Friday, May 29, 2009

How to lock your PC automatically while you step out?

While in office you may move around to different desks and cubicles. Most of the time you may think you will return to your desk in a minute or two but end up only after an hour or so. In the mean time your PC and data may be at risk if you have not locked your computer. So it’s better to set up an automatic lock on your computer after few minutes of inactivity.

First, what is the shortcut to lock the computer?

I have seen many people fighting hard to lock the computer as they first press ‘alt + ctrl + del’ and then they click ‘Lock this computer’. But windows key combination is a much simpler keyboard shortcut, just press ‘Windows Key + L’ to lock your computer. (Learn how to increase efficiency with keyboard shortcuts)

How to set up the computer to lock automatically?

If you don’t have the habit of locking your PC manually then I seriously advise you to follow this.

Windows has password protect option in screen savers. If you have enabled that, the system would automatically lock itself as soon as the screen saver comes up. On resume, you will be asked for the password before you can enter.

1) Right click on the desktop -> Personalize -> Screen Saver.
2) If you are using Vista, check the box which says ‘On resume, display logon screen‘ or else in Windows XP this would be ‘On resume, password protect‘.

Password Protect With Screen Saver

3) Save and close. Next time you move out of your PC it will lock itself after the time you have mentioned in the screen saver settings.

Update: If you are not used to keyboard shortcuts, you can create a custom desktop shortcut to lock your PC

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