Tech

How to Disable Fast User Switching on Windows

  • Salman Ahmed
  • 23rd Feb, 2018

If you want multiple users using a single system, Windows provide a nifty feature called fast user switching but mostly users disable fast user switching option. With fast user-switching feature in Windows, you can use multiple accounts on one system at the same time without having to close all programs and log off beforehand.

This feature will not disturb the workflow of one user while others use the same system. Therefore, it helps to share the system in smooth manner.

However, as good as this feature sounds; there are drawbacks to it, especially if your system isn’t powerful. To help you out, we’ve create a guide on how to disable fast user switching on Windows.

user switching on Windows

Why do You Need Fast User Switching Feature

In Windows operating system, users can create multiple accounts on the same system. The need for multiple accounts arises where there is only one system and more than one user.

This creates a problem, as others can see your browser history, bookmarks and downloads. However, with the feature of fast user switching, every user will use the same system but by using their separate accounts.

In this way, they cannot log into browser history of others, access others emails, and provide better personal security.

How to Use Fast User Switching

With Fast User Switching, you can change from one account to another without signing out or closing current programs. Every user has its own folder to store their personal documents, folders, downloads, etc.

While using the several accounts at the same time, the process of fast user switching provides the system to stores setting and data in specific account folder. Thus, each user will have their own application and personal setting according to their needs.

If you are using multiple accounts on your Windows system, you have the option to choose other accounts by going to Windows login screen.

Switch User

In additional, there are several ways to use fast user switching option. Here are some ways to switch user account:

  • Click start button and select user icon from the start menu, after which you are able to choose another user account
  • Press shortcut combination keys Ctrl + Alt+ Del to select “Switch user” option
  • Go to the login screen and select the account you need

Why Sometimes it is Important to Disable Fast User Switching Feature?

The multiple user account option with fast user switching is useful in different situations, but there are some drawbacks of this feature. For this reason, many users want to disable fast user switching.

One of the biggest reason to disable fast user switching feature is that if it is not used inappropriate manner, it can lead to several system related issues. Here are the some of the common and crucial reasons, which makes a user to disable fast user switching feature:

  • System becomes slow when you switch user accounts, all data and application on these accounts remain running and continue taking up resources
  • If there are too many accounts logged in simultaneously and each keeps using various applications, you will encounter a problem that the computer runs out of memory
  • If other accounts in your system are logged in, you cannot shutdown or restart the system without signing out
  • And, if you forcefully shut down the system all the data will be lost

Thus, to get better performance from the system, users disable fast user switching feature.

How to Disable Fast User Switching Windows 10

If you are using Windows 10 Home edition, you will have to disable this feature by editing Windows Registry. If you have Windows Enterprise or Pro, you can make changes through Registry Editor or Local Group Policy Editor.

Well, If you have Pro or Enterprise, we recommend using Group Policy Editor, as it is easier than editing registry. How can you check what version of Windows 10 you are using?

Click Start button and search for “About your PC”. On the Setting Windows, you’ll have a clear idea of Windows 10 version as well as the system type on your computer.

Windows 10 Disable Fast User Switching using Registry Editor

Registry Editor is an essential tool to computer, but incorrect use can lead to serious problems. For instance, it can render your system unstable, which could require reinstalling Windows.

However, as long as you stick to this guide, you should not have any problems. If you do not feel comfortable with this method, you can ask an advanced PC user to do it for you.

Step 1:  Open Registry Editor to get started. Click Start button, type “regedit” (without quotes) to the search box and press Enter key.

regedit

Step 2:  In the Registry Editor, navigate to the following key from the left sidebar:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Policies\System

system option

Step 3:  Select “System” to look for entry “HideFastUserSwitching” on the right side. Then doubt-click on the entry to open properties window, and you can change the value in “Value data” from 0 to 1. Click OK button to save changes.
Hide Fast User Switching

Step 4: Close Registry Editor and restart computer. Then you can test whether fast user switching is disabled or not.

Registry Editor

Windows 10 Disable Fast User Switching Using Local Group Policy Editor

Step 1:  Open Local Group Policy Editor. Press Windows + R to get Run dialog box where you should type in “gpedit.msc” and click “OK”. After that, Local Group Policy Editor will open.

gpedit.msc

Step 2:  Browse the directory in the left sidebar of Local Group Policy Editor and expend follow path:

Local Computer Policy -> Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> System -> Logon

Step 3:  Select “Logon” and you can find “Hide entry points for Fast User Switching” item on the right side. Then double-click it.

Hide entry points for Fast User Switching

Step 4:  A new window called “Hide entry point for Fast User Switching” will pop up. Choose “Enable” option and click “OK” button.

Switching Enable

How to Disable Fast User Switching Windows 7 and Windows 8.1

If you have not upgraded to Window 10 and you are still using version 7 or 8.1, then the steps to disable fast user switching feature will remain the same.

There are no such differences in the steps. However, do note that there are some versions of Windows 7 and 8.1 that don’t have Local Group Policy Editor such as in the Home Edition.

In that case, we would recommend using Registry Editor Method to disable fast user switching feature on Windows 7 and 8.1.

Conclusion

The feature of fast user switching is very useful and handy for the users who wants to use multiple accounts in one system at one time. But due to old system or less space, many of the users thinks it is not necessary for them.

This article provides step-by-step methods by which you can easily disable fast user switching windows 10 feature from your system. Still, if you have any recommendations and questions related to the method to disable fast user switching option, you can contact us on our official twitter account or email us.

Salman Ahmed's Biography
Salman Ahmed Siddiqui is a passionate writer who loves to write about online privacy, crypto economy and trending technological developments. He loves to provide effective tips and guideline related to rising cyber challenges. When he is not writing, Salman watches Manchester United play and demonstrates his love for football with his mad FIFA skills.

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