How To Enable Dynamic Lock In Windows 10

Windows 10 now supports different methods for keeping your PC secure. You now have three different types of passwords that you can set; alphanumeric, PIN, and picture. If you own a supported device, you can simply set up Windows Hello and coach it to recognize your face. The Creators Update for Windows 10 will present another locking method for your PC; Dynamic Lock. It's actually meant for users who forgot to lock their computer and it works with a paired Bluetooth device. Once a paired Bluetooth device, particularly a phone, is not nearby, Windows will automatically lock itself after a period of 30 seconds. Its a nice feature right :) ? Here is how to enable Dynamic Lock feature in Windows 10.

You will need to pair your phone with Windows 10 first via Bluetooth for this to work. To pair a Bluetooth device, simply go to the Settings app. Go to the Devices group of settings and add your device from the Bluetooth tab.

Once you've successfully paired your phone you need to enable the Dynamic Lock feature. Open the Settings app and go to the Account group of settings. Select the Sign in Options from the left column. Scroll past the normal sign in options; Password, PIN, and picture password, to the Dynamic lock option.

Enable option that says 'Allow Windows to detect when you're away and automatically lock the device'.

windows10-dynamic-lock.png

Once you're done enabling the Dynamic Lock option in Windows 10, it will automatically detect which of your paired device is a phone. You won't need to manually detect the device yourself. When you leave your PC, with your phone in your hand/pocket, Windows 10 will lock itself automatically after a period of 30 seconds. Unfortunately, there is no option to lock your desktop instantly after you leave.

There are apps like this that are available for the MacOS and Windows. They also function via Bluetooth and your phone. When you leave your desktop's proximity, it will be locked. Apps like this also support automatic unlock feature too.

Dynamic lock in Windows 10 works with all Bluetooth enabled phones; you're not restricted to only use a Windows phone. This feature is just partially live in Windows 10 Insider Build 15031. The feature can be turned on although the Settings app crashes whenever you try to pair the Bluetooth device.

How Dynamic Lock functions

Basically, Dynamic Lock simply polls the strength of the signal between your computer and the paired phone at a normal interval. As indicated by a story for Thurrott.com by Rafael Rivera titled "
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" (2/20/17), this new OS feature is referred to some as "Windows Goodbye," as opposed to the Windows Hello technologies that work with biometric recognition of fingerprints or face scanner. As per this same source, some OEMs actually refer to this feature a "Proximity lock." Whatever it's called, it's a helpful new feature that uses the regular circumstance where most PC users have mobile phones, as well as tend to keep those mobile phones on them at all times (even in situations when they're not working on their PCs).

Rivera tried this feature and observed that it relies on a continuous activity repeated multiple times each minute. As per Rivera, Dynamic Lock:

  1. Connects to the Bluetooth-paired phone.
  2. It retrieves the average Received Signal Strength Indication (RSSI) for that particular connection.
  3. Disconnects from the paired-Bluetooth phone.
  4. It determines whether the RSSI value plunges below a specific threshold.

Rivera likewise observed that this feature actually consumes power and will affect battery life on the two paired devices when it's running. He also noted that the cut-off mark for RSSI is somewhere around - 10 decibels (dB). In relation to this, he created a tool that measures this information, I also confirmed his observations to be right (here's a link to download the tool, called
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). Using this tool, you can decide how far away you need to walk before the PC locks. Rivera reports that he needed to walk "halfway across the floorplan" of his residence before the lock takes effect. In my home, the default setting implied that I needed to walk all the way to the opposite side of the house, as far as I could get from my home office before the lock would take effect.
 

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