Windows 7 Tricks: Enable Hidden Admin Account, Automatic Logon
Article by George Norman
On 02 Feb 2009
If you did not get your Beta version of Windows 7 to put to the test, then hurry up and do so before Microsoft pulls download availability for it; if you are already using Windows 7 Build 7000 which you downloaded directly from Microsoft, and you are happy with it, then perhaps you would like to play with the settings, tweak the operating system so that it better suits your needs and preferences.

When installing Windows 7, the software will automatically set up an administrator account, which will later on be disabled (default behavior that also occurs when installing Windows Vista). Whenever you want to perform tasks under the administrator account with no UAC (user account control), you need to enable the admin account. A word of warning first: it is advisable not use the admin account on a day to day basis, only enable it when you have to address some problem or issue that can only be fixed otherwise (guest accounts offer limited accessibility, but from a security point of view are safer).


To enable the admin account, follow this simple step by step tutorial:
- Right click on Command Prompt -> Run as administrator -> type in the command “net user administrator /active:yes”.
- You might want to password protect you newly enabled admin account, so type in “Net user administrator password”. Replace “password” with the password of your choice, just make sure not to forget it.
- Log off after the command has been executed. When you login you will notice that the admin account has been enabled. To disable it once again, use the “net user administrator /active:no” command.

Alternative way of enabling the admin account:
- Start -> Search -> type in “secpol.msc” -> Local Policies -> Security Options -> Accounts: Administrator Account -> double click to enable/disable -> Log off and log back in to see the modifications.

Windows has enough boot speed issues for you to have to bother with the logon screen in Windows 7. This little tweak may not do much in terms of boot speed, but it will get rid of the OS’s account password protection thus letting you login automatically – which makes sense if you are the only person using the computer and you need not password protect it from other users.

Follow these simple step by step instructions to enable Windows 7 to automatically log you in:
- Press Win + R to access Run -> type in “control userpasswords2” -> Enter.
- In the User Accounts windows that has just appeared before you, uncheck “Users must enter a user name and password to use this computer” -> OK. You will have to confirm your password for the OS to process the modifications.

Other Windows 7 tricks, tips and tweaks that we’ve reported upon:

- Enable the Quick Launch and enhance the Send To menu in Windows 7.
- Tweak and optimize Windows 7 with SetteMaxer 0.5.
- Remove the Start Icon from the Windows 7 taskbar.
- Deal with crashing installers and updates.
- Use the new Windows 7 keyboard shortcuts.
- Put back Run in the start menu and disable send feedback in Windows 7.
- Activate hidden themes and get new themes.

Tags: Microsoft, Windows 7 Beta 1, Windows 7
About the author: George Norman
George is a news editor.
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