Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums

Use Metro Apps As Admin AND Be Able To Sync, d/l Store apps, etc???

  1. #1

    Portland, Oregon, USA
    Posts : 182
    Windows 8.1 Pro x64, Windows Server 2012 R2 x64

    Use Metro Apps As Admin AND Be Able To Sync, d/l Store apps, etc???

    OK, i'd like to make it clear that i'm using the so-called "real" Administrator account that is hidden but can be activated, not a regular account with admin privelidges. At first i was trying to figure out if Metro apps can be used by this account, and it appeared that they cant, but managed to find a trick to enable it. i did it by making sure UAC is on, making sure that FilterAdministratorToken is set to a value of 1 in the Registry, and by enabling "User Account Control: Admin approval mode for the built-in Administrator account" (secpol.msc [Local Security Policy]> Local Policies> Security Options).

    So i did a bit more research and toying around, only to discover that although i might have found a workaround for running most Metro apps in general, i discovered that syncing, d/l'ing of apps from the Windows Store, etc is not possible unless you're using a Microsoft account.Please note that any other account with admin privelidges can use the apps without a hitch, as well as any Standard account. So it clearly is not a limitation of just having an admin account, alone.

    Also, the built-in Admin is the only kind of account that cant be converted from a local account to a MS Account, all other accounts with admin privelidges can do so. If you look in the Control Panel and try to make changes to the account, you will find that the option isnt available, whereas with other accounts it is. This brings about the issue of not being able to sync or d/l Store apps. also note that there is a difference between logging into Windows with a MS Account, and simply accessing the apps while using a local account and then manually inputting your MS Account username/password when requested. By signing in with a MS Account no Metro app will ever prompt you to login after youve done so initially the first time, since it remembers your details, unless you've reset your password or account security has been compromised, etc. Judging from what i've read, my workaround enables most Metro apps to function except syncing, d/l'ing of Store apps, and perhaps a few other small things/issues, and so therefore this is not a true solution, since other accounts have none of these issues. Since the option to convert the real Admin account to a MS Account is not available, yet is available to other accounts with admin access as well as Standard accounts, then i (supposedly) cannot use these functions to the fullest extent.

    I am the type of person who prefers to use Windows/Linux while logged in as root/Admin rather than a limited user, all day, every day, because i trust myself and my abilities, am very careful, meticulously maintain my systems with the utmost care and caution. i do understand that using Admin is considered to be a security risk, but it's a risk i'm willing to take and i dont mind learning from my mistakes in the event that bad things happen. i do not care to be told by Microsoft how to run my system, what i can do on them, etc. Complete and absolute control is what i demand, at least to the greatest extent possible considering that Windows is proprietary and closed-source, yet i depend on it for many things like running a business, gaming, etc.

    I didnt post this to rant or spout my opinions, but to solicit feedback on how this issue(s) can be overcome or worked around without having to use a 2nd account to get the full features of Metro apps. I'm also wondering if there is possibly a way, official, unofficial , or otherwise, of being able to run a Metro app as another user account (whether local or MS Account doesnt really matter, i think), while still remaining on the Metro screen of the real Admin account without having to manually log into my 2nd account and access Metro from there. By perhaps using a "Run As" command/link/shortcut or similar. Maybe that sounded a bit long-winded and confusing, so just read carefully, maybe someone will understand what i'm asking. Also, please inform me if any of my conclusions are incorrect.

    Any feedback/help is appreciated!

      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  2. #2

    Posts : 21,863
    64-bit Windows 10

    Hello Stephen, and welcome to Eight Forums.

    Setting that security policy below to be enabled will basically just turn the built-in elevated "Administrator" account into an unelevated administator account that requires UAC approval to open or run anything that requires elevated rights to do so.

    Click image for larger version

    This would be why you are able to open the Store afterwards, but you would still need to sign into the Store with any Microsoft account to be able to install any "Metro" Store apps.

    You still will not be able to switch the built-in "Administrator" to be a Microsoft account. It can only remain as a local account.

    Hope this helps,
    Last edited by Brink; 24 Oct 2012 at 03:54.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3

    Posts : 1,925
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    I really get a kick out of people that say "I know what i'm doing, and I don't want to be told what to do..." and then they can't figure out how to do what they want... lol. If you spent half as much time just getting used to using the system as designed, rather than trying to find workarounds to cripple the security of your computer.. you'd probably be a lot happier.

    In any event, the problem here is that the Administrator account cannot be associated with a Microsoft account. This is for security and stability reasons (ie you could get locked out of your system in certain situations if this were the case). Microsoft isn't saying "Hey, lets mess with Enigma and make it so his administrator can't use Metro". There are technical reasons for their decisions.

    Metro is tied to having a Microsoft account. the Administrator account can't be tied to such an account for security reasons.

    Now the reasons why Administrator must be a local account are tied to the way that Windows creates user contexts, and how it does network based security (largely for Windows Domain Accounts) but they are using a similar system for Microsoft online accounts, which is why they have similar behavior.

    Windows MUST have at least one local account that is never tied to network security. Without it, there's no way to bypass the network security.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  4. #4

    Portland, Oregon, USA
    Posts : 182
    Windows 8.1 Pro x64, Windows Server 2012 R2 x64

    ok, well, thanks for the quick reply. i pretty much suspected that what you're saying is the case, well before i even bothered posting. i know exactly about the option described in my post and pictured in yours, and what it would do, i just had to see if the Metro apps would work afterwards, only to find that other stuff didnt quite work as they were supposed to. if Metro didnt retardedly insist on UAC being active i would have completely disabled it by now, Metro is one of the main reasons why i plan to buy 8 this time around instead of pirating Windows like i've traditionally done in the past.

    Also, i'm wondering why i can manually sign into the Store, apps, etc, even though i cant convert my Admin account into a MS Account. Logically speaking its the equivalent of being signed in with an actual MS Account, so why shouldnt i be able sync and download Store apps? and besides that i think that local accounts are far better in terms of security, what would happen if hackers broke into MS servers and compromised millions of acounts, then suddenly all that data ppl have stored in the cloud are at risk. it has benefits but also risks that go along with it. its why i prefer my local Admin account over a MS Account for accesssing Metro. Surely they could build in a way for ppl to do this.

    What is their rationale behind not allowing users with the Admin account to have full access to all Metro functionality? they say it's a security risk, but for that matter ANYONE accessing Metro apps with ANY admin account, built-in or not, is at risk since they have elevated privelidges. i know there are a few minor differences between real Admin and account with admin privelidges, but functionally speaking theyre nearly identical, if not 100% the same.

    i can only hope that they rethink their thinking in the future, or at least allow the Admin account to become a MS Account while still retaining the full powers that go along with that local account. perhaps an update/patch, maybe. slim chances on that though.....

    And what about somehow running a Metro app as another user (which exists as a MS Account on my pc) w/o having to leave my Admin start screen. like a Run As option or something. my issue is not so much having to maintain 2 accounts on my pc, but having to switch back and forth to access certain things, i much prefer to do it all from same account, same start screen, same desktop. its just easier that way. in all my yrs of using Windows i have rarely had a compromise or major security risk, and the times it did happen was solved swiftly.

    Well , if anyone can think of anything at all, then please post. Thanks!

    Mystere: i fully understand that they do so for security reasons, i just like to run my pc by my standards is all. and i just so happen to think i should be able to access the full features of Metro as Admin. i , and others, should be able/allowed to make our own decisions regarding whether we're willing to take a risk in exchange for the possibility of being able to use Metro without hassles. i respect your opinions, but i dont question your intentions or how you run your pc, etc, so let's just leave it at this and agree to disagree in regards to our system maintenance philosophies. we dont know each other, and i'd say i've done a damn good job of keeping my system and info safe. you're in no position to judge. it's nothing personal.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5

    Posts : 1,925
    Windows 8.1 Pro

    You misunderstand what "security risk" means. It's not the kind of risk you think. The risk is that if your computer is not connected to the internet, then an account that is tied to a Microsoft account can get locked out. You can't log in. The purpose of the Administrator account not being able to be tied to a network account is to ensure that at least one user can always log into the system.

    This is enforced for technical reasons. If they didn't do this, they would have people climbing down their throat for designing a system that can lock people out.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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