Accounts Automatically Lock Computer after Inactivity in Windows 11


  • Staff
Lock_screen_banner.png

This tutorial will show you how to enable or disable automatically lock computer after specified seconds of inactivity for all users in Windows 10 and Windows 11.

When you lock the computer, it protects the computer from unauthorized use when you need to step away from the PC, and don't want to sign out or shut down causing everything open to be closed.

When you lock the computer, you will be taken to the lock screen by default to dismiss and sign in when ready to continue where you left off. Other users can still sign in to their accounts from the sign-in screen.

The Interactive logon: Machine inactivity limit security policy setting allows you to specify an amount in seconds of user inactivity to wait before Windows will automatically lock the computer.


You must be signed in as an administrator to enable or disable automatically lock computer after inactivity.


If your device has a presence sensor, then you can also turn on/off Walk away lock instead that turns off the display and automatically locks the computer when you walk away for more than a set amount of seconds.

Presence detection settings location will vary per device brand and model.




Contents

  • Option One: Enable or Disable Automatically Lock Computer after Inactivity in Local Security Policy
  • Option Two: Enable or Disable Automatically Lock Computer after Inactivity in Registry Editor




Option One

Enable or Disable Automatically Lock Computer after Inactivity in Local Security Policy


Local Security Policy is only available in the Windows 11 Pro, Enterprise, and Education editions.

All editions can use Option Two to set the same policy.


1 Open Local Security Policy (secpol.msc).

2 Double click/tap on Local Policies in the left pane to expand, and click/tap on Security Options to open it. (see screenshot below)

Automatically_lock_computer_after_inactivity_secpol-1.png

3 In the right pane of Security Options, double click/tap on the Interactive logon: Machine inactivity limit policy to open its properties. (see screenshot above)

4 Enter a number between 0 to 599940 for how many seconds of inactivity you want to automatically lock computer after, and click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)

The default is 0 (zero) seconds to not automatically lock the computer.


Automatically_lock_computer_after_inactivity_secpol-2.png

5 Close the Local Security Policy window.

6 Restart the computer to apply.




Option Two

Enable or Disable Automatically Lock Computer after Inactivity in Registry Editor


1 Open Registry Editor (regedit.exe).

2 Navigate to the registry key below in the left pane of Registry Editor. (see screenshot below)

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System

Automatically_lock_computer_after_inactivity_regedit-1.png

3 In the right pane of the System key, double click/tap on the InactivityTimeoutSecs DWORD to modify it. (see screenshot above)

If you do not have a InactivityTimeoutSecs DWORD, right click or press and hold on an empty space in the right pane of the System key, click/tap on New, click/tap on DWORD (32-bit) Value, type InactivityTimeoutSecs for the name, and press Enter.


4 Select (dot) Decimal, enter a number between 0 to 599940 for how many seconds of inactivity you want to automatically lock computer after, and click/tap on OK. (see screenshot below)

The default is 0 (zero) seconds to not automatically lock the computer.


Automatically_lock_computer_after_inactivity_regedit-2.png

5 Close Registry Editor.

6 Restart the computer to apply.


That's it,
Shawn Brink


 

Attachments

  • Lock_sceen.png
    Lock_sceen.png
    1.3 KB · Views: 153
Last edited:
Thank you, very useful,
Microsoft should add this in Windows settings UI too IMO so that more people can be aware of this feature.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
Would this be a better way that using the screensaver setting under lock screen>show sign in screen after x minutes? This can be set to 1 minute minimum.
I would expect yes if a user didn’t wish to use a screensaver.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 64bit
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    PC Specialist Optimus VII V17-960 Gaming Laptop.
    CPU
    6th Gen Intel Core i7-6700HQ Quad Core processor.
    Memory
    16GB HyperX IMPACT 1600MHz SODIMM DDR3 (2 x 8GB)
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVIDIA® GeForce® GTX 960M - 2.0GB DDR5 Video RAM - DirectX® 12
    Sound Card
    Intel 2 Channel High Def. Audio + SoundBlaster™ Cinema 2 & Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Optimus Series: 17.3" Matte Full HD IPS LED Widescreen (1920x1080)
    Screen Resolution
    Full HD IPS display (1920 x 1080).
    Hard Drives
    4TB SSD (internal).
    1x 1TB & 1x 5TB external HDDs.
    Cooling
    STANDARD THERMAL PASTE FOR SUFFICIENT COOLING
    Keyboard
    Logitech K800 wireless keyboard
    Mouse
    Logitech M705 wireless mouse
    Internet Speed
    Upto 100Mbps
    Browser
    Edge.
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender & MalwareBytes pro.
Check out this one as well. For me... this is the best option...



One click turns off display and locks computer.

W10 or W11
Image1.png
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Home ♦♦♦22631.3235 ♦♦♦♦♦♦♦23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® [May 2020]
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
    Motherboard
    Asus Pro WS X570-ACE (BIOS 4702)
    Memory
    G.Skill (F4-3200C14D-16GTZKW)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2070 (08G-P4-2171-KR)
    Sound Card
    Realtek ALC1220P / ALC S1220A
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell U3011 30"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1600
    Hard Drives
    2x Samsung 860 EVO 500GB,
    WD 4TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    WD 8TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    DRW-24B1ST CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling 750W Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Cooler Master ATCS 840 Tower
    Cooling
    CM Hyper 212 EVO (push/pull)
    Keyboard
    Ducky DK9008 Shine II Blue LED
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-100
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox (latest)
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Internet Security
    Other Info
    Speakers: Klipsch Pro Media 2.1
  • Operating System
    Windows XP Pro 32bit w/SP3
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® (not in use)
    CPU
    AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (OC'd @ 3.2Ghz)
    Motherboard
    ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wireless Edition
    Memory
    TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX (2 x 1GB, DDR2 800)
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA 256-P2-N758-TR GeForce 8600GT SSC
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ViewSonic G90FB Black 19" Professional (CRT)
    Screen Resolution
    up to 2048 x 1536
    Hard Drives
    WD 36GB 10,000rpm Raptor SATA
    Seagate 80GB 7200rpm SATA
    Lite-On LTR-52246S CD/RW
    Lite-On LH-18A1P CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Generic Beige case, 80mm fans
    Cooling
    ZALMAN 9500A 92mm CPU Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-BT96a
    Keyboard
    Logitech Classic Keybooard 200
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox 3.x ??
    Antivirus
    Symantec (Norton)
    Other Info
    Still assembled, still runs. Haven't turned it on for 13 years?

    http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?183088-5000-B-E-on-M2N32-SLI-Dlx-Overclocked&p=2891724#post2891724




Same. It's one stop shopping.
When I leave the computer... I click that. Does everything in one click. :cool:


On a side note... now that I have my compass, I found that my street faces NE by E¼E :D
I couldn't sleep at night, not knowing that.


Compass 1.jpg
 
Last edited:

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Home ♦♦♦22631.3235 ♦♦♦♦♦♦♦23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® [May 2020]
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
    Motherboard
    Asus Pro WS X570-ACE (BIOS 4702)
    Memory
    G.Skill (F4-3200C14D-16GTZKW)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2070 (08G-P4-2171-KR)
    Sound Card
    Realtek ALC1220P / ALC S1220A
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell U3011 30"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1600
    Hard Drives
    2x Samsung 860 EVO 500GB,
    WD 4TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    WD 8TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    DRW-24B1ST CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling 750W Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Cooler Master ATCS 840 Tower
    Cooling
    CM Hyper 212 EVO (push/pull)
    Keyboard
    Ducky DK9008 Shine II Blue LED
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-100
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox (latest)
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Internet Security
    Other Info
    Speakers: Klipsch Pro Media 2.1
  • Operating System
    Windows XP Pro 32bit w/SP3
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® (not in use)
    CPU
    AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (OC'd @ 3.2Ghz)
    Motherboard
    ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wireless Edition
    Memory
    TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX (2 x 1GB, DDR2 800)
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA 256-P2-N758-TR GeForce 8600GT SSC
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ViewSonic G90FB Black 19" Professional (CRT)
    Screen Resolution
    up to 2048 x 1536
    Hard Drives
    WD 36GB 10,000rpm Raptor SATA
    Seagate 80GB 7200rpm SATA
    Lite-On LTR-52246S CD/RW
    Lite-On LH-18A1P CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Generic Beige case, 80mm fans
    Cooling
    ZALMAN 9500A 92mm CPU Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-BT96a
    Keyboard
    Logitech Classic Keybooard 200
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox 3.x ??
    Antivirus
    Symantec (Norton)
    Other Info
    Still assembled, still runs. Haven't turned it on for 13 years?

    http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?183088-5000-B-E-on-M2N32-SLI-Dlx-Overclocked&p=2891724#post2891724
right-click context menu option is good too, although I prefer Win + L shortcut since it exists in Windows by default and I kinda developed muscle memory for it whenever I wanna leave my desk :-) my monitor turns off automatically shortly after that

in case I forget to do that, what this post describes is great security feature, performs it automatically for me. almost all mobile phones have this feature turned on by default, makes sense to have it turned on on Windows too.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11
When I leave the computer... I click that.
To be honest, I rarely use it..., it's just there, bundled in with my tweaks script.
I live alone..., haven't seen another human being in 17 years!!! :p
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 10/11
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    ASUS ROG Strix
  • Operating System
    Windows 11
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    ASUS VivoBook
To be honest, I rarely use it..., it's just there, bundled in with my tweaks script.
I live alone..., haven't seen another human being in 17 years!!! :p


Same here, but my paranoia won't let me leave the house without locking the computer.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Home ♦♦♦22631.3235 ♦♦♦♦♦♦♦23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® [May 2020]
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
    Motherboard
    Asus Pro WS X570-ACE (BIOS 4702)
    Memory
    G.Skill (F4-3200C14D-16GTZKW)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2070 (08G-P4-2171-KR)
    Sound Card
    Realtek ALC1220P / ALC S1220A
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell U3011 30"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1600
    Hard Drives
    2x Samsung 860 EVO 500GB,
    WD 4TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    WD 8TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    DRW-24B1ST CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling 750W Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Cooler Master ATCS 840 Tower
    Cooling
    CM Hyper 212 EVO (push/pull)
    Keyboard
    Ducky DK9008 Shine II Blue LED
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-100
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox (latest)
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Internet Security
    Other Info
    Speakers: Klipsch Pro Media 2.1
  • Operating System
    Windows XP Pro 32bit w/SP3
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® (not in use)
    CPU
    AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (OC'd @ 3.2Ghz)
    Motherboard
    ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wireless Edition
    Memory
    TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX (2 x 1GB, DDR2 800)
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA 256-P2-N758-TR GeForce 8600GT SSC
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ViewSonic G90FB Black 19" Professional (CRT)
    Screen Resolution
    up to 2048 x 1536
    Hard Drives
    WD 36GB 10,000rpm Raptor SATA
    Seagate 80GB 7200rpm SATA
    Lite-On LTR-52246S CD/RW
    Lite-On LH-18A1P CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Generic Beige case, 80mm fans
    Cooling
    ZALMAN 9500A 92mm CPU Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-BT96a
    Keyboard
    Logitech Classic Keybooard 200
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox 3.x ??
    Antivirus
    Symantec (Norton)
    Other Info
    Still assembled, still runs. Haven't turned it on for 13 years?

    http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?183088-5000-B-E-on-M2N32-SLI-Dlx-Overclocked&p=2891724#post2891724

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro for Workstations
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Custom self build
    CPU
    Intel i7-8700K 5 GHz
    Motherboard
    ASUS ROG Maximus XI Formula Z390
    Memory
    64 GB (4x16GB) G.SKILL TridentZ RGB DDR4 3600 MHz (F4-3600C18D-32GTZR)
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS ROG-STRIX-GTX1080TI-O11G-GAMING (11GB GDDR5X)
    Sound Card
    Integrated Digital Audio (S/PDIF)
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung Odyssey G75 27"
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    4TB Samsung 990 PRO M.2,
    8TB WD MyCloudEX2Ultra NAS
    PSU
    Seasonic Prime Titanium 850W
    Case
    Thermaltake Core P3 wall mounted
    Cooling
    Corsair Hydro H115i
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless K800
    Mouse
    Logitech MX Master 3
    Internet Speed
    1 Gbps Download and 35 Mbps Upload
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Microsoft Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    Logitech Z625 speaker system,
    Logitech BRIO 4K Pro webcam,
    HP Color LaserJet Pro MFP M477fdn,
    APC SMART-UPS RT 1000 XL - SURT1000XLI,
    Galaxy S23 Plus phone
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    HP Spectre x360 2in1 14-eu0098nr (2024)
    CPU
    Intel Core Ultra 7 155H 4.8 GHz
    Memory
    16 GB LPDDR5x-7467 MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    Integrated Intel Arc
    Sound Card
    Poly Studio
    Monitor(s) Displays
    14" 2.8K OLED multitouch
    Screen Resolution
    2880 x 1800
    Hard Drives
    2 TB PCIe NVMe M.2 SSD
    Internet Speed
    Intel Wi-Fi 7 BE200 (2x2) and Bluetooth 5.4
    Browser
    Chrome and Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender and Malwarebytes Premium
Back
Top Bottom