Yes, you read that right. You CAN skip the Microsoft Account settings in Windows 11 Home Out-of-Box Experience (OOBE). This has been tested on 2 WiFi computers and one Ethernet-connected VM.
Here’s how you do it:
Start the OOBE and make sure you have an Internet connection (I haven’t found a way around this part yet). Go through the first few screens for language options and such.
When you get to the Microsoft Account screen, hit Shift-F10 to open a command prompt.
If you’re on wireless, use this command: netsh wlan disconnect <Enter>
Type exit and hit <Enter>.
Hit the back arrow at the top. You should now be prompted with a basic local user account creation screen.
If you’re on a wired connection, use this command first: netsh interface show interface <Enter>
Find the name of the Ethernet adapter and substitute it in the command below where it says Ethernet. Keep the quotes – it’s used for parsing spaces in case it has a long name.
netsh interface set interface name=”Ethernet” admin=DISABLED <Enter>
Hit back. You should get the same result.
When you get into Windows, you may have to reconnect manually. If you want to do this easily for LAN, go to Settings and Network and use the Troubleshooting options to re-enable it, or else go to Device Manager and enable the device. For WLAN, just use the regular wireless icon beside the clock.