Best account choices for a personal Windows 8 system?

Discussion in 'Windows 64bit' started by Robert Carnegie, Jun 16, 2013.

  1. May I ask here (and, if not, where else*) for advice on
    appropriate choices of accounts to set up on a new
    Windows 8, Pro, 64 bits, tablet system?

    *I'm using Google Groups, which isn't very flexible.

    The PC will be mostly for my own use, including
    web browsing, watching video and playing audio,
    speech recognition control, and maybe some
    programming, for instance in Java. I expect to
    use mostly "desktop" programs, but I may also
    want to buy "Windows Store" apps, install
    Windows 8.1 when released, and, of course,
    use "Windows Update".

    The standard advice seems to be to have one
    "administrator" account which is a
    "Microsoft account" - for everything.

    Alternative options include local accounts
    (without Microsoft account), standard accounts
    (without administrator and software install
    privileges), and "Family Safety" (restricted

    I haven't found any book or web site that gives
    comprehensive advice on what account to use when.

    And so for instance: can I use Microsoft services
    without using the Microsoft account to log in?
    Can I buy software or media using one PC account
    and then run it in another account - surely,
    or what's the point of other accounts? Or,
    can I use more than one PC account with the same
    Microsoft account?

    And, can accounts share the same speech recognition
    settings (voice profile)?

    Or, I suppose I can have a Microsoft account
    that's a standard account most of the time,
    and promote the account to an administrator
    if and when it's needed?


    Robert Carnegie
    Robert Carnegie, Jun 16, 2013
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  2. Robert Carnegie

    miso Guest

    I don't use cloud services since the NSA reads them. However, it is
    considered bad to do everything from the administrator account.

    I absolutely hate the "virtual store" or whatever win7 calls it. I
    assume win8 has the same scheme. I simply hate to have to find where a
    program stashes the data. I still like to keep the OS on one partition
    and user data on the other, but the MS scheme puts user data on the same
    partition as the OS. And good luck finding data stashes in the nether
    regions when using samba from another machine.
    miso, Jun 17, 2013
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  3. Thanks for answering. I think I agree with you on a lot of this - but on Windows 8 things are different.

    There are indeed "cloud" storage and "cloud" applications,
    and these are indeed probably stained with the greasy
    fingerprints of the NSA, but "Windows Store" is where to
    buy software, apparently, and also where to get Windows 8.1
    later this year. "Modern UI" software is only available
    in this "Windows Store".

    As for the administrator thing - from Windows Vista
    onwards, I think, there's at least been UAC security,
    so that even when you log in as administrator
    (and some computer owners despise passwords anyway),
    you have to click on special permissions boxes to allow
    administrator things to happen - such as installing software.

    I still don't like it - but I do have a "get started
    with Windows 8" book that, for instance, illustrates
    "Family Safety" by showing a machine with two user accounts
    in existence; Mr. John Smith (administrator) and little
    Johnny Junior (standard account with Family Safety
    and probably a curfew). Or equivalent names.

    I agree that Mr. Smith should have considered creating
    a standard account for his own everyday access.
    Perhaps there is a good reason why he didn't.
    Perhaps the computer is exclusively for Johnny Junior's
    use. But that doesn't seem to be the idea in the book.
    Having said that, Mrs. Smith ought to get her turn, too.

    And so I feel that I still don't know what is the best
    thing to do.

    (Although, for now, this computer is to be just for me.)
    Robert Carnegie, Jun 18, 2013
  4. I think it's useful to have one account (MS or local) that is used strictly
    for administrative work, and one for each user on the machine that is a USER
    level only account. When something requires elevation, you'll be prompted
    and you can elevate. But it adds an additional layer of protection that I
    believe in.

    If you have no particular need to be part of a traditional Windows domain,
    then by all means use a "Microsoft" account. (It does NOT have to be an
    actual MS account, by the way. Whatever account you've used for
    Live/Passport over the years is just fine. ) The nice thing is, if you use
    a MS account as opposed to a local one, your software and settings will
    follow you between machines.
    Charlie Russel-MVP, Jun 20, 2013
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