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Create a Guest Account 04

If you share your PC with others or let friends use it when they come to visit, you may find settings changed, files deleted, programs installed etc. when you next use it. With previous versions of Windows, I’ve used Windows Steady State, which provided a mode to allow access without setting complicated policies to protect your settings. Thankfully with Windows 7, Microsoft has made this level of protection much more readily accessible. Learn, in this guide how to set up a Guest account—available in all Windows 7 and 8 versions—for infrequent users of your PC.

Please note two things before getting started:

  1. You should not use a guest account if you have parental controls set on your children’s accounts
  2. You cannot use Guest mode in an Active Directory environment
    In other words, you probably wont be able to add a guest account if you use company hardware

Set up a Guest Account (Windows 7)

Skip to Windows 8 instructions

1. Click the Start button, type guest and click Turn guest account on or off

guest-account01

2. Click the Guest account icon

guest-account02
3. Click Turn On to enable the guest account.

Create a Guest Account 03

Use the Guest Account in Windows 7

1. Log off or Switch User.

2. Click the Guest account icon to log on:

Create a Guest Account 04

Set up a Guest Account (Windows 8)

1. Click the Start button, type guest and click Turn guest account on or off

guest-account03

2. Click the Guest account icon

guest-account04

3. Click Turn On to enable the guest account

Create a Guest Account 03

Use the Guest Account in Windows 8

1. Lock your PC (Windows Key + L) or restart and skip to step 3

2. Click the back arrow next to your account picture:

guest-account05

3. Click the Guest account icon to log on:

guest-account06

Sign out of the Guest Account in Windows 8

If this is the first time you’ve used more than one account in Windows 8, it might help to know how to sign out of the guest account. To sign out of the guest account, press the Windows key, right click the guest icon and click Sign out:

guest-account08

Restrictions of the Guest Account

The guest account is not permitted to make changes to your PC. The only files that are modified when the guest uses your PC are temporary profile files that are wiped out when the guest logs off.

A guest cannot:

Install a program:

Create a Guest Account 05

Remove a program:

Create a Guest Account 06

Modify files outside of the guest profile:

Create a Guest Account 07

The guest account is a great way to protect your computer from unwanted changes.



About Rich

Rich is the owner and creator of Windows Guides; he spends his time breaking things on his PC so he can write how-to guides to fix the problems he creates.

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Comments

  • http://richr.org/ Rich

    Do you let others use your PC? Is a guest account the solution you use or do you have a good alternative you’d like to share?

  • http://mintywhite.com/ Uvais

    its a very good and quick way to solve user settings related problems…normally i create new User acc & removed old one…and my pc becomes new :)


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