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In Windows 8, in the scenario where there is a single user that has a Microsoft Account (i.e., they have created their account via a Microsoft email address) how does one disable the password prompt when unlocking the screen?

The Windows 7 analogy would be to disable the screensaver password prompt.

I can do this on a "local" account (one not backed by Microsoft) but the setting seems to have no effect on connected accounts.

To replicate:

  1. create an account using or
  2. Lock the screen with WinKey+L
  3. Attempt to unlock, by clicking the mouse, without entering a password.
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Have you tried the instructions in this answer? – tvStatic Oct 29 '12 at 0:48
Dang I was trying to look for this but it seems that you've posted the answer anyways. – Matthew Wong Oct 29 '12 at 0:52
@tvStatic I have indeed, that will allow autmotic login at boot but not during an unlock. – Huckle Oct 29 '12 at 0:54
Further, I would not like to disable the entire screen (as in answer #1 from second link), just the requirement for the password to log back in. I cannot currently test if that is what Answer #2 does from that link but I believe that procedure only works for local accounts and not connected accounts. – Huckle Oct 29 '12 at 0:56
@Huckle: Alternatively you could set a PIN (4 digit code) for bypassing password login. – Manuel Faux Nov 15 '12 at 19:23

To turn on automatic sign in for a local user account or Microsoft account:

  1. press Win+R to open the Run dialog box, then type in netplwiz and press Enter

  2. select the user name of the local user account or Microsoft account that you want to have Windows 8 log on to automatically at startup

  3. uncheck the "Users must enter a username and password to use this computer" box, and click/tap on OK

  4. enter the password of the selected local user account or Microsoft account twice, and click/tap on OK

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Other than adding detail, how is this answer different than the other posted answer; which I already indicated doesn't work. – Huckle Nov 7 '12 at 17:25
@Huckle - These directions worked on my Windows 8 machine. – Ramhound Nov 15 '12 at 18:34
@Ramhound: By "worked", you mean that the password IS required to log in, but not to dismiss the screen saver? Because that is what this question requires. – Ben Voigt Nov 15 '12 at 22:36

If you have a Microsoft account, utilize netplwiz in run, and disable the password, upon reboot your system then gives two options for signing in; a local account and the Microsoft account. The local account will not require a password, but the Microsoft account does require a password.

To answer your question about disabling the password on a machine that is already running and you leave it unattended for some time, follow the directions in this article, which does work.

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Disable the password using Run → netplwiz

This will disable the password prompt. Even with a Microsoft account.

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Goto Run (Win + R) Open netplwiz You will get an option to disable the password prompt

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As I mentioned in the comments on the question I have tried this and it works fine for local accounts but not for ones backed by Windows Live IDs. – Huckle Oct 29 '12 at 16:53
@Aditya - This answer really needs some additional details. – Ramhound Nov 15 '12 at 18:35

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