How to Setup Windows Vista and 7 as a Kiosk

Automatic login into a guest account are good for machines you wish to use in public environments (typically called “kiosks”), but you’ll want to take steps to ensure that a visitor can’t log in to a more privileged account.

setup kiosk windows

There are two ways for a user to skip the automatic login and log in to another user account:

  • Hold the Shift key while Windows is logging in.
  • Once Windows has logged in, log out by selecting Log Off from the Start menu or pressing Ctrl-Alt-Del and selecting Log Off.

To eliminate both of these backdoors, follow these steps:

1. Open the Registry Editor (type regedit)

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2. Expand the tree branches to the following registry entry:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Winlogon

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3. Create a new string value here by going to Edit > New > String Value, and name the new value IgnoreShiftOverride. Double-click the new value, type 1 for its value data, and click OK. (This disables the Shift key during the automatic login.)

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4. Next, create a new DWORD value in this same key by going to Edit > New > DWORD (32-bit) Value, and name the new value ForceAutoLogon. Double-click the new value, type 1 for its value data, and click OK. (This automatically logs back in if the user tries to log out.)

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5. Close the Registry Editor when you’re done. The change will take effect immediately.

To remove either or both of these restrictions, just delete the corresponding Registry values.

Ben Carigtan shows you how it’s done!

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Comments [7]

  1. SaraAThompson@hotmai says:

    Thanks for the shift override tip! Any idea on how to ignore CTRL-ALT-DEL in Windows 7? Our app is a kiosk app. I have enabled automatic login and custom user interface which all works great. I have also disabled all functionality available under CTRL-ALT-DEL. But I still get a blank windows screen with a Cancel button.

  2. Dennis says:

    My prob is I purchased a laptop that has kiosk on it and I need to get rid of it. It wasn't set up right as I went in as guest and added an administrator account. I physically deleted the user files for Kiosk but it still comes up as the default (w/o the correct password). I have to switch users to my admin account, then enter my password, but I would like to eliminate it completely. Thank you.

  3. Paul says:

    Dennis, u need to get rid of the DefaultUserName:

    1. Go to: [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESOFTWAREMicrosoftWindows NTCurrentVersionWinlogon]
    2. Delete the values: DefaultUserName, DefaultPassword

    Also, there's a tool called "Autologon.exe" (from sysinternals.com) that can enable/disable that option.

  4. [...] a specific project. Others use a guest or other limited account as the default login account to set up a public or kiosk computer either in a public place or even in their [...]

  5. [...] Posted by Aseem on Saturday, April 10th 2010    10Apr Cyber cafes, kiosks, and other public computers represent a security risk to your private information if you don’t take the steps to protect [...]

  6. Dharmansible says:

    How about a walk-through on locking the experience down as well? Restricting use to a single application or set of applications, restricting the ability to access parts of the file system, maybe restricting web use?

  7. Mariano says:

    Can I disable safe mode in W7? because i have one account with automatic login. A local hacker could start in safe mode, without a password.

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