Do you leave your laptop running idle to perform different processes? If you do, then you might be manually locking down Windows to prevent unauthorized access to your system. On Windows XP, there was a handy feature in the Power Options that allowed users to automatically lock Windows whenever their laptop lid was closed. This little feature saved users the trouble of remembering to lock Windows every time they left their computer alone. Microsoft removed this in Vista, it’s missing in Windows 7 and Windows 8 as well. If you need such a functionality on newer Windows versions, here are two portable tools for you:
LCLock is a simple application that, when running, keeps an eye on your Windows power setting and lid switch change event to auto-lock whenever you close the laptop lid. And when you open the lid, you’ll see the logon screen.
LCLock runs silently in the background, using just under 1MB of memory, and monitors your laptop lid event without interfering with your workflow. I tested it on the 64-bit edition of Windows 7 and Windows 8, and found to be working as intended. It should work as well in the 32-bit editions, as well as on Vista.
The program doesn’t have a Graphical User Interface, so you’ll have to use the Task Manager to find
LClock.exe process and end it to close the program. To start the program with Windows, simply drop the executable file in the Startup folder – which can be found here:
- For current user:
- For all users:
You can get the software at the following links.
LidLock works exactly like the first program, in addition, it comes with a GUI and hotkey support that makes it easier for certain users to operate.
The program interface is divided in four tabs. From the Main tab you can enable or disable monitoring and the hotkey (cannot be changed). Under Settings tab you will find the options to automatically start the program on startup, set a time delay before locking, and choose to hibernate or sleep after a certain amount of locking period.
I found this program on Mediafire, but have verified with VirusTotal to be completely safe (Detection ratio: 0/44). Cannot link to the developer as his website and Twitter account appears to be deleted now.
Download: LidLock [112KB]
A little Registry hack is also there by which we can automatically lock Windows. It works by enabling a feature known as Away Mode in Vista and 7 (didn’t work for me in Windows 8).
Away Mode is a feature that was designed for media PCs. When enabled, it allows the computer to appear turned off to the user, but in reality Windows can perform tasks such as streaming, recording, downloading, etc. in the background. Here’s how to enable it:
- Open Registry Editor, and navigate to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\SessionManager\Power
- There in the right pane, create a new DWORD (32 bits) value. Name it
AwayModeEnabled, and change its value to
1(Hexadecimal). Close Registry Editor.
- Then go to the Power Options settings page in Control Panel and change the lid close action to Sleep.
If you want ready-made scripts, download below ZIP file.
Download: Away Mode registry file