Whenever you want to create or delete a user account, the most common way of doing it is by using the User Accounts panel in the Windows Control Panel. If you’ve ever used this process to create a new user account, then you will probably know that this option doesn’t give much control over how you create users, like user description, password settings, etc. Unknown to many, Windows has a deeply buried computer management setting which can be used to extend the control over user creation and management process. Here is how you can effectively create and manage user accounts in Windows.
Creating User Account
Creating user accounts using the computer management tool is easy. To start, open the control panel by pressing “Win + X” and then select the option “Control Panel” from the list of options. If you are using Windows 7, then you can search for the control panel in that start menu.
Once you are in the Control Panel, find and click on the “Administrative Tools” option. This will open the Administrative Tools window, which is a collection of all the Windows admin tools.
Here in this Administrative Tools Window, select the option “Computer Management.”
After opening the Computer Management window, navigate to “System Tools -> Local Users and Groups” and then to “Users.” As you can see in the right pane, here is where all your user accounts are listed, including the Administrator account.
To create a new user account, right click on the right pane and select the option “New User.” This action will open the “New User” window.
Here enter the new user name, full name of the user, description and a strong password. While creating the user account, you have two options, to let the new user change the password after first login or just restrict the user from ever changing the password.
If you want to force the user to change the password after the first login, then select the option “User must change the password at next login.” If you want to restrict the user from ever changing the password, then deselect the previous option and select the new option “User cannot change password.” Once you are done with the changes, click on the “Create” button to create the new user account.
That’s all there is to do, and with this the new user account is created and listed in the Users list.
Managing User Accounts
In the same window, you can manage the newly created or all the existing user accounts, including the administrator account. To do that, right click on any user account and select the option “Properties” from the context menu.
The above action will open the User Properties window. In the general tab, you can modify the name, description, and the password settings. Besides that, you can also disable the user account by selecting the checkbox “Account is disabled.” This is the best option to block a user from logging in. You can also use this option as an alternative way for deleting the user account as it preserves all the data until the account is deleted.
If you want to change the user group membership, then navigate to the “Member of” tab. Here you can see the current group which the user is a member of. If you want to change that, simply click on the “Add” button and add the new user group.
If you want to make custom changes to the User Profile or the User’s Home Folder paths, you can do so by navigating to the “Profile” tab. Even though changing the paths is very easy, only do this modification if you know what you are doing, as any wrong configuration may hurt the user experience or the user data.
If you ever want to delete a user account, simply right click on the username and select the “Delete ” option.
The above action may display a warning message letting you know that all the user data will be deleted. Simply press the “Yes” button to continue. However, it is always recommended that you disable the account rather than completely deleting unless it is required.
That’s all there is to do and it is that simple to create user accounts using the Computer Management tool. Even though this approach is intended for advanced users and server administrators, it is always a good thing to know an alternative route.
Hopefully that helps, and do comment below sharing your thoughts and experiences about using the above method to create and manage user accounts in Windows.