Nasty Windows 8.1 bug stops users logging onto their PC with a Microsoft account

Some folks using Windows 8.1 have been hit by a nasty bug which apparently prevents them from logging on to their PC using a Microsoft account.

The bug was reportedly caused by a recent Microsoft OS update – KB4038792 to be precise, the monthly security rollup of patches for September – and the software giant has acknowledged the problem.

As Computerworld spotted, on Microsoft’s ‘answers’ support forum, the company’s advice is that affected users will need to login with a local account for the time being – but obviously not being synced with your Microsoft account is a big pain.

Meanwhile, the software giant advised that it is working on a patch right now, but didn’t give any estimated time of arrival for the fix.

The Microsoft employee dealing with user queries on the support forum stated: “Our engineers are still in the process of creating a bug fix for the ‘Can’t connect to Microsoft Services’ error that occurs in Windows 8.1 when users try to add or switch to a Microsoft account.

“We have not yet received any estimated time frame for the bug fix. We'll post an update here once the bug fix has been released.”

It’ll be ready when it’s ready

There’s been no further post as of the time of writing, but we get the feeling this is not a simple fix. It’s not clear how many Windows 8.1 users are affected, but fingers crossed that Microsoft won’t take too much time in solving the problem.

You could chalk this one down as ‘another good reason to upgrade to Windows 10’, and note that the free upgrade to Microsoft’s newest OS is still (unofficially) available.

Indeed, some of the users posting on that support thread have suggested this may be Microsoft’s way of further ‘encouraging’ folks to make the leap to Windows 10. Or rather that the lack of priority for Windows 8.1 might be a reason to upgrade, given that the older OS is obviously way down the pecking order compared to the new kid on the operating system block.

Darren is a freelancer writing news and features for TechRadar (and occasionally T3) across a broad range of computing topics including CPUs, GPUs, various other hardware, VPNs, antivirus and more. He has written about tech for the best part of three decades, and writes books in his spare time (his debut novel - 'I Know What You Did Last Supper' - was published by Hachette UK in 2013).