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Thursday, October 18, 2012

How to change your login photo to one of your choice-not the Mac's!

Have you noticed that your Mac assigned a picture other than your smiling face as your ID picture on the log-in screen? Do you want to change the icon? Do you want your own face up there? Do you want a picture from the Internet as your ID picture?

This article will walk you through the steps necessary to change the ID picture to the one you want.

Step One. Where is the picture in the first place? You'll find it in the Users & Groups preference pane in System Preferences. (Figure 1)


So go to System Preferences. It looks like a gearbox in versions 10.6, 10.7, and 10.8.

Double-click on System Preferences and choose Users & Groups in 10.7 and 10.8, and Accounts in 10.6. Whatever the name, the icon of several heads in silhouette is the one you want. (Figure 2)


Step Three. Double-click on Users & Groups/Accounts and you'll see this window. (Figure 6). Notice the picture well. You'll use this to change the picture.Figure6-U%252526Gpreferencepane-2012-10-18-18-58.png

Step Four. Place your mouse/pointing device pointer on the picture well. Do Not Click on Anything. Note that a small downward facing arrow appears in the lower right-hand corner. (Figure 4)Figurefour-2012-10-18-18-58.png

Step Five. Now you can click on the arrow in the lower right-hand corner. The following box should pop up in 10.8. You'll see similar in 10.7 and 10.6. You see a grid of icons to use as your ID photo under "Defaults". You can scroll this grid of icons up and down. (Figure 5)


You also see "Recents" to let you choose a recently taken photo. Finally, you see "Camera" which lets you use your iSight or Web cam to take your picture.

Step Six. I assume you want "Camera" Double-click on it. You get a preview of your picture-yes, it's video, so stay still-And an icon of a camera (Figure 6). Click on the camera icon and remain still. You'll see a 3-2-1 countdown and your screen will flash white to act as a flashbulb.


Now you've got your picture. If satisfied, click on "Done" and the picture goes into the picture well.

Step Seven. If you want a picture from another source-your high school graduation picture, snapshots from the beach or a picture taken from the Internet-you get the picture onto your Mac as a .PNG or .JPEG file. If it's huge, I'd use Preview's Tools > Adjust Size…to shrink the picture down to 320 x 240 pixels. Save it under another name!

Step Eight. Now open up the Users & Groups preference pane and drag your picture into the picture well. It should take it and you have a new ID photo when logging in.

Thomas Briant

Editor and Media Manager, MacValley UG

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