How to Change the Windows 10 Lock Screen Timeout

lst_top

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.

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.

Standard 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 to open Registry Editor and give it permission to make changes to your PC.

lst_1

In the Registry Editor, use the left sidebar to navigate to the following key:

HKEYLOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Power\PowerSettings\7516b95f-f776-4464-8c53-06167f40cc99\8EC4B3A5-6868-48c2-BE75-4F3044BE88A7

lst_2

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

lst_3

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

lst_4

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

lst_5

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.

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.

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 “Power Options,” and then hit Enter to open Power Options.

lst_6

In the Power Options window, click the “Change plan settings” link next to whatever power plan you’re using.

lst_7

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

lst_8

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.

lst_9

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.

Walter Glenn is a long time computer geek and tech writer. Though he's mostly a Windows and gadget guy, he has a fondness for anything tech. You can follow him on Facebook and Twitter.