Signing out of

I happen to need to use more than one Microsoft account for my work. One of them is a work/school institution type login, which is forwarded to my institution’s login page.

Occasionally I’ve had a really frustrating issue where any attempt to log in to a Microsoft service in my browser is automatically sent on to the institution’s login page, before I have a chance to choose account.

Here’s a whole list of semi-obvious stuff I tried that did absolutely nothing to resolve the issue:

  • Cleared all site data / passwords / cookies etc
  • Closed all browser windows
  • Restarted my machine
  • Googled everything I could think of
  • Got embarrassed that I couldn’t log out of a website
  • Had a cup of coffee
  • Considered throwing PC off the roof

Anyway, what did work was this: a logout URL that I can’t see a link to anywhere, but visiting it forces logout of Microsoft (and seems to give me the option to choose account again):

How it started: “Connected to Windows”

Normally I don’t have this problem, because I use two completely separate browser profiles for the different accounts. Obviously I’d made a mistake somewhere to get the wrong account on one of my profiles.

Turns out the culprit was “Connected to Windows”, which I could see from the account selection screen (on the institutional account I didn’t want). You get the option to link an account to Windows 10 when you sign in, and I must have allowed it in a caffeine-deprived daze. I think this is why my other browser profile decided it was a good idea to start using my institution login.

If you have control of this and you’ve set it by mistake, you can remove it. In Windows 10 Go to Settings > Account > Access work & school. The linked account is in there and can be removed, and you have your account selection freedom back.

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