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How to Change Primary Account On Chromebook

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The first account that logs into a Chromebook becomes to primary account or Owner. To change the primary account on your Chromebook, reset and log in using the new account.

Change Primary User of Chromebook

To change the Owner of your Chromebook:

  1. Log into your Chromebook using the current owner account.
  2. Open Settings > Advanced > Reset settings.
  3. Click Powerwash. Click Restart to confirm. This will reset your Chromebook and remove all the data.
  4. When your Chromebook restarts, log in using the new account that you want to make the “owner” of this Chromebook.

That’s the gist of this article. Now, let’s get into the details.

Who is “Owner” in Chrome OS

The first user who logs into a Chromebook becomes the “Owner” user. This is similar to the Administrator accounts on other computers.

Here are a few things that only an Owner user can do on a Chromebook:

  • Sign-in permissions
  • Network management
  • Time zone
  • System channel setting
  • Usage statistics and crash reports

Change Owner (Admin) On a Chromebook

The first user who logs in to a Chromebook becomes the Owner user. So, if you reset the Chromebook and log in using the new user account, that new user will become the Owner of the Chromebook.

Factory resetting Chromebook to change Owner may not be the best possible solution, but for now, this is the only method that Chrome OS provides to change Owner account.

However, Chrome OS is different from other operating systems and can be set up quickly after a reset. Also, if you are changing the Owner to give your Chromebook to someone outside your family, it is a good idea to reset the device before giving it away!

Reset your Chromebook to change owner
Reset your Chromebook to change owner

So, how do you reset a Chromebook? Read How To Factory Reset a Chromebook, a guide from Chrome Story.

After resetting your Chromebook, log in using your new owner account. You can use this method when you hand over your Chromebook to a family member or sell your device.

School or Office Chromebooks

If your school or company IT administrator manages your Chromebook, you may not be able to do this.

You will need to contact your Chrome OS administrator to reset and change the Owner in such a case.


9 responses to “How to Change Primary Account On Chromebook”

  1. That didn’t work. I wasn’t able to log in any other account but the previous owner account due to the “GOOGLE lock” u can’t change any phone without having the original google email address you open ur brand new device with. Unless you have an older model ex: Samsung s6 u can any phone older than that u cant. I lost a lot of phones due to google lock

    1. These instructions are for Chromebooks. Are you referring to changing account on a Chromebook?

  2. How can i change the owner primary email account on the chromebook without loosing all of my files?

    1. You should first back up your files to another location, local storage (USB or SD card) or Cloud (Google Drive or Dropbox etc).

  3. what if i dont have a hard drive and cant get one but i want to change the owner of the account without deleting anything?

  4. I power washed my chromebook and signed in with the account I wanted to be owner (an already existing account), however when I sighed out to add more users, it make me got through the setup process again. I’ve restarted my laptop a few times now and it keeps making my go through the setup process, how can I fix this?

  5. I am not given the “powerwash” option. I’m on an HP Pavilion Notebook PC which seems to be not quite a PC and not quite a chromebook. My only option is “reset settings” and that didn’t remove my google account. Suggestions?

  6. aripramudyantoro Avatar
    aripramudyantoro

    I want to set my office/school Google account (@ugm.ac.id) as my default account in my chromebook. How can I do that? After power washing chromebook dan setting my school email address as owner, it was not directed to UGM single sign on page and if I forced writing down my school password it said wrong password

  7. Daniel Salcedo Avatar
    Daniel Salcedo

    this did not work for me too


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