Microsoft KB Archive/253370
How to Enable Automatic Logon in Windows 2000
The information in this article applies to:
- Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional
Windows allows you to automate the logon process by storing your password and other pertinent information in the Registry database.
This feature allows other users to start your computer and use the account you establish to automatically logon.
IMPORTANT: Although enabling autologon can make it more convenient to use Windows 2000, use of this feature is a security risk.
Setting a computer for autologon means that anyone who can physically obtain access to the computer can gain access to all of the computer contents, potentially including any network or networks it is connected to. A second risk is that enabling autologon causes the password to be stored in the registry, in plaintext. The specific registry key that stores this value is remotely readable by the Authenticated Users group.
As a result, this setting is only appropriate for cases in which the computer is physically secured, and steps have been taken to ensure that untrusted users cannot remotely access the registry.
Use the Registry Editor (Regedt32.exe) to add your logon information, as follows:
WARNING: Using Registry Editor incorrectly can cause serious, system-wide problems that may require you to reinstall Windows NT to correct them. Microsoft cannot guarantee that any problems resulting from the use of Registry Editor can be solved. Use this tool at your own risk.
Start REGEDT32.EXE and locate the following Registry subkey:
- Using your account name and password, double-click the DefaultUserName entry, type your user name, and the click OK. Double-click the DefaultPassword entry, type your password, and then click OK.
NOTE: The DefaultPassword value may not exist. If it doesn't, from the Edit menu, choose Add Value. In the Value Name field, type: "DefaultPassword" (without the quotation marks). Select REG_SZ for the Data Type. In the String field, type your password. Save your changes.
Also, if no DefaultPassword string is specified, Windows NT automatically changes the value of the AutoAdminLogon key from 1 (true) to 0 (false), thus disabling the AutoAdminLogon feature.
- From the Edit menu, choose Add Value. Enter AutoAdminLogon in the Value Name field. Select REG_SZ for the Data Type. Enter 1 in the String field. Save your changes.
- Exit REGEDT32.
- Click Start, click Shutdown, and then click OK. Turn off your computer.
- Restart your computer and Windows NT. You should be able to logon automatically.
NOTE: To bypass the AutoAdminLogon process, and to logon on as a different user, hold down the SHIFT key after a logoff or after a Windows NT restart.
Note that this only applies to the first logon. To enforce this setting for subsequent logoffs, the administrator needs to set:
Additional query words: regedit auto login autologon automated
Issue type : kbinfo
Technology : kbwin2000Search kbwin2000ProSearch kbwin2000Pro
Last Reviewed: January 3, 2001