Thursday, January 25, 2018

How to Automatically Login to an Account on Windows 10

To protect files and account credentials using unique and complex passwords to log into devices is always recommended. However, there are times when it is also okay to allow windows to automatically login. One example would be an older device that was wiped of all personal files and then re-purposed to be used by young children. 

The following circumstances should be considered before enabling a Windows 10 device to automatically login to a user account:
  • When the device is only being used by one person OR the account being logged into is not an administrative account. This is important because allowing access to an admin account can provide access to documents stored in another user profile.
  • The user account does not store any personal data.
  • Account credentials and passwords are not saved in any of the web browsers. In the wrong hands, this could allow access to accounts with linked credit cards.
Newer versions of Windows have made it more difficult to find the setting required to enable the auto-login feature. Luckily this feature can be enabled in minutes.

How to Automatically Login to an Account on Windows 10

NOTE:  Please consider implementing an automatic logon very sparingly as it does remove the security provided by having a password attached to user profiles.

Use these steps to enable the auto-login feature for a user account:
  • First, log into the device with any user account.
  • Open a command window by clicking in search and typing "cmd".
  • In the command window, type "control userpasswords2".

  • This will bring up the User Accounts window.
  • Click on the name of the user account to automatically log into from those accounts listed.

  • Uncheck the box next to "User must enter a user name and password to use this computer".

  • Click the "Apply" and "Ok" button to save the settings and close the window.
  • Reboot the device to apply the settings.
  • Once the device reboots, it should automatically log into the user account selected and take you straight to the desktop.
While allowing an account to automatically login when a device boots or is taken out of sleep mode should be used sparingly, there are times when it can be useful. Accessing the setting to allow automatic logins, however, is not something easily found. Luckily, once you know how to access the correct user account setting, enabling this feature is quick and can be completed in a matter of minutes.

As always, security is important but every situation is unique. If the added security provided by account passwords is not needed, knowing how to enable auto-login is key!

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