How to fix the Microsoft system error 8646


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Windows is an excellent operating system with a lot of features and options for users to take advantage of. The Windows OS first appeared way back in 1985 and has been updated multiple times since then. It has come a long way from its humble beginnings and is now one of the most popular operating systems on the planet, especially when it comes to personal computers. Windows has a lot of standard features in it, but there are also lots of different ways to customize your personal experience with Windows that can in time cause issues. On this iteration we will be diving into the causes and how to fix the Microsoft system error 8646.

When working on a PC. it’s all too easy to make a mistake, causing a frustrating error message on your screen. Common computer errors can occur for a lot of reasons, ranging from being the victim of a virus to a simple faulty driver, device, disk error, installed piece of software or an app that has not been uninstalled properly. Many of these offer an error notification and never provide a fatal error. Whatever the cause, there will be times when you’ll need to fix the system error yourself or have a look for a solution online.

Windows is far from being an error-free operative system

Microsoft error 8646

All Windows users at some stage will experience an unexpected error, problem with their operating system or user errors. Issues with a faulty driver, device, installed piece of software don’t always require a full re-installation of the OS. Formatting a PC due to a runtime error, application error, app error is obviously a last resort for most users. It’s a painful and time-consuming process to restore an operating system and remember when this is done, all user data will be lost. In most cases, however, a faulty driver, device, installed a piece of software or an app that has not been uninstalled properly are the most common errors that cause a common error message, and these can be fixed by updating a couple of drivers or running a simple system fix to resolve the issue.

No matter what way you look at it, you’re going to want to remove the error from your screen and start again with Windows. There are a few different ways to do this, and some might be preferable over others in certain instances. Fortunately, there are easy ways to get rid of issues that occur to bring your computer back up and running smoothly.

One common issue that can occur is the Windows Error code 8646 which appears when the operating system is not authoritative for the specified account and operations. This results in actions not being completed. This error can be caused by many factors and is normally resolved by getting to the root cause of the issue. If this is not done, it can lead to users being locked out of their accounts and being unable to access other important system features.

In this article, we will explain how to fix the Microsoft system error 8646, since is a common problem for many Windows users and we will guide you through a few possible solutions to the error 8646 messages as well as how to avoid it from appearing.

What is the System Error 8646

The system Error 8646 message can be triggered by several different scenarios. From exchanges across discussion forums, websites, and social media groups it can appear because of various scenarios such as follows:

  1. If you attempt to change a user password or a login password on a local account, you may be unable to do so as you do not have the permissions to change the password via the net user command in the command prompt (CMD). This scenario can only be changed if the password is amended via the control panel or by accessing the settings app within Windows 10.
  2. If you attempt to change the Windows login password of a Microsoft account via a net user command which cannot be completed as the only way to do this is by using the official password reset options hosted on Microsoft Live.
  3. An account has been corrupted in Windows 10. This can happen if an Antivirus program on a computer was scanning the PC while a user was attempting to log in to a User Account.

How to fix the Microsoft system error 8646

Going about how to fix the Microsoft system error 8646 has several verified methods that highly skilled information technicians and installation specialists have discovered can help resolve the problems, especially those related to a user password.

Method number 1

You can encounter the Microsoft system error 8646 if you use a net user CMD command to reset a password. Thankfully, you can fix the issue easily if you can get past the initial sign-in menu of the Windows Operating system. Change the password for the local account in the Control Panel menu. Press Windows key + R to open a Run dialog box and then type the word “control” in the text box and press “Enter” to open up the Control panel interface.

How to fix the Microsoft system error 8646

Note: Click “Yes” if prompted by the User Account Control (UAC). You will now have admin access. Once you are in the Control panel interface menu use the search function in the window to search for all the “user accounts”, then click on “User Accounts” from the list of results. Click “Yes” if prompted by the User Account Control (UAC). You will now have admin access. Choose the account that you’re using, then click on the “Change the password” option in the list. All you need to do now is enter a new password as well as your old one and choose “Change password.” After this, restart the computer to complete the operation. Yes!

Classic User Accounts

Method number 2

Option A – If you know the password, simply change the password of a Microsoft account. You can do this by using a net user command in the settings app on a Windows 10 computer. Press the Windows key + R to open up the Run dialog box. Type “ms-settings: sign-in options” inside the dialog box and press Enter to open the Sign-in options of the Settings menu.

How to fix the Microsoft system error 8646

Note: Click “Yes” if prompted by the User Account Control (UAC). You will now have admin access. When inside the Sign-in menu, look for Password in the right window (under Manage how you sign into your device) and click on “Change”. Follow the on-screen prompts and enter the current password and add a new one. Hit “Next” and restart the computer.

How to fix the Microsoft system error 8646

Note: Use Option B below if you are unable to access the Microsoft Windows 10 settings screen.

Option B – What do I do if I encounter a System Error 8646 (when attempting to use the “net user Username New password” CMD command)? Sadly, the only way to reset a Microsoft account password is by going onto the internet. Visit the Microsoft page (https://account.live.com/password/reset) to recover an account. You must enter a phone number or email address associated with the account, click “Next” and choose from a pre-populated list of options that you can use to reset a password. When completed, you can reset the password. Yay!

Recover a Microsoft account online

If a Microsoft account has been corrupted you will, unfortunately, must fix the corrupted user profile by using the registry editor to create a new user and then transfer all files from the old account to the new account. What a nightmare! The registry editor can be accessed by right-clicking the start button with your mouse and then typing in “Regedit” after clicking on run. Click on the HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE \ SOFTWARE \ Microsoft \ Windows NT \ CurrentVersion \ ProfileList and with the ProfileList open, look at finding a folder called S-1-5. All the user profiles on the computer are located in this folder. Look for the S-1-5 folder in the “Data” Column for the ProfileImagePath file that has the user’s profile that is corrupted.

In this, you will see a username in the right-hand data column. When you have identified the right S-1-5 folder, double click on the State field in the same right-hand window. In the DWORD Window, edit the value data from 1 to 0. Do this and then click OK. Also, look to double-click on RefCount entry and change the Value Data from 1 to 0 there. Note, click anywhere in the right-hand pane if you are unable to find the RefCount entry. Click New> DWORD (32 bit) and type RefCount for this New DWORD. Close the Registry Editor and restart your computer login. Phew!

Final Words

We hope our guide provides you with a solution on how to fix the Microsoft system error 8646 that may arise when attempting to login into your Microsoft account using Windows 10 operating system. If you ever encounter any other issues on your PC or Mac, ensure you visit our website to check out other guides we have on our website for help and solutions.

If the above article cannot solve your problem, we’d recommend consulting a skilled Microsoft Windows technician to diagnose and fix it. A Microsoft certified Windows technician may be your best option here. If you find that these options do not work for you, you may have to call on the Microsoft helpline or seek the assistance of a trained professional technician to get it resolved at:  https://support.microsoft.


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