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I would like to power up my laptop and have it automatically boot up to my one account. I can achieve this by not having a password set on that account. This Works great when I am home alone. The machine completely boots up and is ready for use without any intervention (and I can go and grab a coffee!).

The problem is that without a password I have lost security when I am travelling with the laptop, and there are problems accessing my local network.

On the other hand, with a password, boot-up is in to stages: boot to the login screen, and then log in to the account. This requires an intervention in the middle of booting up.

Is it possible to have the best of both of both worlds: Power up, auto-login to my password-protected account, but go to a locked state, that requires my password to unlock? How can I achieve this?

I am using Windows 7 home premium on an Dell XPS M1710.

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3 Answers

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Open the Run dialog and type:

control userpasswords2

This will bring up the user accounts dialog. Untick the "Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer" checkbox and hit Apply.

You'll be asked for the username/password for the user account to auto-login to on windows startup.

This will allow you to boot the laptop up and have it ready to use, but pressing Win+L or whatever method to lock the workstation will require a password.

It just means that an attacker would need to reboot the machine to get into it.

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To your solution I created a .bat file containing the command "rundll32.exe user32.dll,LockWorkStation" and scheduled it to run at login. (The command appeared as an answer to "superuser.com/questions/21179/command-line-cmd-command-to-lock-a-windows-machin‌​e" ). Now it does exactly what I need. Thanks. –  Bill Rodman Sep 25 '10 at 14:38
    
@Bill: Never use rundll32 for that. –  grawity Sep 25 '10 at 17:17
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Hibernate instead if shutting down and you'll effectively get what you want.

To enable hibernation, open the console and type powercfg /hibernate on .

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More and more people need to quit shutting off their machine and either use sleep or logoff. –  surfasb Feb 16 '11 at 8:35
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Launch regedit and navigate to:
HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System.

Double-click on dontdisplaylastusername and change its value to zero (if it is not there, create it as REG_DWORD). This item determines whether a user name appears in the Log On to Windows dialog box.

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