A Guest User account is a type of account used to give temporary access to the computer. It allows a different user to use a Mac without the owner or administrator having to create a specific account for them. But, because it allows anyone to access the computer without a password, it can also create security problems.
Thankfully, the good folks over at KnowTechie are here to help.
At the end of the day, is this account useful? In a way, yes. You can allow a person to use your computer while away with a “Guest” account and you do not have to create an account for them. If the Guest account is enabled, simply click on the login screen in the “Guest” account – it will not even need the password to log in.
When the guest logs off or the computer is turned off, you will be prompted to remove any files created by the guest. The guest is not allowed to change any settings on the computer. Here is an overview of this account’s features:
- It can log in without a password;
- Possibility to connect to shared folders remotely (from other computers) without having a password;
- Not capable of changing the computer’s settings or other account information;
- No access to other users’ files, unless they are in the “Shared” folder;
- All files created by Guest can be removed at the end of the session.
- The Guest account can be controlled by parental controls.
Enabling/disabling the account
To enable or disable this account, go to the System Preferences and open the Users & Groups option. In order to make changes you need admin access, so click the lock icon, on the bottom-left corner.
On the left side, find the option “Guest User” (under “Other Users”) and click it. If it is enabled, then the option “Allow guests to log in to this computer” is ticked – if it is not ticked, then the Guest User account is disabled.
In this same menu, you can also configure the Parental Controls for this account, and also control if the Guest User account can connect to shared folders.