How to log out of your computer operating system

Updated: 11/06/2021 by Computer Hope
Illustration: Log out.

When you are using your computer, you are logged in to your operating system. Even if you didn't type in your name and password, you are logged in to a user account. When you are not using your computer, log out to prevent other users from accessing your private documents and saved passwords.

To log out of your operating system, follow the steps for your OS below. The steps include keyboard shortcuts in case your mouse isn't working.

How to logout of Microsoft Windows

Windows 10

Using your keyboard, press Ctrl+Alt+Del and choose the option to Sign out.

Or, click Start and on the top of the Start menu click your name and choose Sign out.

Windows 8 and 8.1 users

Windows 8 sign off

Press the keyboard shortcut Ctrl+Alt+Del and choose the option to Sign out.

Or, at the Windows 8.1 Start screen, click your profile icon and choose the Sign out option as shown in the picture.

Windows 7 and Vista users

Press Ctrl+Alt+Del and choose the option to Log off.

Or, click Start, and on the Start menu right arrow next to the Shut down button and click the option to Log off.

Windows XP users

Click Start and click the Log Off button.

How to logout in the Windows command line

From the Windows command line, use the logoff command.

How to logout of an Apple macOS

  1. Click the Apple icon in the top-left corner of the screen to open the Apple Menu.
  2. At the bottom of the list, click the Log Out option.

Apple Log Out selector.

If logged in through a shell from the command line, use the exit command.

Tip

To log out of macOS using keyboard keys, press Shift+Option+Cmd+Q.

How to logout in Linux

If logged in through a shell from the command line, use the exit command.