Dynamic Lock aims to keep your PC secure by locking your device when you're no longer present

If you're a fan of Windows Hello but dislike how there's no option for it to automatically lock your PC when it detects you as no longer present, we have some good news for you. The latest Insider Preview builds of the Windows 10 Creators Update include a feature called Dynamic Lock, which will attempt to detect when you are no longer present in front of your PC, and lock the device for extra security.

Now although this feature is referred to as Dynamic Lock in build 15002, we're told that internally it was referred to as Windows Goodbye, a fitting name if you think about it. Instead of logging you in, it locks you out for extra security. This will be super beneficial for those in enterprise, who may have sensitive info on a machine that they are frequently having to step away from. In case you forget to manually lock your device, Windows will be able to do it for you with Dynamic Lock.

We're not exactly sure what Windows will look for to determine if you're no longer present at your device as Microsoft is yet to document this feature. It could simply be a rebranded version of "after 15 minutes of inactivity, lock my device", or it could be a much more 'dynamic' feature, utilizing Windows Hello enabled equipment, proximity sensors and more to detect if a user is present and determine how long they've been away for.

Updated: Looks like this feature works when paired to a mobile device via Bluetooth. Walk away from your PC with your phone, and your device will lock. Pretty neat!

It's pretty safe to say that Dynamic Lock won't lock your PC immediately after you've stepped away, so it shouldn't become an annoyance if you're someone who is constantly stepping back and forth from their device.

Also in the realm of Windows Hello improvements, the Hello set-up experience has been jazzed up slightly, with a more detailed camera preview when setting up facial recognition. There's plenty more features and changes showing up in the latest Windows 10 Insider Preview builds, so make sure you stay tuned at Windows Central for more.

Zac Bowden
Senior Editor

Zac Bowden is a Senior Editor at Windows Central. Bringing you exclusive coverage into the world of Windows on PCs, tablets, phones, and more. Also an avid collector of rare Microsoft prototype devices! Keep in touch on Twitter: @zacbowden.

  • I can see being locked out when you dont want to be. "You are no longer detected"...."I'M RIGHT HERE!!!"
  • Then you can just log in via PIN or password - not really a big deal.
    I'd be more concerned with walking away from my computer, coming back 15 minutes later, and discovering that it was unlocked the whole time because Windows Goodbye hadn't realized I'd left.
  • Your not getting the feature. If it stops seeing you, it locks you out. If it incorrectly stops seeing you while you are using it, you have to keep logging back in.
  • It should automatically log you back in when it sees you. Isn't that what Hello does?
  • Yeah, but who wants to sit in the middle.of working while it logs you out and then back in?
    Let them release it, test it out then give feedback.. -_-
  • If we weren't so used to cancellations in the MS camp, maybe we'd bother waiting until we judge stuff.
  • It would suck for it to lock you out when you are doing something like playing a game or trying to wait to the last minute to bid on something. I can't see it doing it repeatedly multiple times in a row though. I am sure there is some kind of time delay.
  • This!! The annoying part can be really frustration if you are in the middle of something and locks you out incorrectly and you have to log back in which takes a couple of seconds (2-5 secs) and worst if it happens often. Rendering to just find the option to turn it off. People are just concerned about how good or half-baked the implementation that can affect the overall experience of the user. For now its a mystery and hopefully this works with several other inputs to check if the user is actively using rhe device and give a minute of or two before comoletly locking out (depending on the user setting).
  • Do you work in an environment where you need your computer to be _very_ safe? If not... Don't enable this.
  • Exactly. Thank you. Of all those down voting me, you are over of two that understand what I am talking about.
  • So don't use it. Problem solved.
  • That's brilliant
  • Or log back in using Windows Hello.
  • .... And stop working while you wait for that.
  • Hello is super fast btw. Takes about a second to detect a face and unlock. Even Intel's TrueKey on my non-Hello laptop is fast at detecting my face and unlocking. Max 2 seconds.
  • Yeah, but it doesn't work about one out out every five log ins.
  • Could be a driver problem then.. Or maybe the hardware?
  • I think it's the technology. Same issue on my 950XL. Doesn't recognize me every now and then.
  • Then just train it a couple of times. It works flawlessly on my 950: on the go, with glasses, in pitch dark, with one eye opened, you name it.
  • You do know you can toggle this functionality on/off right? If you think it's logging you out when it shouldn't do, turn it off, simple.
  • .
  • Why, WIndows Hello works very well, so this feature should work very well too.
  • Again, and om not the only one, it general is unable recognize 15-20% of the time. Really, my OP was just a thought and I didnt think it would get this many people upset and have their panties in such a bunch. Just forget it.no biggie.
  • RS2 appears to make my Surface Pro 4 even fancier.
  • I remember when RS2 was supposed to be the rise of the Surface Phone, after mobile got the shaft on RS1, with a promise that "RS2 is where it's at!" Maybe RS4, guys...
  • They've said RS2 and RS3 would bring improvements to mobile all along.
  • But those improvements mean nothing when you can't buy a phone to use them on. I'm not interested in sticking with this disappointing Lumia 950. We were told, primarily by this site, to expect a hardware push from the Surface team with RS2, and now we get told to wait another year. The OS improvements mean nothing if there's no hardware I can buy to run it on. A phone that released in late-2015 with early-2015 teach isn't the kind of phone I'm looking to get in mid-2017.
  • I can buy at least two different models that have Windows Hello today if I want to. Are you upset that there are conflicting rumors? And why not buy a phone with late 2016 hardware released in late 2016 to run it? Or wait for other phones that are coming that will run it aswell?
  • What does Windows Hello have to do with my point at all? I can go throw W10 on a 7-year-old laptop, doesn't change the quality of the hardware, which is my complaint. That, and there ISN'T a late-2016 phone with late-2016 flagship hardware because late-2016 flagship hardware is exclusive to Apple. When it comes to non-Apple hardware, the SoCs launcch in the first part of the year, almost exclusively (Snapdragon SoCs). What's more, the last flagship launched was the Elite x3, and that thing isn't guaranteed support for the fifth replacement OS we're going to get thrown at us, with the promise "this time, it's for real." The Elite also runs on the early-2016 Snapdragon 820. It is a business-focused device. It isn't available through a carrier, meaning the discount options through things like AT&T Next aren't an option. Oh, and it STARTS at $684? That sounds nice, spending $700+ (after tax) to get a phone running year-old hardware meant for a use case that doesn't apply to me. SIGN ME UP
  • I wouldnt be so quick to get so upset about a lack of new hardware.  RS2 (Creators Update) is due this spring officially.  That update brings with it alot of tangible fixes and features to mobile, but its mostly behind the scenes stuff.  RS3 is suppose to bring more in your face changes to mobile and desktop.  I'm confident there will be new hardware this year to show off RS2/RS3.  I dont know about this whole waiting a year thing.  The 950/XL and Elite X3 were flagship phones for last year, this year should see new phones.  Whatever MS is working on, it is the first phone completely designed internally by the surface team.  Like every year, there will be a hardware refresh across the surface lineup, so my guess is they want to line up all hardware for one launch, not sprinkle them throughout the year.  So my point is you will get another flagship this year. 
  • Except we were told: 1. RS in mid-2016 would be a big boost. 2. RS is now split in two, with mobile now due with RS2 in early-2017, where they will push mobile hardware from the Surface team. 3. Surface phone is now back another year. 4. W10M will be shuffled out for W10A...sometime. Throwing out "RS3 in 2018, brah!" isn't a rebuttal to my problem. It IS my problem. It's the always-moving promise of improvement. Telling me RS3 in 2018 will make me happy when my complaint is that I was promised 2016 and 2017, and that now promising 2018 irritates me, is literally telling me the solution to my problem is the problem I'm having in the first place. I'm sick of promises of "next year." Even the Cubs have come through on that promise more reecntly for me! As for the hardware, I laugh. The build quality of the 950 is a daily reminder of that joke of "for the fans," given tha loudly squeaking backplate, though $50 replacement plates, the smudge-prone screen, and the dated-on-arrival display. You say the 950 family was a flagship for last year, and it launcched with earl-2015 parts, and in late-2015. It launched with an impending improvement from the competition. It wasn't like the 920, where it gave a so-so SoC with a buncch of nice, new features. Instead, it paired the so-so SoC with nothing exciting on the hardware side, except the Display Dock that has such horrendous support that I ended up getting it for Christmas and using it maybe 5 times, since there's nothing to do that I can't just do on the PC next to my now-in-box dock. On top of that, Microsoft laughed in customers' faces by launching the 950 at $550, then charged $100 for the Dock, while giving out the XL and a free Dock for $650. THE SAME PRICE. Oh, and since I wanted to go through AT&T? $50 upcharge on that model, something no other phone has experienced on AT&T, so I paid MORE for my 950 and Dock than a purchase from MS (which wasn't financially viable at the time) to get the XL and Dock. At least they didn't do something crazy like withold that XL I wanted from AT&T (they did). The Elite x3 is a joke, too. They made availability extremely limited and aimed to make it a business device. The pricing is high. They launched it with massive bugs that were inexcusable. The sorriness of that should have been easily predicted when they busted out a half-baked prototype missing the fingerprint scanner. Oh, and they didn't have the accessories that made it a worthwhile consideration ready at launch. It was a botched disaster, and another item on the list of reasons I don't bother with HP. I'd like to see a Surface Phone this year. However, I take this site's statement of "don't expect it until 2018" with much more weight than yours. You say we get a refresh every year, but we don't. Neither the Surface 3, Surface Pro 4, nor Surface Book got actual refreshes last year. You got SOME SB models with minor bumps that weren't even deemed worth a rename, and we were told a long while ago it'd all be held back in 2016 for a 2017 push. So, saying we always get annual refreshes is simply not the case. And yeah, you mentioned it just as bieng a practice from the Surface group, but when every other OEM can manage annual refreshes across all its devices, and MS is talking a gap of 2-3 years on mobile and 1.5-2 years on Surface, it's pitiful. It's the same kind of bungled ridiculousness that forced me into buying a Haswell CPU last time around (though AMD has a chance at redemption now, as Zen preps for launcch and Kaby Lake looks disappointing).
  • What made you think RS was supposed to be just one update?
  • The fact this site said it was split in two later into development, aiming to correct mobile in a second release. http://www.windowscentral.com/windows-10-redstone-reportedly-be-launched... ""Redstone", the unconfirmed internal code name at Microsoft for the next big update to Windows 10, could actually be released in two separate updates . . . it's possible many features that were once planned for the OS's launch this summer might be pushed back until one of the two Redstone update waves.​"
  • RS1 actually brought a lot of quality of life improvements over TH2.
  • Maybe? I can't recall a single way my 950 got better with RS1. It still runs a music program that can't tell the difference between a German soul singer and a metalcore band of Americans. It's still running out a Mobile Hotspot feature that fails 20% of the time until you hard reset the phone (which fails to fix it another 20% of the time as well). It's still carrying a browser that outright refuses to load pages at times. Maybe there were improvements, but they weren't to the things I do, and they certainly don't cover up the major warts of the phone I use (950).
  • Its interesting how different experiences can be.  RS1 did alot of good for my XL.  Mobile hotpsot has been solid and edge improved greatly for me, now loading the pages I use properly.  Clearly there are still issues under various circumstances, but you cant be expected to care about what was improved when you have these issues to deal with, so that sucks. At least it seems like MS continues to pursue the issues as we see in improving insider builds.  The key is to keep feedback flowing to MS through their offical listening channels (feedback hub, etc).  If they see it, they tend to want to fix it even if its not a fast fix.
  • My hotspot is what it is, a hotspot, but that's when it works. However, I have these days where it just doesn't start. It sits at "Connecting," and nefver goes. I can MAYBE get it to work after shutting off the cellular a few times and restarting it, but I usually have to do a hard reset on my phone (shutting it down normally never seems to work, but a forced reset does). Actually, that is better than what early builds post-RS1 did, though. I think it was late in the summer, maybe into the fall, where it would just seem to never understand something was connected. So, it woudl work fine for 5 minutes, then shut down (seemingly for a lack of activity, even while in-use). This was via Bluetooth, becuase using it via WiFi wasn't an option AT ALL--it just wouldn't start. Now, I can use the WiFi connection, and haven't tried BT in a long while because of it. I gave up with feedback, though. I used to give it, but I never saw things resolved. Groove Music took over a YEARS just to get a song view back, and it's been unable to properly label parts of my music for 4 years. There's only so much indifference from them I can take.
  • That's pretty cool. :)
  • I had figured that Windows Hello was broken in this build because it says the camera is not available and my hardware is not compatible on my Surface Book, but it looks like I was wrong. Lots of neat new features in this build, but it also feels really buggy so far.
  • If Windows Hello actually worked with RealSense cameras that might be a benefit.
  • uhhh it does.
  • Hopefully this works with several other inputs and sensors to actually check if the user is in front and actually using the device. There is a potential problem of Windows Hello camera and sensors to malfunction and will cause frustration if the system incorrectly "thinks" the user is away. So it needs to check such as keyboard inputs, mouse/trackpad movements and clicks, and promiximity sensor (if far enough). Hopefully even utilize external paired bluetooth devices such as phones and smartwatches through app (on non-MS paltform) or as a integrated feature on Windows 10 Mobile and maybe for Windows for Smartwatch/Wearable (if this will even exist)?
  • While that's great news for PC let's hope that Windows 10 Mobile gets rid of the "Beta" tag it's still carrying and gives us a faster/better sign in.
  • Uhm... Mobile and PC are running the same codebase... So that means you're referring to Windows 10 as beta no matter what platform it runs on.
  • "Windows 10 Mobile gets rid of the 'Beta' tag" If this site's to be believed, that tag is essentially "end of life" now, as they prep to make us wait another year for a phone to run the NEW mobile OS, W10A.
  • You can believe what you want on this site, but I dont see a new os the same way as you do.  Its not like 8 to 10 where you had to reset everything.  If there is a transition to a big update, it will be much more seamless then before.  They kind of wanted to avoid that situation.  Its tough becuase all you have to go by is what you hear online, but i just dont buy the idea that there will be some massive reset button again or that we wont get a new flagship phone this year. 
  • 7 to 8 was the reset, not 8 to 10. However, it's not just something on a technical level to consider. When you change names left and right, there's no continuity. When you keep telling developers to invest in a platform, then dump it and ask them to update their dev goals to support the new OS, you kill those people's interest as well. There's no way they can be less seamless than 7 to 8, but even the plans with 8 to 10 were messy, and with a seemingly deliberate aim to wreck relations with consumers, it's hard to say W10M to W10A is going to be smooth. Sitting on your hands for 2 years and breaking promises after major disappointments left and right isn't going to be smooth. MS just seems to have no faith they can succeed, and no sense that they should stop. So, they throw everything out every 2-3 years, have a panic, release something new, call it the last major shift, and repeat the freakout when it doesn't become insanely profitable overnight.
  • That's basically what a smartcard does today. Remove it and your pc immediately locks. Reinsert it and enter a pin to unlock. The smartcard also acts as the key to access internal external doors. So if you leave your pc to go to a meeting room, the break room, the restroom etc, you have to take your smartcard with you. You soon learn to do that. And all without any fancy detection systems that have to guess whether you are present or not ........ Sometimes the simple approach is the correct approach.
  • In the enterprise work place you have to lock your machine when you move away, not sure if you could set this up with just a icon instead of crt-alt-del.
  • Can't you just Win+L your desktop? it's the shortcut for locking the machine
  • That relies on human intervention, humans are imperfect. One person forgetting to lock at the right time can land a company with some major issues.
  • I would think they would already be using the auto lock feature that Windows has always had. I know if I step away from my computer for 15 minutes, it will be locked when I get back.
  • Isn't "Windows Goodbye" every Windows Phone user's motto?
  • Only Nokia owners.
  • I'm not sure how this would work on a standard desktop PC (or if it would work at all) given that most desktop PCs don't have cameras or proximity sensors.
  • It's just like Windows Hello. If you don't have a Windows Hello-supported hardware then you don't get it. If you don't have a sound card/chip, you don't get sound from Windows. If you don't have a 4K monitor, you don't get 4K resolution. If you don't have Bluetooth you can't use a Bluetooth mouse. Does it make sense now?
  • Okay. Everybodys missing the obvious here. Just say..."Hey Cortana, Lock my Computer". I discoverd this a few months back, but unless I missed it, I haven't seen anyone else mention it online. And if you have "Hey Cortana" enabled on your PC, then it's stupid easy to do. I have a Realsense SR300 with "Windows Hello" enabled, and the combination of facial login and voice lock (although I haven't tried "Log Out" yet) work perfectly.
  • Yeah you missed it
  • So. Your SR300 works with 15002? Mine quit working with 14986.
  • No. My production machine is non-insider, running 14393. I test Insider builds in VM.
  • This option is not for anyone.
  • Use your webcam mic.
  • This would be super useful for a Home Hub device with different family members coming and going, and with access to different files/folders and features. Keeping one family member logged in for "15 minutes of inactivity" would completely suck for a machine located centrally that responds to several people's requests all the time.
  • People are very anal this morning. This is supposed to be reliable. It might not be based on Windows Hello accuracy. It might just be based on occupancy since it's a lock out and not a log in mechanism. It is possible that the algorithm works such that it needs to be accurate for Windows Hello for log in then keeps track of occupancy/presence changes during that whole time the system is being used. If occupancy disappears then it locks out after a number of seconds.
  • I was just thinking it would be great to have a setting to "Lock the computer if someone else is detected that is not me." That could protect from someone with a gun who wants to steal your information, like in a spy movie type scenario. Detect the face/iris in front of the device has changed so lock the system up tight. That would be a great security feature for the paranoid. Something I can't use, since I'm always telling my wife, "Hey, check this out." The second she would check it out, the computer would lock and she would see nothing, and tell me, "Very funny. Now leave me alone. You're sleeping on the couch."
  • Win key + L works every time, no cameras needed. 
  • Unless you forget to hit it.
  • I don't, it's ingrained in me
  • Hence my smartcard comment. Oh you might forget to remove it - once. When that smartcard is also the key to get you around the building, it becomes religion. So now your pc is always locked when you step away.
  • I turned on Dynamic Lock on my Surface Pro 4. I went away from my Surface Pro 4 to test it out but it's not locking the computer at all.
  • "Super beneficial"?
  • Although not related I noticed they also snuck a small Edge tab into Internet Explorer, just to the right of the new tab.  Kind of annoying becasue they made the new tab and the Edge tab 1/2 size so I keep clicking Edge by mistake. 
  • I'd imagine there is a delay, if it loses your face, I'd imagine it tries a couple more times before locking. I'd also imagine it only checks every minute or so (or a time you set) your all complaining way to much, not even out yet. I'd also imagine if someone tried to use your computer, if for some reason it still hasn't locked, which is very unlikely, once it tries the scan the new persons face it will then lock.
  • This Dynamic Lock is vaporware. Tried 4 different Lumias and an iPad Pro. None work. And the BT wasn't all on at once. Fabulous.