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Rename local user account

I have been asked this question many times on this blog – ‘How to rename a local user account from command line?’ Well, net user command supports most of the user account related operations that we can do from Control Panel-> User accounts in GUI. It supports password reset, locking or unlocking user accounts, adding users to groups etc. One thing the GUI supports and net user  command does not support is renaming user accounts. Still, there is a way to do that from windows command line.  We need to use WMIC Useraccount command for doing this.

Below is the command for renaming a local user account on a computer.

wmic useraccount where name='currentname' rename newname

Example: To rename the user account ‘xpuser’ as ‘win7user’ we can run the below command.

wmic useraccount where name='xpuser' rename win7user

Using this command we can rename administrator account also. The below command changes the user name from ‘administrator’ to ‘admin.’

wmic useraccount where name='administrator' rename admin

The above wmic commands work on XP, Server 2003, Vista, Windows 7 and Server 2008. On Vista and Windows 7, you need to run the commands from elevated command prompt.

{ 22 comments… add one }
  • Jeffrey A. Diaz November 16, 2011, 10:26 am


  • Anonymous June 11, 2013, 3:36 am

    it say that wmic is not recognized as internal or external command

    • Anonymous July 2, 2016, 12:21 am

      Same I’m getting the same thing

  • steve January 28, 2014, 2:34 pm

    Love this, thanks much… The gui would not perm change the uname, this worked like ‘magic’. PS: not real email, but sentiment is legit!

    • admin January 28, 2014, 4:35 pm

      Thanks Steve for the comment. Appreciation like this keeps us going.
      PS: no problem with the email id.

  • Ann April 24, 2014, 3:53 am

    Can not figure out how to change name. Help. Thank you

  • Cory May 24, 2014, 4:30 pm

    I recently renamed my user account, but the command prompt still shows my old name under , what gives?

  • Indy May 28, 2014, 12:57 am

    This is perfect! Thanks so much. Had never heard of this command before. Had to use it to change the guest account name in Windows 8.1 (non-pro) before activating the account for the first time. Only other way to change the guest account name is to activate it and change in the user accounts panel, but then certain elements of the account still refer to “Guest”. I then used “net users” to verify the change.

    Win8 Elevated Command Prompt: StartKey+X or Right click Start button, click on “Command Prompt (Admin)”

  • prashant November 7, 2014, 7:38 pm

    Not working. It says “Prashant-Invalid alias verb”.

    • Srini June 1, 2016, 1:25 pm

      Make sure the syntax is correct.

  • Maurice December 13, 2014, 12:55 am

    I unfortunately either deleted the only administrator account I had in my Control Panel, or inadvertently changed it incorrectly. I tried every one of your suggestions, and none of them worked. I’m still hoping you can get an administrator for me for Users in the Control Panel, please. Thank You

  • khan May 14, 2015, 12:04 pm

    Thank you for the wonderful post.
    it really helped me out with my problem.
    Thanks again,

  • Jerry Zhang December 14, 2015, 10:00 am

    Thank u very much~

  • Dakota January 9, 2016, 10:56 pm

    Did not work for me. It said successful, but it didn’t change anything. Thanks anyway!

    • Sharon January 19, 2016, 1:32 am

      I think you just have to run the command prompt as an administrator and try again.

    • rosisky January 22, 2016, 11:58 pm

      After doing the step restart your system before the system can show the new user name

  • Dazzy Mlv February 4, 2016, 1:06 pm

    Hey thanks man. It work for me
    ReturnValue = 0;

  • hanian May 16, 2016, 7:15 am

    this command renames the domain user in the same time, if there is a domain user with the same username of a local user

  • Rita May 21, 2016, 5:49 pm

    I tried changing the user account name with both regular command prompt & then elevated. Both came back w/ success message but on restart, when command prompt opened, always showed old name. I am using windows 7 pro, sp1, 64 bit. When I did elevated command, prompt showed Windows\system 32 instead of account name. Don’t know if that was supposed to show.

    • Srini May 21, 2016, 10:02 pm

      That’s strange, can’t think of what could be wrong. Regarding elevated cmd, it always opens up in c:\windows\system32 folder, that’s not a problem.

  • Varun Naik May 24, 2016, 5:17 am

    What to do when user name have space in between the name?
    Single quotation or double quotation doesn’t work.

    • Srini June 1, 2016, 1:23 pm

      I found the below command to be working

      wmic useraccount where name='test user' rename 'test user2'

      After rename, double clicking the user account in computer management(compmgmt.msc) had thrown below error for me.
      ‘The following error occurred while attempting to read the properties of the user.
      An unknown directory object was requested’
      I had to close ‘computer management’ window and reopen to see the accounts with new name.

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