Microsoft is currently preparing the release of its Windows 8 operating system. If you have followed the news, you may notice that it will ship with a new start page that is fundamentally different from what you have been working with before.
One additional change is the integration of the Microsoft Account in the operating system. Microsoft Account is the new name for your Windows Live login. Windows 8 users can either sign in locally into the operating system or use their Microsoft Account to do so. If they select the latter, they benefit from cloud synchronization features that allow them to use their preferences and settings on all systems running Windows 8, even if they have never worked with a particular computer before.
Changes are not only coming to the SkyDrive or Hotmail sign in screens, but also to the account security as well.
Windows Live users previously were allowed to use passwords that had to have a minimum length of six characters. This has now been changed to a minimum length of eight characters which improves the security of the account.
Keep in mind that this does not affect existing passwords, but only new users who sign up for the first time and users who want to change their Microsoft Account password.
The change is currently underway and depending on your location in the world you may still see the old log in screens on login.live.com and not the new screens and account requirements. It is likely that the update is currently being tested and rolled out at a later time. It is almost certain that Microsoft will update the pages before the October release of the Windows 8 operating system.
So, basically you will see new sign in pages for Windows Live services like Hotmail or SkyDrive, and improved password rules when you change passwords or create a new account.