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Disable guest session and create user accounts in Linux Mint 12

Linux Mint 12 is the latest release of the Ubuntu Desktop-based branch of Linux Mint. This release comes with several desktop options, a few screen shots of which have been posted here.

By default, Linux Mint 12 ships with a guest session enabled, so a password-less access to the system is possible from the login screen to anybody with physical access to a Linux Mint 12-powered computer. If you do not want that level of openness on your computer, this tutorial will show you how to disable that guest session, and also how to create additional user accounts on the system.

This image shows what the login screen looks like, with the guest session underlined. To begin the process of disabling it, open a shell terminal and type the following command: sudo gedit /etc/lightdm/lightdm.conf.
Mint 12 Edited Login Screen

That should open the LighDM configuration file in GEdit, a text editor. The original content of that file is shown below.
Mint 12 LightDM.conf

All you need to do to disable guest session from the login screen is to add the allow-guest=false declaration to the end of the file as shown here. Save and close the file.
Mint 12 Edit LightDM.conf

That should be all you need to do.
Mint 12 Edited Login Screen

The second stage of this tutorial is to show the simple steps involved in adding or creating a new user account. There are two types of accounts defined in Linux Mint 12 – Administrator and Standard. The account created during installation is, by default, of the Administrator kind. The next few screen shots will be used to show how to create a Standard account, one that does not have administrative privileges on the system.

To start, launch System Settings from the user profile widget. Click on User Manager, which should open in place. There are two steps in take here. First, unlock User Manager. Second, click on the “plus” button to create the new account.
Mint 12 User Manager

From the Account Type menu, select Standard, and fill in the other credentials for the account. If you want to give the account admin privileges, select Administrator from the menu. Click Create.
Mint 12 Create User Account

By default, a newly created account is disabled because a password has not been specified for it. Click on the arrowed line to create a password.
Mint 12 New User Account

Set a strong password for the account. Click Change.
Mint 12 Set User Password

Back to the main User Manager window, you will find the new account listed with the existing ones. To delete an account, select it and click on the “minus” icon. And to enable automatic login for any account (not recommended), select the account from the same window and turn it off by clicking on the button (upper arrow).
Mint 12 Delete User

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7 Comments

  1. mintuser says:

    I wanted to add a user. Looks like a nice tutorial except I can’t find System Settings. What’s the user profile widget?

    • mintuser says:

      I’ve managed to a add a user. However, to do it, I did ‘sudo apt-get install gnome-system-tools’, and then ran the Administration -> ‘Users and Groups’ program.

  2. David says:

    Great tutorial. Makes it seem simple now looking back. I just did the ‘add account’. Quick and easy now that I know. Thanks a lot.

  3. j says:

    I know this works in Ubuntu 11.10..but does not work on Mint 12.

  4. cmolinap says:

    Disabling guest session as you indicate doesn’t work. Asus Eee PC 701SD, Linux Mint 12 (CD 32 bits). Everything else but not MATE, I don’t need it.

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