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After installing Windows 11 22H2, the wizard forces me to connect to the Internet and use a Microsoft Online Account. Is it possible to bypass it and use a local account?

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  • A German IT magazine claims that entering "Microsoft" with any password when asked for the Microsoft account will allow you to bypass that prompt and create a local user instead. (I did not try this myself, which is why I write this as a comment instead of an answer.)
    – Heinzi
    Sep 30 at 6:05
  • Can't you just click "Sign-in options" > "Local account / Domain join instead" (the latter probably only on Pro) on the account creation page anymore?
    – Syroot
    Sep 30 at 14:03
  • @Ray Local account option is also available only in the Pro edition
    – gronostaj
    Oct 2 at 8:47
  • @gronostaj Thanks for confirming, I guess that's why I never saw it missing.
    – Syroot
    Oct 2 at 12:49

4 Answers 4

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Yes you can

When you reach the “Let’s Connect You To A Network” page, hit “Shift” and “F10” on the keyboard at the same time.

This will bring up the Command Prompt

In this new cmd window, type in “taskmgr” and press “Enter” on the keyboard. This will bring up the Task Manager window so you can see all running processes. Expand the Task Manager by clicking the “More Details” button, and then find

“Network Connection Flow.”

Select this process and then hit the “End Task” button.

Now you can close the cmd and taskmgr windows and return to the Windows 11 setup, where you will enter a name for a local account.

***I found a slightly faster way, once cmd prompt is open type in

OOBE\BYPASSNRO

hit enter and close cmd window, now you can enter a local user account name

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  • 33
    This is horrifying.
    – MechMK1
    Sep 30 at 7:44
  • 3
    @MechMK1 I, on the other hand, am genuinely impressed by how Microsoft made this gracefully work against them
    – gronostaj
    Sep 30 at 9:47
  • I read (although I haven't verified it) that Microsoft recently disabled the Shift-F10 binding during the Win 11 install process. I recently went with the option posted by @HaozheXie here.
    – bitsmack
    Sep 30 at 17:43
  • 2
    @bitsmack still working for me, this has been working since windows XP
    – Moab
    Sep 30 at 18:24
  • This is just simply disgusting... The first method of ending "Network Connection Flow" doesn't work for me and using oobe\bypassnro works. I'm installing a Windows 11 Professional Edition (22H2, updated Oct 2022).
    – imgg
    Oct 24 at 18:17
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  • Use the email address no@thankyou.com.
  • Type any password (e.g. 123456).
  • The wizard says "Oops, something went wrong".
  • Click Next to open a screen that allows you to create a local account.

enter image description here

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  • 14
    thankyou.com is a registered domain. Using an email address of a domain you don't know, to even try to register windows is an exceptionally BAD idea from a security point of view !
    – 1NN
    Sep 29 at 15:42
  • 13
    Better to use example.com as that is guaranteed to be an example domain which will not process mail and which will error on HTTP requests.
    – fooquency
    Sep 29 at 20:18
  • @fooquency Still not guarenteed; it's a well-known fact that the domain indeed is reserved for special use but there's nothing (rules don't count; they can be broken) stopping whoever has access to it from setting up their own tenant.
    – aytimothy
    Sep 30 at 5:46
  • 18
    @aytimothy The example domains are operated by ICANN. It is exceptionally unlikely they will abuse them. Far less likely than any other existing domain, anyways.
    – Polygnome
    Sep 30 at 10:07
  • 5
    If ICANN is abusing domains, all bets are off anyway because they own . the domain all other domains are subdomains of. Oct 1 at 11:20
3

Below is not for updating from Windows 10/11, but for installing 22H2 from scratch, or performing clean install.

First, download the Windows 11 22H2's iso and rufus that make a USB memory a bootable Windows installer. That sounds as same as just making it by yourself, but there's reason I recommend using rufus - It allows you to bypass the requirements of network and Microsoft account by just clicking one box.

When you start rufus, it shows the UI of the software. Pick your USB memory, and once you've selected your USB memory, then hit SELECT to select Windows 11's iso.

Once it's done, rufus automatically assumes you've selected Windows' iso. Hit START, and after that a box will show up.enter image description here

Tick the box that says Remove requirement for an online Microsoft account, and then hit OK (Disable data collection is optional, if you don't like the data collection then tick it).

That's it. When rufus completed flashing iso to the USB memory, restart your PC, boot from USB memory, start installing Windows normally. It will ask you to connect internet, but ignore it, and voila it won't ask you to login to Microsoft account.

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  • Note that this option will only work if you have Internet disconnected. But you can get a local account while connected to the Internet if you select the Set a local account using the same name as this user's option. And don't worry if you're bothered that Rufus doesn't ask you to choose the name you want to use for your user: you can very easily change that name after Windows is installed, with absolutely no ill effects (i.e. changing the user name post-install will leave Windows exactly the same as if you had set the user name you wanted pre or during install).
    – Akeo
    Oct 13 at 10:45
  • @Akeo I believe that would make user folder's name (C:\User\UserName) to the "same name". Someone might don't like it (Yes, that's me; I'd like them to be as same as newly desired username). So yeah, while that works very well if you don't plan to change the username, but if you're planning to change your username and don't want to have user folder to have different name than your desired name, then you shouldn't tick that box.
    – Skye-AT
    Oct 13 at 13:08
  • Again, changing the username post install is very easy to accomplish (Control Panel -> User Accounts -> Change your account name) and will leave you in the exact same situation as if you had changed it pre or during the install, so there's very little reason to have an option to set a specific account name pre-install. If you want to have user folder to have different name than your desired name then you most certainly can tick that box, and change the user name once Windows is installed in the manner I described. It will be indistinguishable from setting the user at install.
    – Akeo
    Oct 13 at 19:44
  • Oh god. I didn't notice you're the creator of Rufus. I didn't even think that creator of Rufus is around here, lol. Anyway, I know that you can change your user name easily. I just don't like my user folder to have different name than my current user name. If my user name is Skye-AT, then the user folder should be named as Skye-AT. Yes I know that the folder name is also changeable, but I've had an experience that some application misbehaved after I've changed folder name. So that's why I'm not doing it. Again, if you don't care this kind of things, then you are free to tick the box.
    – Skye-AT
    Oct 14 at 5:51
  • Ah, I stand corrected. I should have read more closely what you were saying, because my understanding was that renaming the local account would change the folder name in the Users directory, but Microsoft does not do that by design. So your point is 100% valid, and I'm going to actually have to propose an option to enter the username in Rufus, because what I thought was a good approach is actually flawed... Apologies for missing your point, which is correct.
    – Akeo
    Oct 14 at 8:13
0

One option is to proceed and log in with a Microsoft account or create a new one.

Once you're in Windows then you can create a local admin account, log in to the local account, and delete the Microsoft account.

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  • 2
    That's not a good solution. Your Windows' key will be linked to that account. Oct 2 at 6:08
  • @IsmaelMiguel Can you provide a source for your claim? As far as I know: "Every Windows 10 license is bound to the computer motherboard.". I assume this is true for Windows 11 as well.
    – MonkeyZeus
    Oct 3 at 14:11
  • 1
    "It is essential that you link your Microsoft account to the Windows 11 license on your device. Linking your Microsoft account with your digital license enables you to reactivate Windows using the Activation troubleshooter whenever you make a significant hardware change." [...] "After your Microsoft account has been added, on the Activation page you’ll see Windows is activated with a digital license linked to your Microsoft account." | support.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/… Oct 3 at 14:27

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