If you're a Windows XP user, you've surely noticed the little
images that display next to the names of each user who has permission to login
to your computer.
Image 1: Simulation of Welcome screen with logos.
You may have noticed that you have the option of changing these images by selecting
from a group of additional logos.
Image 2: Windows display of stock login images.
However, did you know that you also have the freedom to customize your login
logo by using just about any image you want?
Image 3: Dian's custom login icons.
Read on to see how easily your computer can be set up to greet you with your
favorite picture—your kids, your spouse, pets...whatever!
Finding the Right Picture
Windows will allow you to use just about any image you'd like as your custom
Welcome Screen image. However, there are a few considerations you'll want to
You might have this really great photo that you'd like to use, but it's huge!
There are lots of great photo editing programs available. Personally, I prefer
Pro (PSP). You can download a free, 30-day, trial version by clicking HERE.
Note! I wrote an article for
Magazine that explains how to resize photos using Paint Shop Pro. You can
get to the article by clicking this link: Edit
If you just double click the image, you'll discover what photo program is your
default. By reading the above article, you may find that your program has similar
tools for editing, so it might help you get started.
You might also have a great shot, but even if you resize it, you'll realize
that the subject in the photo is too difficult to view, because the subjects
are very small in relationship to the overall image.
In that case you'll need to crop your photo—remove the excess
portions of the image to make the subjects more prominent.
Although PSP has a cropping tool, the easiest way to capture the portion you
want from a photo, using PSP, is to use the Selection Tool, draw a
selection net (or marquee) around the part you want.
Image 4: Photo in PSP with area selected.
Once you capture the portion of the photo you want, you can simply hit Ctrl/C
to copy that selection to the Clipboard and then hit Ctrl/V
to paste it into a new image.
Image 5: Newly selected area now displayed in it's own image window in PSP.
A quick resize, using Alt/I+E and you're ready to save the
Note! Just incase you accidentally
altered the original photo while you were making adjustments to your new seletion,
be sure not to resave the original, so you don't save changes
you didn't mean to save!
Inserting a Custom Photo
Now that you've made any necessary adjustments, so that you have the best possible
image to use, you just need to choose it as your new login logo.
To do this, click Start/Control Panel and locate the User
Image 6: User Accounts icon in the Control Panel.
Click to open it. There you'll find all the User Accounts on your system. Click
on the one you want to modify.
Image 7: Display of accounts on Dian's system.
Once within the bounds of that account, you'll find options to make various
changes. Use caution if you decide you want to mess with any of these
Image 8: Display of Dian's account options.
Click the Change my picture option. This will take you to
the Windows stock images. You won't see your photo listed there. However, notice
the option to Browse for more pictures. Click that option.
A file dialog box will open which will allow you to ferret around your hard
drive to find the photo you want.
Image 9: Windows User Account photo dialog.
Tada! Your image is now customized. Just close this window. The next time
you login to your computer, your new picture will greet you!
Image 10: User Accounts with revised images.
So now when you breakup with that boyfriend—it's easy to change to that
new photo!<evil grin>