The Windows 11 Lock Screen

When your Windows 11 PC is locked, you’ll see a lock screen with a clock, date, and a special background image. Here’s how you can change the lock screen photo, remove the tips, and customize other elements on the screen.

First, right-click an empty part of your desktop and select “Personalize.” Or you can open Settings with Windows+i and click “Personalization” in the sidebar.

Right-click the desktop and select "Personalize."

In Settings > Personalization, click “Lock Screen.”

In Windows Settings, click "Personalization," then select "Lock Screen."

In Lock Screen settings, you have three main options: Personalize Your Lock Screen, which lets you set a custom image or slideshow as your lock screen background, Lock Screen Status, which displays a status widget on the lock screen, and an option that disables the lock screen picture on the sign-in screen.

The Lock screen personalization options in Windows 11 Settings.

To change your lock screen background image, click the drop-down box beside “Personalize Your Lock Screen” and choose either “Picture” or “Slideshow.” (The default option is “Windows Spotlight,” which pulls images provided by Microsoft from the Internet.)

Select an option from the "Personalize Your Lock Screen" drop-down menu.

If you select “Slideshow,” you can browse for a folder full of images you’d like to use. Windows will rotate between them automatically over time. If you choose “Picture,” you can select a recent image from the thumbnail list or click “Browse Photos” and choose a custom image yourself.

Click "Browse Photos."

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If you don’t want to see tips and cute statements from Microsoft on your lock screen, you can disable that by unchecking the box beside “Get fun facts, tips, tricks, and more on your lock screen.” This will remove the words and tips from your lock screen completely.

Uncheck "Get fun facts, tips, tricks, and more on your lock screen."

Below that, you can choose an app to show detailed status on the lock screen, such as how many unread emails you have or the current weather. Click the drop-down list and make a selection.

Select a lock screen status app from the drop-down list.

And finally, if you don’t want to see your lock screen background image on your Windows 11 sign-in screen (where you enter your password, PIN, or otherwise), switch “Show the lock screen background picture on the sign-in screen” to “Off.”

(Keeping this “On” is perfectly fine, too, depending on your personal preference.)

Turn off "Show the lock screen background picture on the sign-in screen."

After that, close Settings, and you’re ready to go. You can test the lock screen by pressing Windows+L on your keyboard or by clicking your account name in Start and selecting “Lock.” Have fun!

RELATED: How to Save Windows 10's Lock Screen Spotlight Images to Your Hard Drive

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Benj Edwards is an Associate Editor for How-To Geek. For over 15 years, he has written about technology and tech history for sites such as The Atlantic, Fast Company, PCMag, PCWorld, Macworld, Ars Technica, and Wired. In 2005, he created Vintage Computing and Gaming, a blog devoted to tech history. He also created The Culture of Tech podcast and regularly contributes to the Retronauts retrogaming podcast.
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