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How to switch users on a Mac computer in 3 different ways

Macbook Pro

  • You can switch users on a Mac computer in a few different ways. 
  • To quickly switch users on your Mac, you can enable a shortcut that will allow you to choose profiles directly from a menu box in the upper right corner of your desktop.  
  • You can always switch users by logging out of your Mac, or simply locking the screen. 
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You can always switch between users on your Mac computer by logging out of your profile — but there’s an even easier way to do it.

Your Mac allows you to have multiple users on your device, whether it’s to switch between family members or between work and personal profiles. To enable faster switching between these profiles, you can check the “Show fast user switching menu as” option in your Mac’s system settings (as depicted below).

You can personalize this menu to display your full name, account name, or just an icon. Regardless of your choice, the menu will appear in the upper right hand corner of your desktop. 

Once you use it to click on another profile, your Mac will immediately prompt you to enter the appropriate password or Touch ID.

Here’s how to enable the feature and quickly switch between users.

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How to switch users on your Mac computer with fast user switching

1. Open System Preferences in Launchpad, or by clicking the Apple icon in the upper left hand corner of your desktop.

2. Select “Users & Groups” from the bottom row.

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3. This will bring you to your user settings. Click the lock in the bottom left hand corner of the pop-up to make changes.

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4. Enter your user password if prompted. This will unlock your settings, which were previously muted gray.

5. Check the box next to “Show fast user switching menu as.”

6. Click the double arrows next to the dropdown menu to select the display option: Full Name, Account Name, or Icon. Your changes should automatically save, but you can click the lock to prevent further changes during this session as well.

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7. Once this feature is enabled, you can easily switch between users through the shortcut now located in the upper right hand corner of your desktop. Click your name (or icon, depending on the display option you selected) to view your Mac’s other profiles.

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8. Click the user you wish to switch to. This will automatically bring you its direct login page, where you’ll be asked to enter a password or use Touch ID. Enter that information at this time.

How to switch between users on a Mac by logging out or locking your screen

1. Despite adding this shortcut, you can always switch between profiles by locking your screen or logging out. Click the Apple icon on the left hand corner of your desktop to view these options. You can also use the keyboard shortcuts listed.

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2. Locking your screen will bring you to the page asking for your password or Touch ID. Click “Switch User” at the bottom of the screen.

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3. This will bring you to your profile options, which can include a guest account. Logging out of your current profile will also direct you to this page. Click on the profile you wish to switch to and enter your password or Touch ID at this time.

image8 user

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