[Guide] Windows 10 Administrator Privileges Usage Guide

[Guide] Windows 10 Administrator Privileges Usage Guide

/ Shayne Sherman

How to Get Administrator Privileges on Windows

Administrator privileges refer to the level of access and control granted to users of a Windows operating system, network, or application. An administrator is a user with the authority to change the system settings, install or uninstall programs, manage user accounts, and perform other administrative tasks.

This level of access is usually required for system maintenance, troubleshooting, and security management purposes. However, it also comes with the potential for misuse or unauthorized access to sensitive data, making it crucial for administrators to exercise caution and adhere to best practices to ensure the security and integrity of the system.

In this context, there are several ways to obtain administrator privileges on Windows 10, including enabling the built-in Administrator account, using the Command Prompt or PowerShell, or creating a new user account with administrator privileges. However, it is essential to note that granting administrator privileges to a user account should be done with caution and only when necessary, as it carries the risk of potential security threats and system vulnerabilities.

Make Sure You’re Allowed Admin Rights

It may seem self-evident, but you may not have administrative privileges on a computer because the system owner or administrator has restricted access and requires an administrator password for standard users. This is a common practice in corporate or personal settings where security is a concern and is intended to prevent unauthorized access or changes to the system settings.

If you require administrative access to a computer you do not own or manage, you should request the owner or administrator to grant you the necessary permissions. However, it is important to note that attempting to bypass or circumvent administrative restrictions on a school or corporate computer is not advisable and can lead to potential security breaches or consequences.

Check if UAC Is Enabled

It is advisable to verify that the User Account Control (UAC) is not disabled, as doing so will prevent standard accounts from receiving UAC prompts. As a result, attempts to execute administrative actions will fail without notification.

1. Open the Start menu and type UAC.

2. Select and open Change User Account Control Settings.

change user account control settings

3. By default, the slider is set to the second line from the top; make sure it is not set to the bottom. Click the OK button to save changes.

uac never notify

User Account Control: Know Your Rights

Windows’s User Account Control (UAC) shield icon indicates functions that necessitate administrative privileges. Depending on whether you have admin rights, you will encounter different prompts when attempting to take action. Administrators must select Yes when asked to authorize a program to make changes, while standard accounts must input an admin’s password to proceed.

This functionality enables users to perform administrative tasks without logging into an admin account. One can bypass UAC prompts and execute administrative actions without an admin password.

1. Press Win + I to open Windows Settings.

2. Click Accounts > Family & other users.

select change account type

3. Select your account under the Other user’s section and click the Change account type button.

4. Change it from Standard account type to Administrator account type.

change account type to administrator

5. Click the OK button to have full Admin rights.

How to Get Administrator Privileges on Windows 10 With Command Prompt

1. Type cmd in the search box.

2. Select Command Prompt from the search results and select Run as administrator.

run as admin cmd

3. In the Command Prompt window, type net user and press Enter to list all the user accounts on the computer.

net user command

4. Take note of the username you want to grant Administrator Privileges with.

5. To grant Administrator Privilege, type the following command and press enter.

Net localgroup administrators Account Name /add

net localgroup

Substitute Account Name with the username of the user you wish to include in the administrators’ group. In this instance, I added the user named User 1 to the local administrators’ group.

6. You should see The command completed successfully; you have successfully granted the user administrator privileges message.

How to Get Administrator Privileges on Windows 10 with PowerShell

1. In the Search box, type Powershell. Select Run as an administrator.

run powershell as administrator

2. In the PowerShell prompt, type Get-LocalUser and press Enter to list all users on the PC.

3. Check the accounts list and note the username you want to add to the administrator’s group.

get localuser in powershell

4. Type the following command to grant administrator privileges and press Enter:

Add-LocalGroupMember -Group Administrators -Member User2

add localgroupmember command in powershell

5. Replace User2 with the username you want to grant Administrative rights.

6. Next, type Get-LocalGroupMember -Name administrators to confirm the user is now a local administrator group member.

Change User Account Type from the Control Panel

If your computer has an existing administrator account, you can create additional accounts with administrative privileges through the Control Panel.

1. Open the Control Panel using the search box.

2. Click the Change account type link under User Accounts.

change account type under user accounts

3. Select the Standard user account you want to change into an Administrator account.

4. Click on Change the account type.

select change account type

5. Select the Administrator option and click the Change Account Type button.

change account type to administrator

6. Close the Control panel; the user should have Administrator rights.

Change Account Type from the User Accounts Utility

1. Press Win + R to open the Run box. Type netplwiz and press Enter.

run netplwiz

2. Select the Standard User account you want administrator access and click the Properties button.

standard user account properties

3. Go to the Group Membership tab, select the Administrator option, then click Apply and OK.

select administrator in group membership

Temporarily Access the Windows Administrator Account

When Windows Vista was introduced, the built-in Administrator account in Windows was disabled as a security measure. This was done because the default Administrator account has unrestricted access to your computer and could cause much damage if it fell into the wrong hands, like malware.

Fortunately, Windows has some tools to restore admin rights to your account, but they only work if you’re an administrator. However, depending on what’s causing the problem with your admin rights (like being unable to access other users’ files even after accepting UAC prompts), you might still be able to enable the built-in admin account.

1. Open the command prompt and type the following command to enable a built-in administrator account, then press Enter:

net user administrator /active: yes

net user administrator active yes

After completing the previous step, log out of your current account, and you will see Administrator as one of the log in options. This account has no password, so you can log in and perform any action. However, it is recommended that you disable the account for safety once you’re finished working by using the same command and changing the yes to no.

Add a New Administrator Account to Get Administrator Privileges

1. Press Win + R, type lusrmgr.msc and press Enter.

2. Click on Users > More Actions > New User.

new admin account with admin privileges

3. Fill in the username and password and click the Create button.

craete new user account

4. After creating, double-click the user to open the User properties.

5. Go to the Member Of tab and click the Add button.

6. Type administrator in the object name field and click the Check Names button.

Mastering Windows 10 Administrator Privileges for Enhanced Control and Security

In this comprehensive guide, we have delved into the world of Windows 10 Administrator privileges, equipping you with the knowledge and understanding to wield this powerful tool effectively. By grasping the concepts of user accounts, access levels, and permission settings, you can confidently navigate the intricacies of Windows 10 administration. Whether you need to install software, modify system settings, or manage user accounts, Administrator privileges provide you with the necessary authority to perform these tasks. However, it is crucial to exercise caution and responsibility when using these privileges to maintain the security and stability of your system.

Following the best practices outlined in this guide, you can balance granting necessary access and safeguarding your computer from potential threats. So, embrace the power of Windows 10 Administrator privileges, and unlock a world of control and security that empowers you to tailor your computing experience to your needs.

Shayne Sherman
Meet the author

Shayne is an expert on all things Microsoft Windows and computer security. As a Windows user of over 30 years, he has been featured on Business Insider, Yahoo, Tech Republic, Hacker Noon, Techopedia, and many other publications. Aside from entertaining at his home theater, he enjoys spending time with his family, including his English bulldog, Fergie.