You can lock or unlock your Mac with a simple alphanumeric password. By default, there are no keyboard shortcuts that will allow you to quickly lock your screen. While such a shortcut can be added, it is a bit of a long process, and that is why an app like Lock Me Now exists. While this app provides an easy way to create a shortcut for locking your screen, ScreenSavery is a Mac app worth $2.99 in the Mac store that does all this and more. The app essentially does three things; adds animated screensavers to your Mac, lets you lock your screen with a keyboard shortcut, and lets you set up passwords in one of three ways. Passwords can be set the traditional way (alphanumeric passwords), they can be set up as a four digit number to be entered via a trackpad, or a swipe pattern that you have to draw on a nine dotted grid.
To use the app, you will have to disable the default Mac screensaver and create a password. Your existing password (if any) will not be used by the app. Visit the app’s preferences and from the General tab, select what kind of password you want to enable from the Style dropdown. You can create a Classic, Dot or Number password. Both Dot and Number passwords will require you to have a trackpad to enter the password.
To create a Dot password, drag your finger across the trackpad without lifting it, and connect dots in a pattern that you can remember. It will take a while to get the hang of the coordination, so practice.
If you want to enable a keyboard shortcut for locking the screen, check the Enable Locking Hotkey option and use either the app’s default shortcut or record your own. From the Screensaver tab in the preferences, select the kind of screensaver you would like and the interval after which it will be activated. Now, you’re all set to lock your screen.
The app is, without argument, excellent. Make sure you get the hang of entering your Dot password, or you might be locked out of your Mac. If you use complex patterns, draw them in some place safe until you are 100% sure you won’t lose it.