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Change a Windows Live ID FAQ

  • There are several reasons you might consider changing the Windows Live ID you use on your phone, but here are the three most common ones:

    • You have more than one Windows Live ID and you realize you'd rather use a different one on your phone.
    • You want to change the Windows Live ID you use for a Windows Live ID service, such as Xbox LIVE or Zune Music Pass.
    • You've moved to a new country or region.

    To learn more about choosing between Windows Live IDs, see Which Windows Live ID should I use? And to learn more about changing a Windows Live ID, see How to change the Windows Live ID on your Windows Phone .

  • Once you sign in with a Windows Live ID on your phone, the only way to change it is to restore your phone to factory settings and sign in with a different ID. Restoring your phone will delete any content and settings you've added to your phone, including music, videos, pictures, apps, games, documents, and accounts.

    If you decide to restore your phone, you should first back up all of your content to your computer or OneDrive (formerly SkyDrive). But if you bought anything that uses Digital Rights Management (DRM), you may not be able to use it once you've signed in with your new ID unless you buy it again. You'll also need to re-purchase any apps or games you purchased with your old ID once you've signed in with the new one.

    To learn more about backing up your music, pictures, and videos to your PC, see Sync music, pictures, and videos.

  • Warning

    To change the Windows Live ID you use on your phone, you'll have to restore your phone to factory settings, which will delete everything you've ever added to your phone. So make sure to back everything up first.

    1. Connect your phone to your computer with a cable, then use the Zune software to back up your pictures, music, and videos.

    2. On your phone, on Start, flick left to the App list, then tap Settings Settings icon > About.

    3. Tap Reset your phone.

    4. When the warning message appears, make sure you're really ready, then tap Yes. Your phone will restore itself to factory settings.

    5. When your phone restarts, your phone will guide you through several steps to set up your phone. When you get to the Sign in with a Windows Live ID page, sign in with the new ID you want to use.

  • If you buy apps, games, music, or videos using one Windows Live ID, you won't be able to use those same things with your new Windows Live ID. You'll need to buy them or download them again.

    You can find apps and games again at Marketplace on If you've bought or downloaded anything from that site before, or if you've used My Phone, you'll need to sign in there with your new ID as well.

    If you used a Zune Music Pass with your old ID to download music, you'll often be able to listen to that music again if you also have a Zune Music Pass with your new ID. It may take a moment for the new permissions to download for each song, each time you play one.

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