How to create a picture password on Windows 8 (Step-by-Step)

Create a picture password Surface with Windows RT

We already talked about the new picture password on Windows 8, how fast and easy is going to make it for users to sign in to the operating system and how robust this new method is. I would encourage you check Microsoft demos new sweet picture password feature on Windows 8 before continuing.

Briefly, the new picture password feature on Windows 8 will enable users to select any image they want, draw circles and lines upon it, and make a password out of the gestures. Then the next time the user needs sign-in to Windows, they will be prompted to repeat the gestures on the picture instead of having to type a password. This new method of signing in on Windows 8 will work on touch enabled devices as well as on desktop PCs, but by default the feature is disabled, follow the steps below to create a picture password:


1. Use the Windows 8 Key - Small Monochrome +I to bring the menu and click Change PC settings.

2. From the PC settings, navigate Users and click on Create a picture password.

Win 8 picture password

3. Windows 8 needs to verify that you are the owner of the account, just enter your account password and click OK.

Win 8

4. Then the Windows 8 picture password wizard will appear, click Choose picture.

Select image for password

5. Click to select image that you like and it will make easy for you to remember the gestures, and then click Open from the bottom-right corner of the screen.

6. In this step you can drag the image to a position you want, then if you are OK with the image and position click Use this picture, or if you are not satisfied,  you can change it by clicking Choose a different picture.

Image as password - Windows 8

7. Now comes the fun part, sketch three different patterns, use circles, straight lines, and/or taps.

Sketch on picture

Important: Gestures are not limited to only touch enabled devices, you can do this with the mouse on your desktop PC as well.
Note: You can redo your gestures at any time of the process by click the Start over button in the bottom-left corner of the screen.

8. To confirm, repeat the same three gestures remembering the orientation in which you drew them the first time. If you did it right, you’ll get the Congratulations page, then just simply click the Finish button at the bottom. And now you are enrolled with picture password on Windows 8.

Image login completed

9. To test picture password, use the keyboard shortcut Windows 8 Key - Small Monochrome+L to lock the PC and now try to log-in once again, but this time the picture password display instead of the traditional password prompt.

If you prefer watching the processes, here is the video to learn how to create a picture password:

About the author

Mauro Huculak is a Windows How-To Expert who started Pureinfotech in 2010 as an independent online publication. He has also been a Windows Central contributor for nearly a decade. Mauro has over 14 years of experience writing comprehensive guides and creating professional videos about Windows and software, including Android and Linux. Before becoming a technology writer, he was an IT administrator for seven years. In total, Mauro has over 20 years of combined experience in technology. Throughout his career, he achieved different professional certifications from Microsoft (MSCA), Cisco (CCNP), VMware (VCP), and CompTIA (A+ and Network+), and he has been recognized as a Microsoft MVP for many years. You can follow him on X (Twitter), YouTube, LinkedIn and Email him at [email protected].