How to Make a Guest Account on Your Desktop

by Danielle Fernandez

When you set up additional user accounts on your computer, you can share the device with with other people without compromising the security of your personal data. Each user is given a unique desktop with the option to configure individual settings, folders, email and other private information. In addition to the full user accounts, you can also add a guest account and offer anonymous users limited and temporary access to some of your computer's apps and files.

On a PC

On a Windows machine, the guest account is enabled from within the Control Panel. Type "Control panel" (without quotes) at the Start screen and then click "Control Panel" from the list of search results. Click "Change Account Type" under "User Accounts and Family Safety" and select "Guest Account." When you click the "Turn On" button, guest account access will be presented as an option at the initial sign-in screen.

On a Mac

The guest account settings are configured in much the same fashion on a Mac as a PC. First, select "System Preferences" from the Apple menu and select "Users and Groups" from the list of available options. Select "Guest User" on the left and check the option to "Allow Guests to Log in to this Computer." The guest account becomes available for selection.

About the Author

Based in Tampa, Fla., Danielle Fernandez been writing, editing and illustrating all things technology, lifestyle and education since 1999. Her work has appeared in the Tampa Tribune, Working Mother magazine, and a variety of technical publications, including BICSI's "Telecommunications Distribution Methods Manual." Fernandez holds a bachelor's degree in English from the University of South Florida.

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