So, In Mavericks, you can set text to be displayed on the lock screen by checking the box: System Preferences > Security & Privacy > General > "Show a message when the screen is locked", then clicking "Set Lock Message..." and entering the desired text.

My problem: I want to do this to dozens of Macs by sending them a script.

Now, I found that I can set the text to be displayed with this command:

sudo defaults write /Library/Preferences/com.apple.loginwindow \
         LoginwindowText 'Enter desired text here'

But, I cannot figure out how to check that "Show a message..." checkbox via either a script, an MCX setting, or a Profile.

Any ideas?

1 Answer 1


I'm an idiot! Just having the "LoginwindowText" key set to a string value is all you need!

My "problem" was two-fold:

  1. The GUI won't display the checkbox as "checked" until you log out and back in.
  2. I had a typo in the key name in some of my notes that I was copy-pasting from.

Hope this helps somebody else... I spent some serious time banging my head against a wall!

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