I am really new to windows phone and would like to continue to use it without MS account.

But where can I download apps if I don't want to use a Microsoft account on my phone?

Are there any reliable resources? Maybe somehow directly from the MS sites?

I would like to get the app "Files" which is by Microsoft.

The main reason is that since we don't know the password of the live.com account we used when we installed the phone, there is no way of adding another account now.

See: http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/winphone/forum/wp8-wpemail/can-i-change-my-microsoft-account-without/4abe33ba-2881-406e-9eb2-32b6dd2a7a54

  • If the phone is already set up with a Microsoft account, what's stopping you from getting apps from the Store? As far as I know, it doesn't ask you for the password once you've signed in during initial setup. – Indrek Dec 19 '14 at 8:10
  • For me it asks. I upgraded to 8.1. Maybe in the former version you could skip the password? – rubo77 Dec 19 '14 at 8:23
  • So you open the Store on the phone, and at some point between that and being able to install an app, it asks you for the MS account's password? I'm using 8.1 as well, and have never seen that. – Indrek Dec 19 '14 at 8:36
  • Yes. Maybe you entered your passwort initially one time when you installed – rubo77 Dec 19 '14 at 8:40
  • 2
    Okay, so then the password has probably changed. Personally I recommend you do a hard reset and start over, it'll be less trouble in the long term. – Indrek Dec 19 '14 at 9:40

Aside from side-loading unsigned XAPs that you compiled yourself, you'll be unable to install apps without a Microsoft Account, as this is required to use the Store.

You do however, not need a credit-card attached to the Microsoft Account, so there's very little reason not to create one.

Apps from the store is signed, and Microsoft don't have a deployment strategy for on-device installation of XAPs outside the store. (This might change with the purchase of HockeyApp the other day)


There is no way to install apps on your Windows Phone without using a Microsoft Account.

  • What about downloading the app from windowsphone.com, copying it to the phone and installing manually? – Indrek Dec 19 '14 at 8:08
  • @Indek I don't believe you can download from the store without signing in, with a Microsoft Account? – Rowland Shaw Dec 19 '14 at 12:01
  • @RowlandShaw I just tried, and it looks like you can, at least free apps. – Indrek Dec 20 '14 at 16:49
  • Interesting - is that new? I will try it myself as soon as I got time and will update or delete my answer accordingly. – Thomas Dec 20 '14 at 22:47
  • You certainly couldn't on 7.x, but can't say I've tried with 8.x... – Rowland Shaw Dec 21 '14 at 16:03

How to install apps from an SD card

In addition to installing apps to your Windows Phone from the Store, you can transfer, or sideload, apps from an SD card to your phone. Windows Phone app files are also known as .XAP files. You can download .XAP files to your PC, and then move the files to the phone's SD card.

To download .XAP files from the Windows Phone Store on the web

  1. Open a web browser and go to the Free Apps section on www.windowsphone.com.

  2. Click Apps + Games, and then click the app you want to download.

  3. Scroll down on the webpage, and then click Download and install manually (below the app requirements and supported languages).

  4. When prompted, save the .XAP file to a location on your SD card

  5. Insert the SD card that contains one or more .XAP files into your phone.

  6. In the App list, tap Store Store Tile.

  7. Tap More More icon, and then tap Install local apps. (If you're running an earlier version of Windows Phone, look for the SD card option instead.)

  8. Select the apps you want, and then tap Install.

    1. Free apps and games can be used immediately.
    2. Paid apps and games without a trial must be purchased before you can use them.

I am not sure if this works:

Transfer and install an app on your phone via email or browser

  1. Open the browser on your phone and download the .XAP file or Send the .XAP file to an email-account that can be accessed on your phone.

  2. open the attachmens from you email and store it on your phone (or SD card?)

  3. In the Store Store tap the More More icon, and see if you can select the locally saved app.

So for the app called "Files" go to the Files Detail Page.

Files App

see also this discussion

  • A few things. 1) You don't need an SD card, 8.1 can also install apps from built-in storage. 2) Some apps, like Files, have an .appxbundle extension, not .xap. 3) When I tried this, Store didn't recognise the files.appxbundle file, even though it was on my phone in the Downloads folder. – Indrek Dec 19 '14 at 9:04

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