Setup User to Automatically Logon to Ubuntu 18.04 LTS Desktop

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Ubuntu 18.04 was recently released and I decided to install it for testing purposes. the steps below is how I got users to automatically logon to their desktop without typing a password.

This brief tutorial shows students and new users how to setup Ubuntu to login automatically without typing a username or password. This post is specifically geared towards users who have just started using Ubuntu or trying to switch from other operating systems like Windows or Mac OS.

When auto login is enabled, the next time you start up your computer, you’ll be logged in automatically. No selecting account or typing password.

Keep in mind that if this feature is enabled there will be no password to type so anyone with access to your computer will be able to access your account and your personal data including your files and browsing history. Th reason for enabling this should be made after thinking over it twice.

If your account type is standard, you will not be able to make this change. Contact your system administrator who is able to make this change for you.

To setup Ubuntu 18.04 to login you in automatically, sign on to your Ubuntu desktop and click the system menu option, then select System Settings as shown below.

ubuntu dash dock

Next, scroll down to the last item on the item list and select Details -> Users. On the user pane, select the account you want to log in automatically at start up and click the Unlock button highlighted in the image below.

Again, only the system administrator can make this change.

ubuntu 17.10 auto login

When you unlock the lock, it becomes green and will allow you to make the necessary changes on the user profile pane.

Next, slide the button next to Automatic Login to the right to show ON. This turns on auto login for this user. This change should happen instantly. Close out and the next time you restart the computer, it will automatically log in this account

ubuntu 17.10 auto login

This how one sets up Ubuntu to automatically log in. This settings is not recommended to be used in a public area. as anyone with access to your computer will automatically login and access your data and browsing history.

If you’re the only one using this computer or the computer is setup as a public Kiosk, then go ahead and turn on auto login.


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  1. The instructions given to alleviate the need to use a password to open Ubuntu 18.04 without a password may have worked for a pre–release version but do not work correctly for the final release.

  2. My system menu option button is not working. Do you have some suggestion?

  3. I have done the steps as shown but still have to enter my password at startup.
    I get a message that Ubuntu was unable to obtain my password.
    I am using 18.04.2 LTS on 2019.05.17.

    1. Me too! I have done the steps as Richard shows, but the request of password remains. If you find any solution, tell me please. Thanks

  4. long time i am looking for a solution to autologin with domain user to ubuntu that
    join windows server domain , until 19.10 no luck!!!
    Thank god on 19.10 they moved to GDM3 and there is a files in /etc/gdm3/custom.conf
    and it working like a charm!!!!
    i configured it like this:

    # GDM configuration storage
    # See /usr/share/gdm/gdm.schemas for a list of available options.


    # Uncoment the line below to force the login screen to use Xorg

    # Enabling automatic login

    # Enabling timed login
    TimedLoginEnable = true
    TimedLogin = domain\username
    TimedLoginDelay = 10




    # Uncomment the line below to turn on debugging
    # More verbose logs
    # Additionally lets the X server dump core if it crashes

  5. If you login as root via GDM then you can make your user “ubuntu” or other login automatically. In clear the “Unlock” is shown as “Unlocked” when using root.

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