Computers

Change the Windows 10 log-in screen background

You don't have to stare at the Windows logo every time you type in your password.

dsc0017.jpg
Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

You've probably noticed by now that Windows 10 actually has two log-in screens: The lock screen and the log-in screen. The lock screen is customizable, but the login screen -- where you type your password -- is not. You're stuck with a dark blue background and a shiny, light-throwing Windows logo.

Or are you?

Well, actually, you won't be when Windows 10's summer-slated Redstone update drops. In the Windows 10 Insider Preview Build 14291, Microsoft has added an option to show the lock screen background picture on the log-in screen.

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

If you're running Build 14291 or later, simply head over to the Settings menu and go to Personalization > Lock screen and scroll down until you see Show lock screen background picture on the sign-in screen. Toggle this setting to On.

This will only work if you're running Build 14291 or later. If you're running Build 10586 or later (but not 14291), you'll see the following option, which lets you choose the log-in screen background (the Windows logo) or a solid color (if you turn this option off):

Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

There's also another fix, but it's more complicated.

Warning: This "fix" does involve editing the Windows Registry, and misediting the Registry can cause your computer to stop functioning. So if you are not completely comfortable editing the Registry, I recommend sticking with the default Windows 10 log-in screen for now.

login-regedit.png
Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

1. Go to Start > All apps > Windows System > Run. Type regedit in the Run textbox and press Enter. This will open the Registry Editor.

2. In the Registry Editor, navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE > Software > Policies > Microsoft > Windows > System.

login-new-dword.png
Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

3. Right-click System and click New > DWORD (32-bit) Value. Label this new DWORD DisableLogonBackgroundImage.

login-modify.png
Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

4. Right-click DisableLogonBackgroundImage and click Modify.

login-value-data.png
Sarah Jacobsson Purewal/CNET

5. Under Value data: type 1 (default will be 0). Click OK. (To switch back to the default Windows log-in screen, change this value back to 0.)

6. Press Windows key + L to lock your PC. When you login, you will see a flat color background (it will be the same color as your accent color) instead of the flashy Windows screen. If you want to change the color of this new log-in background, just go to Settings > Personalization > Colors and pick a new accent color.

Editors' note: This How To post was originally published on August 18, 2015, and was updated on April 5, 2016, to reflect new information regarding Windows 10 Build 14295.