XP, Vista, Windows 7: Create a Shortcut To Lock Desktop

Posted August 20, 2010 by AlexTheBeast in Windows

This tutorial describes how to create a shortcut that will lock the desktop. It is now updated to show that this technique continues to work in more modern versions of windows including Vista and Windows 7.


Locking the desktop is a frequently needed on systems that contain private information. For example, at the hospital we should lock the desktop anytime we walk away from the system — oh, the work of HIPAA.

This tutorial will work for all version of Windows including XP, Vista, and Windows 7.

Here’s how to create a icon that will lock the desktop:

    1. Right click on a blank area of the desktop
    2. Select New
    3. Select Shortcut
    4. Type rundll32.exe user32.dll,LockWorkStation
    5. Click Next
    6. Name the Shortcut (“Lockdown Desktop” for example)
    7. Click Finish

Now clicking the shortcut will lockdown the desktop.

Do not forget that the WinKey+L shortcut will lock it as well.

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