Why every Mac owner should use Fast User Switching
Posted 18 February 2013 - 03:01 AM
This post has been edited by Phil: 18 February 2013 - 03:02 AM
Posted 18 February 2013 - 05:48 AM
Posted 18 February 2013 - 06:58 AM
I don't recall Leopard letting you do that. And you can only set automatic login for one account. Maybe you didn't have a password set for your wife's account? That's very dangerous if it's an admin account.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 07:05 AM
Posted 18 February 2013 - 07:24 AM
Standard disclaimer - the following advice is VERY DANGEROUS, but if you and your wife both just change your passwords to <blank>, you can get FUS without having to enter passwords. That is, go into accounts, and change your passwords to nothing. It'll probably ask if you want to do this, yada, yada. Now just go up to the user menu, and select the name, and the screen swings around and you're there, with no password nonsense.
I'm not sure why this is so dangerous, honestly. My wife and I are the only ones who are home any more. Our Internet access and wifi have strong passwords, and I think there's a default firewall in OSX. Beyond that, someone would have to guess that the password is <blank>; if your installing software and it asks for a password, if you don't just hit return - if you put in any sort of guessed password, it will reject it.
Maybe others can tell me why this is a horrible idea. But it does make FUS a lot more pleasant.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 08:04 AM
Nothing in all the world is more dangerous than sincere ignorance and conscientious stupidity. - Martin Luther King, Jr.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 08:28 AM
Well, this is interesting. Pdq5 explained in his reply why I don't need a password on my G4 running Leopard: when I set it up back in '03 I left the admin password blank, as well as the passwords for two other accounts. When I use FUS it switches immediately without asking for the password.
You learn something new every day. As far as it being dangerous, my wife used the G4 at a time when we didn't need to worry much about malicious downloads. 10 years later there's never been a problem. The new iMac is pretty much her machine and it is password protected, thus the somewhat slower FUS.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 08:45 AM
Also, as a parent, it would be nice to have a way to log off the kids without having to add more time to their account, in order to log in, then log them off.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 10:18 AM
":When you use fast user switching, all those tasks are suspended, and 100 percent of your CPU is available."
This is not true. Anything that was running for the other user continues to run (imagine video rendering in Final Cut Pro, for instance). On the other hand, applications that are idling rather than processing should, if they are properly written, consume no CPU resources even if you don't switch users. Such apps running in the background (not currently displayed) may be swapped out of memory so potentially don't consume memory resources either, even without user switching. However this does require the developers follow the more recent Lion/MtnLion guidelines and APIs.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 10:20 AM
I tried this to fast user switch to the guest account but it asks for a password, which I don't think the guest account has.
I figured fast switching to Guest is an easy way to give temporary computer use to, well, guests. I never bothered taking that step before because shutting down all my apps to log out then back in as guest was too much of a pain.
Posted 18 February 2013 - 10:43 AM
-- fixed myself: by disabling then re-enabling the guest account, this problem goes away