How to set up & use Family Safety in Windows 8 to monitor your kids activities

Windows 8 is not just making PC easier to use, more interactive and social but it’s the most secure and safe computer operating system ever made. Microsoft is very much concerned about the security and safety of their customers and to make sure that they are safe both offline and online, so Microsoft keeps on introducing new security features in their products.

Family Safety in Windows 8 is a perfect example of Microsoft’s seriousness about the security and safety of its users. With Family Safety in Windows 8, the monitoring of child and other Standard user accounts is like never before. You can now get more detailed reports about the user activities and have more control over the user account.

Just activate the Family Safety option while creating your kid’s account on PC and you will start getting weekly reports of your Kid’s activities on PC. And don’t worry, setting up the Family Safety option requires just a click on check box and nothing else is required, no download of any additional files, installation wizards, or configuration files are required.

Set up Family Safety in Windows 8

We have earlier sen how to set up Family Safety in Windows 7. Now let’s check out how to set up Family Safety in Windows 8:

1. First of all you need to set up a new account. To apply Family Safety option, the account type must be a Standard User.

2. To set up a new account in Windows 8, go to all Control Panel items and click on User Accounts from the list of options available.

3. Now, you can either set up a Microsoft Account using your children’s email ID or you can set up a Local Account for your kid to access the Windows 8 PC.

4. Enter the details for the account like name, password etc. and click Next to move further.

5. Now, click the check box to enable Family Safety feature.

Set up Family Safety in Windows 8

6. The account is now ready to use with the default Family Safety settings and features.

You can also change the account safety preferences, if you are looking for more secure environment for your kid. Some of the features which can be used to do so are:

Web Filtering: you can monitor and restrict the web activities of your kid. It allows you to block websites, downloads and other offensive content available on the web. It also automatically enables the Safe Search option on Bing, Google and Yahoo search engines.

Time Limits: With this feature you can limit the PC usage time of your kid. You just need to set up the time limitations and it’s all done.

Windows Store and Games Restrictions: You can also decide the usage of Windows Store and Games for you kids. It allows you to control the types of app which your kid can download from Windows Store and Games which he/she will play depending on the game rating.

App Restrictions: It allows you to decide which apps and programs will be available for your kid to use on his account. You can restrict applications which are not of their use by un-checking them from the list of installed apps available there.

The activity reports will be generated separately for each account and you can check them by selecting that particular account and clicking on View Activity Reports option available inside it.

The fully functional Family Safety is available in Windows 8 Release Preview to test and use. If you are a parent, you might want to consider  using it.

See this short video from Microsoft on Family Safety in Windows 8 to understand it better.

Family Safety not working

Type Family Safety in start search and click on the result, to open the Family Safety applet in Control Panel. Click the Refresh button in the to refresh the Family Safety Filter. The Family Safety Filter refreshes its settings automatically periodically, but if you notice that web content isn’t being filtered the way you want to, you can refresh the Family Safety Filter manually.

Set the rating system in Microsoft Family safety as shown in the image below. You can let it be at its default value or you can select Classification Operations board and see if that helps.

Family Safety not working windows 8

Sometimes your security software may interfere with the smooth working of Family Safety. Disable it temporarily and se if that is the cause.

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Anand Khanse is the Admin of, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.