What to do if Windows 10 won’t let you add a PIN

Milan Stanojevic
by Milan Stanojevic
Deputy Editor
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Windows 10 won’t add PIN

Are you experiencing a similar problem of not being able to add a PIN, as this user reports?

“For the past few days, the login with PIN on Windows 10 Pro is not available anymore on my laptop.  On the sign-in options screen I can only add a PIN but not remove or change it. When try to add a PIN after Password confirmation it asks to confirm my identity with a PIN and then nothing happens anymore.  The setup window closes and no changes are done. If I instead enter a PIN select forget PIN it only open the dialog to go to sign-in option screen to reset my PIN.  Is there any other why to reset the PIN login?”

Well, PIN sign in is a convenient way to log in to your computer through a four digit code that is easy to remember, and use as the primary sign in option on your Windows computer.

However, there are times when Windows 10 won’t let you add a PIN, or it is just not working anymore. Some of these situations include:

  • Inability to add or update your PIN
  • Adding a PIN but not being offered the sign in option at login screen
  • PIN sign in option is offered but the system rejects your PIN
  • PIN sign in is stuck and you need to reboot or use a different login option
  • The PIN was added but after an update, it is broken

If one of these issues applies to your case, you can try the solutions listed below to resolve it.

FIX: Windows won’t let me add a PIN

  1. Set up PIN log in
  2. Disable security software
  3. Alter Permissions
  4. Reset ACLs on NGC folder
  5. Use a local account
  6. Log in using another user account
  7. Clear TPM
  8. Run an SFC
  9. Run DISM tool

1. Set up PIN log in

  • Go to the search box and type CMD then press enter
  • From the search results, go to Command Prompt, right click and select Run as administrator

  • In the Command Prompt (Admin) black screen, type gpedit.msc and press enter
  • Double click on Computer configuration

  • Click Administrative Templates

  • Double click System

  • Double click Logon

  • Double click Turn on convenience PIN sign in

  • Select Enable

— RELATED: Full Fix: Windows 10, 8.1 Build Freezes on Login

2. Disable security software

Sometimes Windows 10 won’t let you add a PIN when your security software such as antivirus or firewall is blocking the powershell.exe after a Windows update. Allow the program/unblock it via your antivirus program setting and see if you can go straight to your account settings and add a PIN.

3. Alter Permissions

  • Click Start and select File Explorer
  • Click View

  • Click Show/Hide and check Hidden Items
  • Go to C:\Windows\ServiceProfiles

  • Double click LocalService

  • Click AppData\Local\Microsoft folder
  • Right click on NGC folder
  • Select Properties
  • Go to Security tab
  • Click Advanced
  • Click Change link against Owner under Advanced Security Settings for NGC window
  • Take ownership of the NGC folder
  • Check replace owner on sub-containers and objects, and replace all child object permission entries with inheritable permission entries from this object
  • Click Change permissions
  • Click Add
  • In the permission entry for NGC, click Select a principal
  • Enter SYSTEM as the object name
  • Click Check Names and click OK
  • Check Full Control under Basic Permissions and click OK

Check if you can add a PIN after following these steps.

— RELATED: Full Fix: Unable to Login with my Microsoft Account in Windows 10

4. Reset ACLs on NGC folder

If Windows 10 won’t let you add a PIN, it could be caused by corrupt Access Control Lists on the NGC folder. In this case, reset the ACLs for the NGC folder to make the PIN work again. To do this:

  • Go to the search box and type CMD then press enter
  • From the search results, go to Command Prompt, right click and select Run as administrator

  • In the Command Prompt (Admin) black screen, type this command: icacls C:\Windows\ServiceProfiles\LocalService\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Ngc /T /Q /C /RESET
  • Press Enter
  • Close Command Prompt. You might need to add a new PIN now and it should work as expected

5. Use a local account

If Windows 10 won’t let you add a PIN after a Windows Update or you forgot it; switch to using your password instead then update the PIN. To do this:

  • On the login screen, click on Sign-in options
  • Try to login to Windows with your Microsoft account or local account Password
  • Click on Windows icon on the bottom-right corner, on the top of Start Menu, click on your account
  • select Change account settings

  • On the left-side panel of Accounts settings, select Sign-in options

  • On this page you have a number of options such as: Require sign-in, Windows Hello, Password and then PIN

  • Directly below “PIN”, you will see two buttons: Change and Remove.  Click on Remove.
  • If asked “Are you sure you want to remove your PIN?” etc, below it you will find two more buttons: Remove and Cancel. Click Remove
  • A Log-in Box will open for you to re-enter your Password. Enter your password then click OK
  • You will be returned to the Sign-in options page where you can now Add a PIN once again.
  • Enter your new PIN and confirm PIN, click on OK to reset your new PIN for your Windows.
  • Restart your PC and Sign-in with your new PIN to confirm.

— RELATED: Login screen Windows 10 slow, stuck, frozen [FIX]

6. Log in using another user account

If there is another account on the system with Administrator privileges, try and sign in to that account, then reset your password from there. To do this:

  • Right click Start
  • Select Run

  • Type control userpasswords2 and press enter
  • Select your account
  • Click Reset Password
  • Enter a new password then click OK. Try logging into the account.

For computers connected to a Domain, contact your Network Administrator. There might be an issue with Kerberos authentication or the version of Windows Server is not compatible. Restart your computer a few times to see if you are able to then log in. There might be a small delay also, so wait a few seconds then try again. Again, use the preview button to make sure you entered the right characters.

7. Clear TPM

  • In the search box, type tpm.msc and press enter
  • Click Clear TPM. It will reboot you to a part of the system’s UEFI/BIOS
  • Press F1 to clear TPM
  • Click Start and select Settings
  • Click Accounts

  • Go to the Add PIN function and select it to see if it works.

— RELATED: Fix: Windows 10 login screen missing

8. Run an SFC scan

  • Go to start and type CMD
  • Right click Command Prompt and select run as Administrator (elevated command prompt)

  • If you want to verify and repair the OS type sfc /scannow (note the space between sfc and “/”). If you just want to check (verify only) the OS type sfc /verifyonly (no changes will be made using verify only)

When you have finished it will say one of three things:

  • Windows did not find any integrity violations (a good thing)
  • Windows Resource Protection found corrupt files and repaired them (a good thing)
  • Windows Resource Protection found corrupt files but was unable to fix some (or all) of them (not a good thing). If you get this message run DISM as described below

9. Run DISM tool

The Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) tool, helps fix Windows corruption errors when Windows Updates and service packs fail to install due to corruption errors, like if you have a damaged system file.

  • Click Start
  • In the search field box, type CMD
  • Click Command Prompt in the search results list
  • Type Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /ScanHealth to scan for missing components
  • Type Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth to check for missing or broken files
  • Type Dism /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth to scan and correct any causes of the Windows 10 desktop is slow to load issue
  • Press Enter

Note: The DISM tool usually takes 15 minutes to complete, however, sometimes it may take longer. Do not cancel when it is running. If the repair is successful you may want to re-run SFC just to check.

Did any of these solutions help you add a PIN again? Let us know in the comments section below.


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