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Personalize Your Windows

Customizing Windows on your computer not only adds a touch of your personality but also enhances your overall user experience. You can choose your preferred desktop background or wallpaper, color scheme (including light or dark mode), fonts, and what you see in the Start menu and taskbar. Additionally, you can customize the sounds, mouse pointers, and even the lock screen image to create a unique and tailored environment that suits your preferences.

Set a custom wallpaper

To set your own wallpaper or desktop background, go to Start > Settings > Personalization > Background. You can choose a photo and choose a fit for your desktop image. You can also personalize your background to a picture, solid color, or a slideshow.

Set your Windows background

Select your background, photo, and fit for your desktop image under the Background settings app in Windows

Personalize your display settings

Display settings in Windows, such as resolution, orientation, brightness, and color calibration, can be accessed through the Settings app. These settings allow you to customize your display to suit your personal preferences and optimize visual clarity. Additionally, you can also adjust the scaling and text size to ensure comfortable viewing on different screen sizes.

  1. Go to Start > Settings > System > Display.
  2. If you want to change the size of your text and apps, choose an option from the menu next to Scale.
  3. To change your screen resolution, use the menu next to Display resolution.
  4. To increase or lower the brightness of the built-in display, use the slider next to Brightness.
  5. To use warmer colors to help block blue light, turn on the toggle switch next to Night light. Customize the night light settings by changing the strength and set a schedule.

Open the display settings app

Brightness, night light, scale, display resolution display orientation, multiple display settings in Windows

Microsoft Account

Your Microsoft account connects all your Microsoft apps and services. Before you decide to create a new Microsoft account, you should be aware that you might already have one. It is the account that you use to sign in to Skype,, OneDrive, Windows Phone, and Xbox LIVE. Check if I have a Microsoft account.

Open the Accounts settings app

User name, sign-in options, and profile photo under the User account settings in Windows

Add additional users

Having different accounts on a shared device lets multiple people use the same device. Each user can have their own sign-in info, plus access to their own files, browser favorites, and desktop settings. The best way to add another user to your computer is to have them sign in with a Microsoft account.

To add a new user, go to Start > Settings > Accounts > Other users.

If you have trouble adding a Microsoft account, see the Microsoft account FAQ.

Add account button under the Other user settings in Windows

User account security

Secure your Windows login using a password, or Windows Hello features such as face recognition, fingerprint, or a PIN on supported devices.

To access your sign in options, go to Start > Settings > Accounts > Sign-in options.

Windows hello, facial recognition, fingerprint recognition, PIN, password settings under the Sign-in options in Windows

Change or manage your Windows login password or PIN

To change your password or PIN, go to Start > Settings > Accounts > Sign-in options.

  • Select PIN (Windows Hello), and then select Change PIN.
  • Select Password and then select Change.

Windows Hello

Windows Hello lets you sign in to your device using face recognition, fingerprint, iris, or a PIN on supported devices.

To turn on Windows Hello, go to Start > Settings > Accounts > Sign-in options. Select the Windows Hello method that you want to set up and select Set up.

To turn off or remove Windows Hello, go to Start > Settings > Accounts > Sign-in options. Select the Windows Hello method that you want to remove and select Remove.

Lock your device

If you are stepping away from your device for a few minutes, it is a good practice to lock it. This helps prevent others from seeing what is on your screen or accessing anything on your device.

To lock your device, press the Windows logo key + L.

Windows lock screen showing time and date

Time and language

The display language you select changes the default language used by Windows features such as Settings, File Explorer, and other applications. To manage the display language settings in Windows, follow these steps.

  1. Go to Start > Settings > Time & language > Language & region.
  2. Choose a language from the Windows display language menu, or, next to Preferred languages, select Add a language to install the one you want.

Set your time and time zone automatically, or you can set them manually in Windows. To set your time and time zone in Windows, go to Start > Settings > Time & language > Date & time. Turn on Set time automatically, or manually choose your Time zone.

Date, time, language, region, typing, and speech options under the Time and language settings in Windows

Change default apps

Whether it's setting a different web browser, email client, or media player as the default option, Windows provides flexibility and convenience in tailoring the user experience to individual preferences.

Are you looking to change your default browser or other default applications? Go to Start > Settings > Apps > Default apps and set your default app preferences.
To change the default app, you can either:

  • Set a default for the file type or link type. Enter the file or link type you want in the search bar and choose which app can open that file or link type.
  • Set defaults for applications. Select an app to see what file or link types it can open, select the file or link type and then choose your preferred app.
Set defaults for file type or application under the Default apps settings in Windows

Next, let us help you learn more about some software that might be preinstalled on your Windows PC.

Video Resources