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Windows XP - Change the way users logon


Welcome to this Windows XP tutorial for changing the way users logon. You may want to do this if you need to join a network or want your available users hidden from external eyes.

Thinks To Note
  • Click the images to see a larger version
  • Yellow arrows or circles indicate where to look or click
  • Unless specified otherwise use the 'left' mouse button to click



Windows XP - Change the way users logon


Start Menu button displays the recently used programs and the start menu which shows available programs. Access to the control panel can be made from here.

With the Windows XP screen loaded to the desktop you will see a blue bar along the bottom and a blank screen usually blue which is the desktop and normally has a recycle bin icon on it.

From the lower left side of the screen click the Start Menu button which will pop up and produce a vertical menu as pictured left.

At the top of the screen you will see a small picture with a name next to it. With your mouse click this small picture.

Windows XP user accounts dialog box, you can see the profile pictures that can be changed

You will see the user account dialog box appear. At the top of this box you will see two buttons labelled 'Back' and 'Home'.

The box should look like the picture on the right.

Click on the button labelled 'Home'.

Windows XP user accounts dialog box, choose a task to add or remove users or change the way users logon to windows xp

You will see the box as on the left which shows a list of options and the existing users which in this case are 'User', 'Guest' and 'Example' as created in the previous tutorial.

From the menu under 'Pick a Task' click the option 'Change the way users logon or off'.

This will launch the next window

Windows XP user accounts dialog box, add and remove users, change passwords or profile pictures, change the way users logon or off

You will see two options which are both ticked by default.

The first option 'Use the welcome screen' allows all the users that are setup on the computer to be displayed when Windows starts and you can simple click the user enter any password which is configured and your account loads.

The 'Fast User Switching' feature allows you to logon to multiple different user accounts without logging off any of the accounts. Without fast user switching you would have to close all open programs and logoff before logging the next person on.

Windows XP user accounts dialog box, limit the account to limited user stops them changing important windows system settings

To the left you can see what the welcome screen looks like when it is turned on.

If you turn the welcome screen off, you will have to type you user name and password manually when the computer starts as pictured below.

Whilst this is more secure it will automatically turn off the fast user switching function too.

Windows XP user accounts dialog box, you can choose to be an administrator which allows change of Windows XP system settings

Pictured right is what the logon screen would look like with the welcome screen turned off.

You would have to enter a name in the 'Username' box and type your password, click 'Ok' and this would log you on.

This is how it works in a network environment.

Windows XP user accounts dialog box, limit the account to limited user stops them changing important windows system settings

Once you have ticked or unticked the logon options you will be taken back to the list of available options for managing the user you selected.

In the top right click the red box with the white X in it. This closes the user accounts box






Next tutorial - Change a user profile picture in Windows XP


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