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Windows 8.1: The Missing Manual by David Pogue

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Customizing the Login Process

As you now know from Chapter 1, which you’ve carefully memorized, you can log into your account using any of four methods. Typing out a password is only one of them (and it’s a lousy one for touchscreens):

  • Draw three lines, dots, or circles on a photo you’ve selected.

  • Type in a four-digit number you’ve memorized.

  • Type a traditional password.

  • Use your fingerprint, if your computer has a built-in fingerprint scanner. (Windows 8.1 is supposed to handle “fingerprint passwords” much better than before.)

  • Skip the security altogether. Jump directly to the Start screen when you turn on the machine.

So how do you specify which method you want? By following the admirably simple steps in the sections that follow.

Note

Every account still requires a regular text password; you’ll need it when, for example, installing new software or making system-wide Control Panel changes. The drawing-lines thing, the four-digit thing, and the no-password-at-all thing are all additional ways to log in.

Creating a Picture Password

This little stunt is perfect for touchscreens, especially tablets that lack physical keyboards, because it’s so much easier than typing a password.

The password screen will show a photograph you’ve chosen. You draw three lines or taps on top of it, as shown in Figure 2-11. The idea is that only you know how and where to draw these lines and taps. That’s your security.

Note

Truth is, picture passwords aren’t as secure as typed passwords. One reason is that bad guys ...

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