What is the difference between Standard User and Administrator in Windows 10?


Windows 10 has different user profiles that serve specific purposes and therefore have different characteristics. This classification is mainly reflected in each profile’s permissions in the operating system.

Incidentally, it is precisely because of this that some people are faced with the warning “You are not allowed to…” — which, in certain situations, can be quite frustrating. To better understand how your machine works, knowing the difference between a standard user and an administrator in Windows 10 is essential.


What is a user account?

Before we unravel the differences between the accounts available in the operating system, we must touch on a previous question: the concept of user accounts in the Microsoft universe.

Generally speaking, a user account gathers the data that tells the operating system which files you can access, as well as the changes you can make to your computer and, of course, your personal preferences — which include, for example, settings layout and security.

  How to Enable or Disable Guest Mode in Microsoft Edge

Account sorting in Windows 10

There are three types of accounts, each with a specific level of control:

  • Guest account: full of limitations, this option is ideal for temporary use of the machine;
  • Standard account: indicated for day-to-day activities since it has all the basic accesses;
  • Admin account: with the highest number of accesses, the administrator account must have more restricted use due to the computer’s security.

As a rule, each user can access the system through a login and a password.

Difference Between Standard User and Administrator in Windows 10

Now that you know how operating system user accounts work, it’s time to discuss the specifics of each one.

Standard user

As previously mentioned, this account allows access to most computer functionalities. However, things change if you want to implement changes that affect other users or the machine’s security. This is because, in such cases, the admin user needs to grant you the necessary permissions.

  How to Recover Lost Files with Windows File Recovery

Standard user access is quite broad concerning the programs installed on the computer, at least in terms of usage. The user is barred in attempts to install or uninstall software or hardware, as this activity is limited to the administrator. This logic also applies to deleting files necessary for the computer to function.

Admin user

As you might guess, the administrator account can make changes that affect other users, including deleting accounts, editing credentials, and other modifications. Access is broad to the point where the user can affect the operation of the computer itself.

With a very extensive access card, this type of account can freely install and uninstall programs and access all files on the computer. And, in the face of so many possibilities, it is worth quoting a famous saying: with great power comes great responsibility.

Therefore, if you are unfamiliar with using Windows 10, we recommend adopting the standard account daily. This way, other users will not be affected by your actions. And, more important than that, the security and operation of the computer will be intact.

Rohit is a certified Microsoft Windows expert with a passion for simplifying technology. With years of hands-on experience and a knack for problem-solving, He is dedicated to helping individuals and businesses make the most of their Windows systems. Whether it's troubleshooting, optimization, or sharing expert insights,