Difference Between Log Off and Switch User Commands

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Article ID: 279782 - View products that this article applies to.
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When Fast User Switching functionality is turned on in Microsoft Windows XP, and you click Log Off on the Start menu, you have the option to click a Log Off button or a Switch User button. If you click the Log Off button, you will quit all running programs and disconnect all network connections for the current session, and the session will not remain active. If you click the Switch User button, all active programs and network connections will continue to run (the session remains active), and you will return to the Welcome screen, where other users can log on. The user's session will remain active until the computer is restarted or the user is logged off of the session.


To turn off Fast User Switching functionality so that the Switch User button is not available, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
  2. Double-click User Accounts.
  3. Click Change the way users log on or off.
  4. Click to clear Use fast user switching to log off.
NOTE: The keyboard shortcut Windows logo key+L can also be used to switch users.


Article ID: 279782 - Last Review: January 27, 2006 - Revision: 1.3
  • Microsoft Windows XP Professional
  • Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition
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