This article describes how to configure Windows to automate the logon process by storing your password and other pertinent information in the registry database. This feature allows other users to start your computer and use the account you establish to automatically log on.
If you enable autologon, it is more convenient to use Windows. However, this feature may pose a security risk. If you set a computer for autologon, anyone who can physically obtain access to the computer can gain access to all of the computer contents, including any network or networks it is connected to.
In addition, when autologon is enabled, the password is stored in the registry in plain text. The specific registry key that stores this value is remotely readable by the Authenticated Users group. This setting is recommended only for cases in which the computer is physically secured and in which steps have been taken to make sure that untrusted users cannot remotely access the registry.
Use Registry Editor (Regedt32.exe) to enable automatic logonImportant
This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
How to back up and restore the registry in Windows
To enable automatic logon, follow these steps:
- Start Regedt32.exe, and then locate the following registry subkey:
- Using your account name and password, double-click the DefaultUserName entry, type your user name, and then click OK.
- Double-click the DefaultDomainName entry, type the domain name, and then click OK.
- Double-click the DefaultPassword entry, type your password, and then click OK.
Note If the DefaultPassword value does not exist, follow these steps:
Also, if no DefaultPassword string is specified, Windows
automatically changes the value of the AutoAdminLogon key from 1 (true)
to 0 (false), which disables the AutoAdminLogon feature.
- Click Add Value on
the Edit menu.
- In the Value Name box, type
DefaultPassword, and then click REG_SZ for
the Data Type
- Type your password in the String box, and then save your
- Click Add Value on the Edit menu, enter AutoAdminLogon in the
Value Name box, and then click REG_SZ for the Data Type.
- Type 1 in the
String box, and then save your changes.
- Quit Regedt32.
- Click Start, click Shutdown, and then click OK to turn off your computer.
- Restart your computer and Windows. You are now able to log on
: To bypass the AutoAdminLogon process, and to log on as a different
user, hold down the SHIFT key after you log off or after Windows