How do I change my Google Gmail password?
I read your note yesterday about how to update my Facebook account password (see: How to change your Facebook password) and want to change my Gmail password, but I can't figure it out: there's no way to do so within Gmail, as far as I can tell?
You're right that Google's Gmail service does make things a bit more tricky because Google uses a central account management system rather than having one per service. That is, if you change your password on Google, it'll change with Google Reader, Google Docs and everything else, not just Gmail.
So what makes it tricky is that you have to get to Google Accounts from Gmail.
Before we go, though, a quick reminder: use good, hard-to-guess passwords. Try to skip dictionary words, definitely skip people's names, and so on. As I said in the earlier blog entry, I like using the first letters of words in a memorably sentence, but there are lots of ways to come up with a good password. Perhaps there's a phrase that you particularly like? Take the famous question "Why climb Everest?". By itself, that's not bad, with the spaces, mixed capitalization and lower case and question mark, but we can tweak it further: replace the first space with the number 6 and the second with a 9 and now we have "Why6climb9Everest?". Solid! Let's go with that.
Okay, log in to Gmail and click on Settings. Look for the "Accounts and Import" tab:
Scroll way, way down to the very bottom and you'll see this useful link:
That's what you want. Click on "Google account settings" to switch to the Google Accounts interface. First up, you'll see a bunch of options that you probably didn't even know existed, including:
Surprise, click on "Change password":
Here's where you should be a tiny bit paranoid: if someone can guess the answer to your secret question, they can change your password without even knowing your current password. Yeah, an excellent reason to make sure you have obscure security questions!!
One cool thing is as you type in your password Google will show you how secure it is. I tried something (ahem) kind of like "Why6climb9Everest?" and got this:
Click on "Save" when you're ready and...
Done. Safe and secure. Now, log out of Gmail and log in again with your new, more secure password. Nicely done.
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