Windows 8 asks for my Live login details when I login - I'd prefer to use a local password separate from my Live password. Is it possible to use a local password?
What do I lose out on if I don't use a Live account password?
You lose out by not being able to Download apps or the updated content of the apps, or sync between PCs like favorites and history
Drag your mouse to the right hand of the screen so the menu pops up
Click Change PC Settings
Under the Users Menu select Switch To A Local Account on the right hand side.
This will prompt you to create a new local user
Logging in with your Live account allows Windows to save a lot of your settings and some of your documents in "the cloud". If you were to login to another Windows 8 machine some of your preferences and settings will follow you. For instance, if you reformatted, put a new installation of Windows 8 on your computer, your preferences should take affect with the Live account.
Using a Microsoft account offers the following advantages:
If it annoys you that you have to introduce along password every time, you can set a PIN or a Picture Password to make the log in procedure faster. More information about all the available sign in options can be found here: Introducing Windows 8: How to Switch Between Sign-In Options.
If you still want to go ahead and switch to a local account, from a Microsoft account, you can find a full step by step procedure here: How to Switch to a Local Account from a Microsoft Account in Windows 8
You can create a 4-digit pin for quick log in.
Drag your mouse to the right hand of the screen so the menu pops up, Click Settings
Click Change PC Settings at the bottom
Click Users. You will see a "Create a PIN" button on the right
You won't lose out anything with the benefits of using a Live account because essentially it just creates a 4-digit pin for easy access.