Change the email address or phone number for your Microsoft account

Your Microsoft account lets you manage Microsoft services and subscriptions, like Xbox Live, Outlook.com, OneDrive, Skype, and Windows 10, from a single account. 

You can add up to 10 email addresses or phone numbers to your Microsoft account. Email addresses and phone numbers that are associated with your Microsoft account are called aliases and they use the same contacts, online storage, subscriptions, and account settings. Each alias lets you sign in to all your Windows 10 devices and services that use the Microsoft account.

Your aliases share a single password, and you can send and receive email with each. Your primary alias will be the username you use to sign in to your account, the username that appears on your Windows 10 devices, and how you show up to recipients in email. 

You can make changes to the email addresses or phone numbers (aliases) that are associated with your Microsoft account. Here are some reasons you might want to make changes:

  • You want to add or remove an email address or phone number.

  • You want to use a different email address or phone number to sign in.

  • You want a different username to appear on your Windows 10 devices.

  • You want an email address you can give to other companies or other people that can't be used to sign in to your account or access your info.

  • You received the “Which account do you want to use” message at sign-in.

Notes: 

The following sections provide the steps that you need to change the email address or phone number for your Microsoft account. Select the one that best fits your scenario.

To add a new email address or phone number as an alias:

  1. Sign in to Manage how you sign in to Microsoft with your Microsoft account. If you’re having issues signing in to your Microsoft account, go to Microsoft account help.

    Note: You may be prompted to enter your Microsoft account password, or to enter a code sent to the email address or phone number listed in your account's security information. By providing this info to us, we know the request is coming from you. 

  2. Under the Account aliases section, select either Add email or Add phone number.

  3. If you selected Add a phone number, go to step 5. If you selected Add email, choose whether to add:

    • A new email address. Select Create a new email address and add it as an alias, and then follow the instructions.

    • A non-Microsoft email address (such as an @gmail.com or @yahoo.com email address). Select Add an existing email address as a Microsoft account alias, and then select Add alias.

  4. After you've added the email address, you'll be asked to verify that you're the account owner:

    1. Select Verify next to the new alias. A message is sent to the account for verification.

    2. After you receive the message, select the included link to confirm that you own the account.

  5. If you selected Add a phone number, follow these steps:

    1. Select your country from the list.

    2. Enter the phone number you want to use, and then select Next.

    3. When you add a new phone number, we'll send a text message to that number to verify it. Enter the code from the text message, and then select Next.

You can use any email address or phone number you've listed as a username to sign in to your Microsoft account. If you want to sign in with a specific one or change the one you're signing in with, here's how:

  1. Sign in to Manage how you sign in to Microsoft with your Microsoft account. If you’re having issues signing in to your Microsoft account, go to Microsoft account help.

    Note: You may be prompted to enter your Microsoft account password, or to enter a code sent to the email address or phone number listed in your account's security information. By providing this info to us, we know the request is coming from you. 

  2. If you want to use an existing email address or phone number, go to step 6. If you're adding a new email address or phone number, go to step 3.

  3. If you selected Add a phone number, go to step 5. If you selected Add email, choose whether to add:

    • A new email address. Select Create a new email address and add it as an alias, and then follow the instructions.

    • A non-Microsoft email address (such as an @gmail.com or @yahoo.com email address). Select Add an existing email address as a Microsoft account alias, and then select Add alias.

  4. ​​​​​​After you've added the email address, you'll be asked to verify that you're the account owner:

    1. Select Verify next to the new alias. A message is sent to the account for verification.

    2. After you receive the message, select the included link to confirm that you own the account.

  5. If you selected Add a phone number, follow these steps:

    1. Select your country from the list.

    2. Enter the phone number you want to use, and then select Next.

    3. When you add a new phone number, we'll send a text message to that number to verify it. Enter the code in the text message, and then select Next.

  6. Under Sign-in preferences, select Change sign-in preferences.

  7. Either select the check boxes next to the aliases you want to use to sign in, or clear the check boxes for the aliases that you don’t want to use to sign in, and then select Save.

To change the username that appears on your Windows 10 devices, like your Xbox or Surface, change your primary alias.

Note: If you want to change how your name appears for your Microsoft account, use the steps on the How to change your Microsoft account display name page.

  1. Sign in to Manage how you sign in to Microsoft with your Microsoft account. If you’re having issues signing in to your Microsoft account, go to Microsoft account help.

    Note: You may be prompted to enter your Microsoft account password, or to enter a code sent to the email address or phone number listed in your account's security information. By providing this info to us, we know the request is coming from you. 

  2. Select Your info, and then select Manage how you sign in to Microsoft.

  3. Under the Account aliases section, select Make primary next to the alias you want to appear on your Windows 10 devices.

Just because you aren't using an email account or phone number anymore doesn't mean you have to remove it from your list of aliases. However, if you want to remove it, here's how.

Warning: 

  • If you remove an alias that's an email address from a Microsoft domain (like @hotmail.com, @live.com, @outlook.com, or @msn.com), the email is permanently deleted from our systems and can no longer be used to send or receive emails, nor can it be transferred to a different account. Microsoft also doesn't recycle email addresses, which means the alias can't be reclaimed later.

  • BEFORE YOU DELETE—Make sure you review the following before you delete an alias:

  • If you want to remove an email address from a non-Microsoft domain (like @gmail.com), then it usually becomes immediately available and can be added as an alias on another Microsoft account. NOTE: This removal doesn't trigger a deletion of the email across our systems. You can learn more about how to control your personal data in the Microsoft Privacy Statement.

  • Save any info that you want from this alias before you remove it.

  • If you're removing a primary alias, you'll need to choose another primary alias before it can be removed. Nothing associated with a deleted alias will transfer to your new primary alias. So if you use the primary account to sign in to any other Microsoft services, you won't be able to sign in to any of them after deleting the account.

  1. Sign in to Manage how you sign in to Microsoft with your Microsoft account. If you’re having issues signing in to your Microsoft account, go to Microsoft account help.

    Note: You may be prompted to enter your Microsoft account password, or to enter a code sent to the email address or phone number listed in your account's security information. By providing this info to us, we know the request is coming from you.

  2. Select Your info, and then select Manage how you sign in to Microsoft.

  3. Make sure you have one verified option that you can continue to use. If you only have one option and you plan to remove it, add a new phone or email.

  4. Under the Account aliases section, select Remove next to the email address or phone number you want to remove.

If you received the "Which account do you want to use?" message when you sign in, it means you have two accounts with Microsoft that use the same email address:

 

To stop receiving this message, use the steps in the “I want to use a different email address or phone number to sign in” section on this page to change the email address that you use to sign in to your Microsoft account. Doing this changes the way you sign in to your account, but it won’t affect any of the data associated with it.

  • Aliases can't be moved from one Microsoft account to another.

  • If you remove your alias from the account it’s on today, it will be deleted from our systems and isn't recoverable, so you'll no longer be able to use it to send or receive emails.

  • Microsoft doesn't recycle aliases once they are deleted. This means it won't be available again as an alias or new account to you or anyone else at a later time.

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