How to Create a Password in Windows

Create a password in Windows 10, 8, 7, Vista, and XP

Does Windows ask you for a password when your computer starts? It should. If a password isn't required to access your account, you're leaving completely open to anyone else at your home or workplace things like your email account, saved files, etc.

Create a Password in the Control Panel

Assuming you haven't configured Windows to automatically log in, chances are you simply don't have a password set for your Windows account. You need to correct this by creating a password right now.

You can make one from Control Panel. Once you have, you must use it to log on to Windows from that point forward. That is, unless you at some point remove your Windows password.

The specific steps you need to follow to create a Windows logon password differ somewhat depending on the operating system you're using. See What Version of Windows Do I Have? if you're not sure which of those several versions of Windows is installed on your computer.

It's always a good idea to create a password reset disk after creating a new password. If your password is really complex and you don't want to make a reset disk, consider storing it in a password manager.

How to Create a Windows 10 or Windows 8 Password

  1. Open Control Panel. The easiest way to do that in Windows 10 is by executing control from the Start menu or Run dialog box. In Windows 8, use the Power User Menu by pressing Win+X.

    Control Panel in Start Menu
  2. Select User Accounts (Windows 10) or User Accounts and Family Safety (Windows 8).

    User Accounts in Control Panel

    If you're viewing the applets by their icons instead of in category view on Windows 10, proceed to Step 4 after choosing User Accounts. If you're on Windows 8 in this view, you won't even see this option; open User Accounts instead and then skip down to Step 4.

  3. Open User Accounts.

    User Accounts in User Accounts applet
  4. Choose Make changes to my account in PC settings.

    Make changes to my account in PC settings
  5. Select Sign-in options from the left.

    Sign-in options in Settings
  6. Under the Password area, choose Add.

    Add button in Sign-in options
  7. Enter the new password in the first two text fields. You have to do it twice to make sure you type the password correctly.

  8. In the Password hint field, enter something that will help you remember the password should you forget it, and then select Next.

    Password hint field and Next button in Create a password
  9. Hit Finish to complete the new password setup.

    Finish button in Create a password
  10. You can now exit out of any windows you opened to make the password, like Settings or PC settings.

How to Create a Windows 7 or Windows Vista Password

  1. Open Control Panel from the Start menu.

  2. Select User Accounts and Family Safety (Windows 7) or User Accounts (Windows Vista).

    If you don't see this link while creating or resetting your password in Windows 7, it's because you're using Control Panel in a view that just shows icons or links to the applets, and this one isn't included. Open User Accounts instead, and then go on to Step 4.

  3. Choose User Accounts.

    Windows 7 User Accounts and Family Safety screen in Control Panel
  4. In the Make changes to your user account area, select Create a password for your account.

    Windows 7 User Accounts screen in Control Panel
  5. Type the password you want to use in the first two text boxes.

    Create a password for your account screen in Windows 7
  6. Enter something useful in the Type a password hint text box. This step is optional but we highly recommend that you use it. If you try logging in to Windows but enter the wrong password, this hint will pop up, hopefully jogging your memory.

  7. Choose Create password to confirm your new password.

  8. You can now close out of any open windows you used to reach the page for changing the password.

How to Create a Windows XP Password

  1. Navigate to Start > Control Panel.

  2. Choose User Accounts.

    If you're in the Category View of Control Panel, you'll need to select it again on the next screen.

    Windows XP Control Panel
  3. Select your username in the or pick an account to change area.

    Windows XP User Accounts area of Control Panel
  4. Choose the Create a password link.

  5. In the first two text boxes, enter the password you would like to start using.

    Create a password screen in Windows XP
  6. Choose Create Password to confirm your new password.

  7. The next screen might ask Do you want to make your files and folders private?. If other user accounts will be set up on this PC and you'd like to keep your personal files private, select Yes, Make Private.

    If you're not concerned about this kind of security or this account is the only account on your PC, you can choose No.

  8. You can now close the User Accounts window and the Control Panel window.

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