Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

Is there a way to make Windows XP stay logged in even after the user logs off? Right now the PCs log in at start up and we're using WinOFF to shut down the computer after X minutes of inactivity.

The problem is that WinOFF does not work when the user logs off and stays in the "Select user login" screen.

I'm thinking a possible solution would be to make the computer log back in as the default user after Y minutes of inactivity. How can I make it so that Windows XP logs in automatically after the user logs off?

share|improve this question
Not the same question, but see my answer here: [][1] [1]: – Patrick S. Aug 30 '12 at 0:30
up vote 3 down vote accepted

A better solution would be to have WinOFF run in the system domain instead of in the user domain. That way, it is run independent of who is or is not logged in.

Where do you have WinOFF autorunning? In the Startup folder? In the Run key? Wherever it is, take it out and put it in HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run.

Another option is to create a Windows service to run it (make sure to set its type as interactive and start as auto). For example:

sc create WinOff binpath= c:\…\winoff.exe start= auto type= own type= interact displayname= "Auto WinOff"
sc description WinOff "Run WinOff in the system domain to automatically shut down whether any users are logged in or not."
share|improve this answer
Are you sure that making it run as SYSTEM will work? I tried changing the registry as you mentioned but WinOFF still does not seem to work. If you're sure it works, maybe I did something wrong. – VEC Aug 31 '12 at 0:54
Programs that are auto-run via user locations (the user’s copy of the Startup folder or the user’s Run key) will cause them to run when the user logs in. Programs that are auto-run via system locations (the global Startup folder or the HKLM Run key) are run on boot. If it’s not working for some reason, you can do some testing to find out why, but it may be easier to just install it as a service which should guarantee that it runs even before anyone logs in. – Synetech Aug 31 '12 at 13:34
Ok I can get it to run as a service but it doesn't save any of the settings like Autostart at start up without inputting the password each time. Or shutdown after X minutes. It's all reset to default. – VEC Sep 5 '12 at 21:15
Why do you have to save the setting each time? You should be able to run it with admin privileges once, configure it, and have it run with those settings. What may be happening however is that if it is saving the settings to the HKCU branch (the user-specific registry branch), then when it runs in the system domain, it is finding that there are no settings and prompting you to run it. In that case, you should be able to run it and configure it by “running” it by starting the service manually after logging in (e.g. net start WinOff) and configuring it then. – Synetech Sep 6 '12 at 1:43
On initial log on, the password prompt comes up for the admin panel. If I leave it alone, it will still shut off after X minutes of inactivity. So it is kinda working as a service. However it still does not work when I log off and when I log back in, the WinOFF service isn't working anymore. I've set the inactivity to 1 minute for testing and it just won't shut off after logging off and logging back in but it does on initial log on. – VEC Sep 6 '12 at 17:44

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .