First, a few notes: Setting an automatic login is best when you’re not too concerned about security — for example, your desktop computer at home where you don’t store any confidential information and/or use security precautions like password managers for signing onto websites. It’s definitely not a good idea to set up auto login on a laptop, since it’s more easily vulnerable to loss or theft. Also, if you have more than one user account on the computer, the auto login feature can be more of a hassle for other people because they’ll have to log you off and log on to their accounts each time.
But if your computer is in a secure location and you’re the only one using it, auto login can be very convenient.
Windows XP, Vista and 7
- Click Start then type in the search box netplwiz and hit Enter. (On Windows XP, you may instead need to go to Start, then Run… and enter control userpasswords2 instead of “netplwiz”)
- In the Advanced User Accounts window that opens, uncheck the box next to “Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer.” Hit Enter or click OK
- A new dialog box will prompt you to enter the username and password (twice) for the account to automatically log into every time you start Windows. Once you’ve done this, hit OK, then OK again to complete the process.
To undo this process, go back to Start and type in “netplwiz” then re-check the option for requiring a user name and password.
Mac OS X
Configuring your Mac to log in automatically when it starts up is very simple.
- Open System Preferences and click Users & Groups
- Click the Login Options button on the bottom of the left pane.
- Click the dropdown box next to Automatic login to select the account to automatically log into.
- Enter the password when prompted and hit OK