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Windows 7 - How to Automatically Lock Your Computer

Keeping your computer secure in a public place is a must. While you can lock your computer at any time by pressing the Windows Key and "L" before you leave the computer, there may be some times when you forget to do it. If you want to ensure that your computer is safe from any unwanted visitors when you're not present, you can configure it to lock automatically after a specified amount of time. When you return to the computer, you'll need to enter your login password again to continue work. Configuring Windows 7 to do this is very easy via the screen saver options.

Right-click anywhere on an unoccupied area of your desktop and click "Personalize." In the bottom right-hand corner, click on the "Screen Saver" icon to bring up the Screen Saver Settings window.

You can select any screen saver you want. Be aware, however, that changing your Windows 7 desktop theme often changes the screen saver as well. However, it will not change any of the other settings. If you prefer not to use a screen saver, you can do so and still have your computer automatically lock when you go away from it. If you don't like screen savers, simply choose "None" from the dropdown box.

In the box beside "Wait," choose how long you want your computer to remain unattended before it automatically logs off. The minimum you can choose is one minute, which you'll probably find optimal. Ensure that you check the box beside "On resume, display logon screen." Click "OK."

When the screen saver comes on, your computer will be locked automatically. When you move the mouse, the screen saver will close and you'll be taken back to the logon screen. If you did not select any screensaver, the computer will just go straight to the logon screen after the specified waiting time has passed.


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