Windows 10 lockscreen image. Header image.

You must first change the value of a registry key using the Registry Editor or our downloadable REG file. Then, you can choose a timeout option for your current power plan in the Control Panel's Power Options window.

By default, Windows 10’s lock screen times out and switches off your monitor after one minute. If you’d like it to stick around longer than that — say, if you have background picture you like looking at or you enjoy having Cortana handy — there’s a simple Registry hack that will add the setting to your power options.

First, you’ll need to tackle the Registry to add the timeout setting to your PC’s power options. You can do that by editing the Registry manually or downloading our one-click hacks. After adding the setting, you’ll then set your timeout using the standard Power Options applet in the Control Panel. Here’s how to get it all done.

Update: This registry hack works in Windows 11, too, if you’d like to change the Windows 11 lock screen timeout.

RELATED: How to Customize the Lock Screen on Windows 8 or 10

Add Timeout Setting to Power Options by Editing the Registry Manually

To add the timeout setting to power options, you just need to make an adjustment to one setting in the Windows Registry.

RELATED: Learning to Use the Registry Editor Like a Pro

Warning: Registry Editor is a powerful tool, and misusing it can render your system unstable or even inoperable. This is a pretty simple hack, and as long as you stick to the instructions, you shouldn’t have any problems. That said, if you’ve never worked with it before, consider reading about how to use the Registry Editor before you get started. And definitely back up the Registry (and your computer!) before making changes.

Open the Registry Editor by hitting Start and typing “regedit.” Press Enter or click “Open” to open Registry Editor and give it permission to make changes to your PC.

In the Registry Editor, use the left sidebar to navigate to the following key, or paste the path into the address bar:


Navigate to the registry key, or paste the path into the address bar.

In the right-hand pane, double-click the Attributes value to open its properties window.

Change the value in the “Value data” box from 1 to 2, and then click OK.

That’s all you have to do in the Registry. Your next step will be changing the timeout setting using Power Options. Should you ever want to remove that setting from Power Options, just go back and change the Attributes value from 2 back to 1.

Download Our One-Click Hack

If you don’t feel like diving into the Registry yourself, we’ve created some a couple of registry hacks you can use. The “Add Lock Screen Timeout Setting to Power Options” hack creates the changes the Attributes value from 1 to 2. The “Remove Lock Screen Timeout Setting from Power Options (Default)” hack changes the Attributes value from 2 back to 1, restoring its default setting. Both hacks are included in the following ZIP file. Double-click the one you want to use and click through the prompts. When you’ve applied the hack you want, the changes will take place immediately.

RELATED: The Best File Archiving Program for Windows

Note: You’ll probably get a popup warning you that using a REG file might harm your computer. Go ahead and click “Run” and “Yes” if prompted in this case. However, you shouldn’t usually trust REG files you download off the internet without checking them first. You can open any REG file with a plain text editor, like Notepad, and confirm it only does what it is supposed to do.

Lock Screen Timeout Hacks

These hacks are really just the 8EC4B3A5-6868-48c2-BE75-4F3044BE88A7 key, stripped down to the Attributes value we talked about in the previous section and then exported to a REG file. Running either of the enable sets that value to the appropriate number. And if you enjoy fiddling with the Registry, it’s worth taking the time to learn how to make your own Registry hacks.

RELATED: How to Make Your Own Windows Registry Hacks

Change the Timeout Setting in Power Options

Now that you’ve enabled the timeout setting, it’s time to fire up Power Options and put it to work. Hit Start, type “edit power plan,” and then hit Enter to open Power Options.

Note: Microsoft sometimes changes the way the Start Menu search works. Once, this menu was accessible by searching “Power Options.” If searching “edit power plan” doesn’t work, you can also open Control Panel and navigate to Hardware and Sound > Power Options > Change Plan Settings > Change Advanced Power Settings.

In the Edit Plan Settings window, click the “Change advanced power settings” link.

In the Power Options dialog, expand the “Display” item and you’ll see the new setting you added listed as “Console lock display off timeout.” Expand that and you can then set the timeout for however many minutes you want.

It’s a bit of a hassle having to deal with the Registry just to make this setting available, but at least it’s there. And if you have a desktop PC or a laptop plugged into a power source, it’s nice knowing you can leave that lock screen up for longer than a minute if you want to.

Profile Photo for Walter Glenn Walter Glenn
Walter Glenn is a former Editorial Director for How-To Geek and its sister sites. He has more than 30 years of experience in the computer industry and over 20 years as a technical writer and editor. He's written hundreds of articles for How-To Geek and edited thousands. He's authored or co-authored over 30 computer-related books in more than a dozen languages for publishers like Microsoft Press, O'Reilly, and Osborne/McGraw-Hill. He's also written hundreds of white papers, articles, user manuals, and courseware over the years.
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Profile Photo for Nick Lewis Nick Lewis
Nick Lewis is a staff writer for How-To Geek. He has been using computers for 20 years --- tinkering with everything from the UI to the Windows registry to device firmware. Before How-To Geek, he used Python and C++ as a freelance programmer. In college, Nick made extensive use of Fortran while pursuing a physics degree.
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