Can’t sign in to your device on Windows? Here’s how to fix it

By: Elsie Otachi
4 minute read
fix Can’t sign in to your device

One of the main reasons why you cannot sign in to your device is forgetting your password.

However, if you are very sure you didn’t change your password, or you typed in the correct one, but you get the ‘Cannot sign into your device right now’ message on your computer, then the issue is more than just your password.

Before you get to the solutions, check on the following:

  • Whether you’re on a Microsoft account, or local account
  • If you’ve successfully tried logging into a different device with your Microsoft account
  • If you’ve reset your password

This article covers a few solutions you can use to fix the sign in problem on your Windows 10 device.

Cannot sign into your device right now [FIX]

Solution 1: Check for the Sign in option

If you can see the sign in option on your login screen, it is displayed whenever you set up a PIN password for an account.

When you click on the sign in option, you can either choose PIN password, or your actual Microsoft account password in order to login.

Confirm that you’re typing in the correct password before resorting to other solutions.

Do the following:

  • In the password field, click on the eye icon to view your password and ensure it’s the correct one
  • Click Enter
  • Verify the keyboard layout is the same. Sometimes during an upgrade, this may change, causing you to key in different characters when typing your password
  • Press the Windows Key and spacebar simultaneously to verify your keyboard language and layout
  • Hold the Windows Key down
  • Press the spacebar repeatedly to change keyboard layout
  • Go to another device and check whether you can sign in to http://account.live.com with the same Microsoft account email, and the same password

If the issue doesn’t go away, then go to the next solution.


Solution 2: Reset the password when you can’t sign in

In order to reset your password, use the exact same email address to recover the password you set up at the time you created your Microsoft account.

Usually there’s an alternative email you give for password recovery when setting up an email account the first time.

Follow these steps to reset your password:

  • Go to the Reset your password page
  • Choose one of the options why you need a password reset > hit Next
  • Enter the email address you set up your Microsoft account with
  • Enter the captcha characters or other seen on the screen > hit Next
  • If you had security information for your email account, a one-time code will be sent to your phone number (or alternate) or alternate email you gave when you set up the email
  • Enter the code
  • Create the new password

You can also use the ‘I know my password but can’t sign in’ option when trying to rest your password.

If password reset doesn’t work, check whether the following applies to your experience:

  1. Can’t get a security code

If you cannot get a security code, click I didn’t get a code when prompted for one on sign in, or click I don’t have access to these when resetting your password, then do the following:

  • Fill out a security questionnaire
  • When asked about some emails you recently sent, your birthdate, credit card details or other details known to you alone, you don’t have to know all the answers, just answer what you know or something close to the answer.

Note: a 30 day waiting period takes effect before you get full access to your account.

  1. Profile blocked temporarily

In case you get such a message, check on the Account temporarily suspended troubleshooting page on Microsoft Support to know more about the problem.

  1. Two-step verification turned on

Sometimes you may take extra security steps to protect your account from being blocked or hacked into. This includes two-step verification.

If you recently turned on this security feature, some apps and devices will reject your sign in because they are not synced or updated to prompt you for a security code. In this case, you need a password to sign in successfully.

  1. Using a new device or traveling

Like all other email platforms, Microsoft also protects your account from any unusual sign in activity in case of hackers or someone trying to access your account.

If you’re traveling, or using a new device, you may be required to confirm your identity.

  1. Sign in using a local account (not Microsoft account)

Microsoft accounts work across all your devices, apps, and services, and this is what makes it different from local accounts because the latter only work on devices where you created them. This is why Microsoft helps you recover forgotten passwords, but it cannot help with local accounts.

  1. Password reset page doesn’t recognize your Microsoft account

If you forgot your email address, or the phone number you gave while registering for your Microsoft account, the reset page may not recognize your account.


Solution 3: Check with Microsoft Support for more sign in answers to your specific issue

As a final resort, you can contact Microsoft Support to find out more specifics about how to resolve the issue.

Let us know in the comments section whether these steps and solutions worked for you.

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