Easier Way to Enter Local Computer Name on Logon Screen for Windows 7

It’s easy to switch from a network account to a local account on Windows XP Professional. The logon screen provides a Log on to dropdown box where you can select (this computer). However, this feature has changed in Windows 7: There is no longer a dropdown box on the logon screen anymore. If you want to logon using a local account, you will have to specify the computer name by typing it manually. For example, if the computer name is COMPANY-GROUP-COMP1 and the local user name is LOCAL-USERNAME, you need to enter user name in this format: COMPANY-GROUP-COMP1\LOCAL-USERNAME. This could be a problem since most people do not know their computer names, and entering a long computer name is prone to errors.

I just found this out a couple of weeks ago, and I wish I could have learned of this earlier. Instead of entering the computer name, you can just enter a period (.). So, you can enter .\LOCAL-USERNAME in the logon screen if you want to logon to the computer using a local user account. You do not need to know the computer name, and it’s much easier to type. This also works for the user account control when you run a program as an administrator.


  • Tom

    This is a great tip! I wish I wouldn’t know about the .\ years ago (hopefully it works with all versions of Windows, I’ll be giving it a try soon).

  • This is a great tip. Thanks for sharing. I liked the way XP handled this in the past but at least now I’m aware of a simple solution for Win 7.

  • Ginger

    Holy crap I’m so happy I stumbled across this!