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How to Change or Disable the Lock Screen Timeout on Windows 10

By default, Windows 10 lock screen automatically turns off after you've been inactive for over a minute. This is called a timeout, and it’s implemented to save power and battery life, however, some users may be looking to spend more or even less time with the lock screen active

This is something that can be changed quite easily and quickly. All you have to do is read our article and follow the steps described below. You'll be able to modify or disable the lock screen timeout within minutes!

Hello lock screen on windows 10

What is the lock screen timeout?

In Windows 10, the lock screen has become quite advanced and a lot more useful as well. It displays the current time and date, all available local users, and even gives you the option to use Cortana and other Windows utilities. You may also choose to restart or shut down your device straight from the lock screen itself.

With more functionality, more people are looking to extend the amount of time the lock screen remains visible even while the computer is inactive. This can be used to have access to Cortana, display the time and date with the beautiful background images, or simply liven up the atmosphere instead of showing a black screen.

To be able to achieve this, you need to configure the lock screen timeout. By doing that, you’re able to give instructions to Windows 10 to not turn your screen off. It’ll stay shown even if the device is on the lock screen and doesn’t receive input for an extended amount of time.

Guide to change or disable the lock screen timeout

There are multiple ways to go about changing or disabling the lock screen timeout in Windows 10. All of these steps are easy to follow, however, some of them require a bit more time than the others. Do what feels good for you — you can always return to our article and try something else in the future.

Tip: All of these methods can be performed by anybody, as our guides are easy to follow and don’t require any previous Windows 10 experience. If you know anyone who’s experiencing issues with their system, don’t forget to recommend us!

Now, let’s start learning about disabling or modifying the lock screen timeout using a Windows 10 operating system.

Method 1: Manually make changes to the Registry and modify the lock screen timeout

The very first thing we recommend trying is making changes to the Registry. Here’s where you can find Windows’ more advanced settings, often not available elsewhere.

While the Registry seems intimidating at first, it’s actually quite simple to navigate. All you have to keep in mind is to not make any un-instructed changes. A poorly configured Registry may lead to errors on your device!

Warning: Before beginning this guide, we recommend creating a backup of your Registry. If you’re not sure how to create and import Registry backups, watch “Registry Backup, Restore, Import And Export” from Windows Ninja.

Let’s get started!

  1. Press the Windows + R keys on your keyboard at the same time to bring up the Run application. Here, simply type in “Regedit” and click OK.
    Registry Editor
  2. Navigate the Registry Editor using the arrow icons next to each folder name on the left-side panel. Navigate to the following registry key: HKEYLOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Power\PowerSettings\7516b95f-f776-4464-8c53-06167f40cc99\8EC4B3A5-6868-48c2-BE75-4F3044BE88A7
  3. Double-click on the “Attributes” key seen in the right side of the window.
  4. Change the value data to 2, then click the OK button. Make sure not to make any other changes!
    How to change value data
  5. Now, you should be able to see the lock screen timeout option when making changes to your Power Options (jump to Method 4).

Method 2: Download the automatic Registry changes

Not confident in using the Registry yourself? No problem! You can simply apply a one-click solution to make the modifications automatically without having to worry about messing something up.

  1. Click here to download the “Lock Screen Timeout Hacks” file from HowTo Geek. This is a .zip file, meaning that you might need to download an application such as WinRAR or 7-Zip to access the contents.
  2. Open the file you just downloaded.
    lock zip
  3. Locate “Add Lock Screen Timeout Setting to Power Options” and double-click on it to launch it.
    Lock screen timeout
  4. Now, you should be able to see the lock screen timeout option when making changes to your Power Options (jump to Method 4).

Method 3: Enter a command using Command Prompt to change the lock screen timeout

Another powerful tool used to make more advanced changes and personalization to your device is the Command Prompt. It allows you to directly give commands to your computer via a code language. We can use this to make changes to the Power Options, allowing you to modify the lock screen timeout.

  1. Press the Windows + R keys on your keyboard to open up the Run utility. Type in “cmd” and press Ctrl + Shift + Enter to launch the Command Prompt with administrative permissions.
    command prompt
  2. When the Command Prompt launches, input the following command and press Enterpowercfg.exe /SETACVALUEINDEX SCHEME_CURRENT SUB_VIDEO VIDEOCONLOCK 60.

Make sure to change “60” to the amount of time you want your lock screen to stay active for. This time is in seconds, meaning that by leaving it default, you’ll have 60 seconds before the lock screen goes into a timeout.

  1. Next, input the following command and press Enter once again: powercfg.exe /SETACTIVE SCHEME_CURRENT
  2. Close the Command Prompt. You should be able to notice that the lock screen timeout has changed.

Method 4: Use the Power Options to change the lock screen timeout

After enabling the setting with either Method 1 or Method 2, you’ll be able to use the Power Options to modify the lock screen timeout. This is what you need to do:

  1. Press the Windows + R keys using your keyboard to bring up the Run utility, then type in “control” and click the OK button. This is going to open the Control Panel.
    control
  2. Make sure that your view mode is set to Category. This will allow you to see grouped settings, making navigation easier.
    view by category
  3. Next, click on the Hardware and Sound heading.
    Hardware Sound
  4. You should see another list of groups full of different settings. What you need to click on is the Power Options menu.
    Power option icon on windows
  5. Click on the “Change plan settings” link next to whichever plan you’re using. There’s no need to change your actual plan — all we’ll do is simply modify it.
    How to change power plan settings on Windows
  6. Click on the “Change advanced power settings” link at the bottom of the page. A new window should pop up.
    advanced power options
  7. Scroll down until you see Display, then click on the plus icon to expand the section.
  8. Change “Console lock display off timeout” to the number of minutes you want before your lock screen goes into a timeout. If you don’t see this setting, make sure to follow the steps in either Method 1 or Method 2.
    console lock settings
  9. Click the Apply button, then close the window by clicking OK.
  10. You should be able to see that your lock screen timeout has been increased or decreased.

We hope that this article was able to help you learn how you can change the lock screen time out, or disable it entirely. Get more control over your device and enjoy your lock screen active for exactly as much time as you want it to!

Are you interested in learning more about Windows 10? Do you need help fixing any other Windows 10 errors and issues? You can browse our dedicated blog section and find articles about everything related to Microsoft’s groundbreaking operating system. Click here to proceed. 

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