to appear, so I stopped using it, but kept it as a default browser because of the Microsoft updates. I cannot send out emails with document of picture attachments when in that limited user account either. I'll take a look at your fast user switching feature. Thank you, and thank you for trying to help me!

Glenn McGrew II said...

Windows 11 Home doesn't have "Add Account" and when I choose add someone, it requires a Microsoft logon, or it can set up a child's account. This is not viable as it's for my own use to isolate my admin account from malware.

Corrine said...

Hi, Glenn. It isn't easy, but it is possible. See the information at Microsoft Learn: