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Windows 8 works better when login is done with a Microsoft ID (aka Windows Live ID).

However when I try to establish a network file sharing connection from Ubuntu 12.10, the username (which is an email address like and password for that ID are not accepted.

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which Ubuntu version you are using ? Please, provide more information about your problem. – Akash Shende Jan 19 '13 at 20:28
If it was not posted in "Ask Ubuntu" this question would have nothing that would make it seem to be connected to Ubuntu. One could think it is a pure "win 8" problem.... strange – humanityANDpeace Jan 19 '13 at 20:43
Oops... Ubuntu 12.10 is the version in question here. It is actually running as a VM in Hyper-V under Windows 8 Pro but I also have hardware running Ubuntu 10.04LTS. The same question applies to those versions. – lcbrevard Jan 19 '13 at 20:52
Now it's in the description as well as the title. – lcbrevard Jan 19 '13 at 20:57
I might as well mention that when connecting from another Windows system the email address based username works fine. I suppose I should try from Mac OS X as well, but what I need here is for Ubuntu to work! – lcbrevard Jan 19 '13 at 21:00

I figured it out.

The particular Microsoft Account aka Microsoft ID aka Windows Live ID is based on an email address which has "Firstname Lastname" as the user name.

The password is that of the the online Microsoft Account but the username for connecting to shares is the first name of the Microsoft Account, in this case Firstname.

A good clue is that C:\Users\Firstname is the home directory.


  • USERNAME = first name of username in Microsoft Account = folder name under C:\Users
  • WORKGROUP = whatever group the machine is in
  • PASSWORD = password used to login to the Microsoft Account on the web

I have confirmed this works with connections from:

  • Ubuntu 12.10
  • Ubuntu 10.04LTS
  • Mac OS X 10.8.2

From other Windows 8 and 7 machines the username is the full email address:

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this did not work for me :( – kenwarner Jan 24 '13 at 0:49
Tks! This was driving me crazy :) – andrecarlucci Dec 29 '13 at 23:28
Not only that, but the user has to be added to the machine. Normally with HomeGroup networking it is not necessary to add the user from other machines to the target machine in order to access it. People for whom this worked must have had the account on the target PC too. That is common if all users use all PCs and logon locally. But does not solve the problem of generally connecting with valid microsoft IDs for which shares give permission. For that, the only workaround is to add the user to the PC. Finally, the user name is not always the first name, e.g. first_000 not First. – Code Chief Jun 16 '14 at 19:15
But this is a really an annoying Microsoft problem. I feel every HomeGroup device should be trusted to authenticate users like a domain controller for any Microsoft account it knows, directly from the user principal name (email address). Maybe Windows 9 then. The only way Ubuntu is connecting is because they created local accounts matching each Microsoft account, that's standard SMB then no special support from Ubuntu. Do Microsoft even provide an API for this? Personally I'd not want to support it directly either until they sort it out / Windows 9 or 10. – Code Chief Jun 16 '14 at 19:18

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