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Net accounts

Updates the user accounts database and modifies password and logon requirements for all accounts.


net accounts [/forcelogoff:{minutes | no}] [/minpwlen:length] [/maxpwage:{days | unlimited}] [/minpwage:days] [/uniquepw:number] [/domain]


/forcelogoff: { minutes | no } : Sets the number of minutes to wait before ending a user's session with a server when the user account or valid logon time expires. The default value, no, prevents users from being forced to log off.

/minpwlen: length   : Sets the minimum number of characters for a user account password. The range is from 0 through 127 characters and the default is six characters.

/maxpwage: { days | unlimited } : Sets the maximum number of days that a user account's password is valid. The unlimited value sets no maximum time. The /maxpwage command-line option must be greater than /minpwage. The range is from 1 through 49,710 days (that is, unlimited equals 49,710 days), and the default value is 90 days.

/minpwage: days   : Sets the minimum number of days before a user can change a new password. The default value is zero days, which sets no minimum time. The range is from 0 through 49,710 days.

/uniquepw: number   : Requires a user to not repeat the same password for the specified number of password changes. The range is from 0 through 24 password changes, and the default is five password changes.

/domain   : Performs the operation on the primary domain controller of the current domain. Otherwise, the operation is performed on the local computer.

net help   command   : Displays help for the specified net command.


  • The Net Logon service must be running on the computer where you want to change account parameters. Used without parameters, net accounts displays the current settings for password, logon limitations, and domain information.

  • You must do the following before you can use net accounts:

    • Create user accounts. Use User Manager or net user to set up user accounts.

    • Run the Net Logon service on all servers that verify logon in the domain. Net Logon starts automatically at startup.

  • When you use **/forcelogoff:**minutes, a warning is sent minutes before users are forced to log off from the network. Users are also notified if any files are open. If minutes is less than two, users are warned to log off from the network immediately.


To display the current settings, the password requirements, and the server role for a server, type:

net accounts

To set a minimum of seven characters for user account passwords, type:

net accounts /minpwlen:7

To specify that users can reuse a password only after the fifth time they change passwords, type:

net accounts /uniquepw:5

To prevent users from changing passwords more often than every seven days, force users to change passwords every 30 days, and force users to log off after the logon time expires with a five-minute warning, type:

net accounts /minpwage:7 /maxpwage:30 /forcelogoff:5

To ensure that the preceding settings take effect for the domain that the computer is logged on to, type:

net accounts /minpwage:7 /maxpwage:30 /domain

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Net services overview

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