Apps How To Windows 10

Lock / Unlock Your Windows 10 Computer With USB Flash Drive

There are several ways to ramp up your personal security when it comes to your desktop. You might choose to lock it with a super strong password, a lengthy PIN or even go as far as Windows Hello. What if I told you that there is a way to up your security even further by having a USB drive act as a lock and unlock key to your Windows 10 computer system. Find out how to make something that sounds straight out of a Hollywood movie into reality!

Image shows lock on a green gate

If you are here for finding out how to turn your USB into a smart key for your computer system, then you have come to the right place! Find out how with the help of a couple of software you can make you and your laptop security as secure as can be.

This guide work for locking and unlocking Windows 7, 8/8.1, and of course, Windows 10 too!

The premise is very simple. We will make use of two software. With Rohos, we will make the USB drive into a Logon Key which you will plug in or out of your system, into the key you will enter the details of your Windows system.

Do keep in mind that this isn’t quite a fool-proof method. In the event of your USB being lost or not in your possession, you can still unlock your Windows PC the old fashioned way: by choosing your profile from the login screen and entering your security details.

Additionally, you can still use the USB as a regular USB even with this process. However, if you do format the USB, keep in mind that you will have to reconfigure the USB to the software.

Setting Up Rohos & VsUSBLogon To Protect Your Computer With USB Key Lock System

The first software we will use is Rohos [Download Link]. This is the software which will make your USB into a bootable smart key.

STEP 1: 

Download and Install Rohos on your system and choose “Setup authentication key“.

How to setup USB Key.

Before proceeding, make sure that the software has identified the right drive for the USB, but this is an automatic process anyway.

You can see F: is the USB.


Once you have confirmation in the software, enter your password which you wish, but do remember this password as we will need it later on in the guide. Click on Setup Key and you will see the following prompt on completion.

Setting up the key.

Your USB key is now ready!

STEP 3: 

You will now need to download VSUsbLogon [Download Link]. You will have to choose the OS version yourself (32-bit or 64-bit) but most modern systems are ordinarily 64-bit out of the box, so go for that

What VSUsbLogon will do in this step is act like the lock, where Rohos has made your USB into a key.

Once you have VSUsbLogon downloaded and installed, run it and you will see the following menu. Highlight the USB drive and click on Assign To.

Giving your key the authority it needs.


You will now see a new box open up. In this box you will once again enter your password we made in Rohos and do the following:

Check the box of Auto Logon and in the drop down box of “What to do after ejecting USB device” you will choose “Lock Workstation”.

Making the Key work with the lock.

As a final step, we will now reduce your countdown timer to 0 seconds making the lock down instantaneous.

To do this, you will go back to VSUsbLogon and click on Settings, when in here, head into the Ejecting USB tab and you will see a drop down box option labeled “Delay in action (in seconds)”. Set this to 0 and your workstation will instantly log out, and thus lock your PC.

Making the lockdown instant.

Press OK to save the changes.

Now you can try to eject your USB and you will see the impact instantly. Upon plugging your USB device back in, you will unlock your PC and get right back to your desktop!

Concluding Notes…

You can only imagine the applications of this software, this acts as a second defense and even as an added convenience for people who don’t want to go through the hassle of entering their login details every time they open or close the laptop.

Do keep in mind that this was done on an account with only one user. If you are facing difficulty due to having several users on your Windows, let us know in the comments section and we will be glad to be of assistance!

  • cfischer69

    Why do you need both programs? Rohos Logon Key also will logon when the USB key is installed and lock when removed?