When I heard that Files On Demand became available to those on the Fast Ring Windows 10 Creator’s Update Insider’s Program version 16215, I had to get in. I went to the Windows Insider Program website and signed up using one of my Microsoft accounts. I have an older laptop that isn’t being used right now and I wanted to put it on that.
This is the story of how choosing the wrong Microsoft account and misunderstanding how that account was being used, resulted in putting all three of my computers (including my work computer), on the Windows Insider Fast Track Program!
Insider’s Program Background
First, a little background to the Windows Insider Program. This program lets people get access to what the Windows folks are working on, which is the next big iteration of Windows 10. It’s called the Creator’s Update and it’ll come out for everyone this fall sometime. If computer enthusiasts like me want to, we can sign up to get either fast or slow versions of the upcoming Windows 10. People who signed up are cautioned not to put these potentially buggy Windows versions on their production computers (the ones we use for work). Things can go terribly wrong with early releases, so you don’t want to put your work computer at risk. They like to get feedback from enthusiasts – bug reports or suggestions.
Because of potential bugs or crashes, I hadn’t signed up for the Insider Program with either my desktop or new laptop. But I saw no reason why I couldn’t test it out on my old laptop. So I did take precautions to make a recovery disk and also a bootable USB just in case. Then I downloaded the ISO and converted it into an executable file and installed the latest Creator’s Update. I did this on a Saturday and the install seemed to go fine and I was up and running. My plan was to do some videos of the new OneDrive and the Files On Demand feature the next week.
Started Getting Windows Insider Builds on ALL Computers
Four days later, I was up early and on my 2 laptops and noticed they both had updates to install, so I got them started and then went to my desktop and saw there were some there to install as well. So all 3 of my computers were receiving updates. I didn’t think too much about it until when they were finished, I got the Hello and Welcome screens which usually means something big happened.
To my horror, I was seeing down at the lower right of all my computers that I was on the Windows 10 Insider Preview!
How It Happened
I use the same Microsoft account on all three of my computers. That way, when I sign into each computer, I’ll have the same documents on each computer. This is essential for the way I work. I need to have access to the same files wherever I am. I accomplish this using OneDrive personal and OneDrive For Business, along with SharePoint. So any computer I’m on will have files ready for me to access.
You’ve probably figured out how it happened before you read this far…since the Windows Insiders Program is tied to a Microsoft account – and since I was using that very same Microsoft account on my other two computers, the Insider’s Program updates were delivered to them and installed.
Unfortunately for me, the logic of that didn’t register. I thought signing up to the Insider Program with a Microsoft Account meant they were tying a Windows 10 Insider preview to an account. It didn’t cross my mind that the account was tied to receiving builds to any device using that Microsoft account! Lesson learned!
How I Rolled Updates Back and Changed My Windows Insider Status
I was most concerned about my desktop (work computer). I thought about looking for a rolling back updates option, but then I thought I’d do the tried and true System Restore that I’ve used successfully in the past. Below on the left is System Restore and on the right is the newer way to roll back, using the Recovery setting that is found in ‘Settings’. Some time ago, I made sure System Restore was turned on and increased the storage needed to make several restore points as time went by. So I chose to go back just 3 days. I held my breath and clicked to start it up. It took probably 45 minutes or so, but the system was restored back to where it was pre-Insider.
Now I needed to change my Microsoft account associated with the Windows Insider Program
Changing Windows Insider Program Settings
Since I didn’t want to leave the Insider Program, I looked for a way to switch my Insider Account to a different Microsoft Account. I thought I’d have to jump through some hoops to do this, but it was so easy!
I went to Settings>Update & Security>Windows Insider Program and clicked the ‘Change’ and then I simply chose another account to register and it was done! I also changed to the Slow Ring so as to get Windows updates at a slower, more reliable pace.
Now I’m on the Slow Ring with a different Microsoft account and it doesn’t affect my work computer.
Lesson learned – plan, prepare and think ahead! I initially thought about choosing a lesser-used Microsoft account, but I already had the one on that computer and decided to go ahead with that. So although I spent a couple of hours creating recovery media, I should have been thinking more.
I hope this story is helpful for you! If you have a similar learning experience, please share it in the comment section.