If you try to sign in to your Microsoft account with an account name that we don’t recognize, you will receive the message, “That Microsoft account doesn’t exist. Enter a different email address or get a new account.” We can’t send you forgotten account information, but this article will walk you through some simple steps to help you find or remember it yourself.
Step 1: Did you type your account name incorrectly?
Double-check that you spelled your account name correctly. Check for typos and make sure characters aren’t swapped around. Try a couple different variations. If it’s an email address, maybe you used your middle name, or added a number to the end.
If you’ve changed your phone number or email recently, make sure you try your older ones too.
Be sure that you're using the correct domain such as @outlook.com, @gmail.com, or @live.com.
Step 2: Are you using an account name from a different type of account?
You cannot use your Xbox Gamertag to sign in to your Microsoft account. Gamertags are only meant to represent you to other people while you play and connect on Xbox. To sign in to your Microsoft account, use an email address, phone number, or Skype ID associated with the account.
Work or school accounts
If you tried to sign in using an account that was supplied by your work or school, it’s likely that you don’t have a Microsoft account. Work or school accounts can feel a lot like Microsoft accounts because you use them to sign in to Microsoft apps and services like Outlook or Office 365. But these accounts are restricted from services like Xbox and the Microsoft account website.
Step 3: Have you forgotten your account name?
It can be easy to forget your account name if you created it recently or if you haven’t signed in for a while. Here are some ways you can find your account details:
Ask a friend
If you created an Outlook or Hotmail account with your Microsoft account, did you send email to any friends? Ask them to check their inbox to see what email address you used.
Use a device that you're already logged into
If you have an Xbox, the Find your Microsoft email address walkthrough will take you through the process of finding your account information on your Xbox.
Check other email accounts you use regularly for emails from Microsoft about your account. They may mention your account name.
- Open any Office 2016 application, such as Word or Excel.
- Select File. If you didn't open an existing document, you may need to create a new document to see the File menu.
- From the navigation on the side, select Account.
- Under Product Information, is the name of your Office product and the phrase, Belongs to: along with the account associated with this version of Office.
- If you don't see Belongs to:, select Update Options > Update Now. After the update is complete, close the app and then reopen it. The account information should now be available.
Step 4: Could your account be closed or deleted?
If your account was deleted, it cannot be recovered. If you try to sign in to an account that has been deleted, you will see the “Microsoft account doesn’t exist” message. Check to see if one of these options applies to you:
You closed your account but want to reopen it
Once you close your Microsoft account, you can reopen it within 30 days by signing in again. We hold on to your data for this period so you won’t lose anything if you change your mind. However, after those 30 days have passed, we permanently delete the account and its data.
It's been a long time since you've signed in to your account
We do delete accounts due to continued inactivity. Try to remember the last time you signed in, and check the chart below to see if your account might have been deleted due to inactivity.
|If the last time you signed in was...||Your account would expire...|
|Before June 2014||After 1 year of inactivity|
|June 2014–August 2015||After 2 years of inactivity|
|After August 2015||After 5 years of inactivity|
If these steps didn't work
If you still can't find your username or think that your account was deleted, you can always Sign up for a new Microsoft account. If your account was closed more than 30 days ago, you might even be able to get the same email address again.