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How to remotely log out of Windows 10

Windows 10 can automatically lock your screen if your system has been idle for a while. You can choose how long the idle period is for. It can be as short as one minute or as long as an hour or more. Locking the screen blocks access to the apps open on your desktop, and prevents anyone from getting to your files. If you forget to lock your screen, or you feel your password has been compromised, you can change your password and then remotely log out of Windows 10.

If you use a PIN with your desktop instead of your account’s password, then there’s no way to change it unless you have access to your system. Regardless what method you use to sign into your system, you can still use this method to remotely log out of Windows 10.

Find my Device

Before you can remotely log out of Windows 10, you need to have Find my device enabled on your system, and location services enabled on it as well. If both services haven’t been enabled on your system, you won’t be able to log out remotely.

To enable Find my device, open the Settings app. Go to the Update & Security group of settings, and select the Find my device tab. Enable the service and then go to the Privacy group of settings. Go to the Location tab, and enable location services.

Remote log out

Visit Microsoft’s website, sign in with your account, and go to your devices. Locate your device. It might say the Find my device is turned off but if you know that it’s on, go ahead and select the device.

Locate your device, and click the Lock button at the top right of the map.

You will see a message telling you all active users will be logged out, and local users will be disabled. Admin accounts will be able to log into the account. On the next screen, you will have the option to enter a message. This message will be displayed on the lock screen.

The log out will be almost immediate. The option on the device screen says ‘Lock’ but it does in fact log out all users that are signed into the system. Microsoft could do with a little attention to how it labels buttons. On the surface of it, this seems like it’s only going to lock the system and while that may be useful in some cases, a log out might be far better.

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