Windows kiosk mode is not widely known, as it serves a niche purpose. It is very unlikely that you will use it on a personal PC; instead, it’s aimed more at businesses that want a computer to use without giving them the ability to access files or mess up the system.
Like Windows 10, the kiosk mode feature also comes with Windows 11, but enabling and configuring it on the new OS version is slightly different. Here’s how to start using this feature and get the most out of it.
What is kiosk mode?
Windows Kiosk Mode is an administrator implementation that prevents users from running anything other than a specific set or sets of apps on a Windows device. This mode turns your Windows PC into a single-purpose device dedicated to a specific task so users don’t interact with something they’re not supposed to.
This all stems from the “Assigned Access” feature, which limits what users see when an app is open.
Since the Kiosk environment is more restrictive than Windows 11 guest mode, enterprises and homeowners are able to provide better monitoring and control of Windows devices. Windows Kiosk mode offers two different environments: single-app and multi-app kiosks.
In single app mode, users can only see and use one app on the device. When the user logs in using the provided credentials, the application launches automatically. Users will have no control over switching to another app or deleting the current app.
This lock mode is commonly used in public devices such as a computer doing research in the library or touch screens installed in museums to provide information on relevant topics.
On the other hand, multi-app mode allows users to run multiple apps on one device. Organizations use it to enforce predefined policies, configurations, and applications, improving employee productivity and reducing distractions from other work.
How to Set Up and Use Kiosk Mode on Windows 11
Windows 11, just like Windows 10, comes with a dedicated Newsstand section in Windows Settings. Below we will show you how to set up and use this mode step by step:
1. Enable Kiosk Mode
To get started, you must first enable the feature in Windows Settings by following the steps below:
- Hurry To win + I to open Windows Settings.
- Move towards Accounts > Family and other users in the Settings window.
- Go to the Configure a kiosk section and click on the Begin button.
- In the next dialog, you will be prompted to create a Kiosk account. Enter a username and click Following.
- Next, select the app you want users to access and click Following proceed.
- Choose how users will interact with Kiosk and click Following.
- Choose a time for the app to restart.
- Click on Following > close.
Kiosk mode on your Windows 11 is now enabled and ready to use.
2. Disable Kiosk Mode
When you no longer need Kiosk mode, you can simply turn it off. Here’s how:
- Launch Windows Settings and choose Accounts from the left pane.
- Click on Family and other users on the right side of the window.
- Go to the Configure a kiosk section and select the Kiosk (active) setting.
- Choose the application and click on the Delete kiosk button below.
This should successfully remove kiosk mode on Windows 11.
Make Windows Kiosk Mode More Secure
Although Kiosk mode works perfectly right after you enable it, you can take it a step further and do some configuration to make the experience even smoother.
1. Activate tablet mode
Since with a normal PC, users will have access to your keyboard and its shortcuts, you can enable tablet mode on your PC if it supports a touchscreen. This will restrict users to using the screen only.
To enable tablet mode, go to Settings > System > Tablet mode and enable the toggle associated with the feature.
2. Change power button settings
If users have access to your keyboard, they will likely use the power button to turn the device on and off. To prevent them from using the power button, you can disable it through the Control Panel.
Launch the control panel and go to Power Options > Choose what the power button does. To select Do not do anything from the list of available options and save the changes. You can also remove the power button from the login screen using the Group Policy Editor.
Here is what you need to do:
- Open a Run dialog box by pressing To win + R.
- Type gpedit.msc in the text field of the dialog box and press Walk in.
- Now navigate to the following location in the GPE window:
Computer Configuration > Windows Settings > Security Settings > Local Policies >Security Options > Shutdown
- Double-click Allow system shutdown without logging in.
- To select disabled and click on Apply > OKAY to save changes.
Users will no longer be able to see the power button on their screens.
3. Disable Notifications
By default, kiosk mode blocks all notifications and prompts. However, notifications may appear on the login screen if you haven’t turned them off exclusively. To disable notifications, we will again use the Group Policy Editor.
- Open the Group Policy Editor by following the steps described above.
- Navigate to the following location:
Computer Configuration > Administrative Templates > System > Logon
- Double-click Disable app notifications on lock screen on the right side of the window.
- Choose Enabled and select Apply > OKAY to make the changes.
By following these steps, you will be able to make your Kiosk environment more safe and secure as it will further restrict your users’ access to all features of your PC.
Control your PC environment with Kiosk
Kiosk mode is a great way to prevent others from accessing files and using apps they aren’t supposed to access. However, it is important to note that while this feature has several advantages, kiosk mode can also cause system-related issues such as occasional freezes.
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