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I recently received a 2012 MacBook Pro running Sierra for some development work. I'm quite new to Mac OS X, but was able to figure out how to enable fast user switching in order to lock my workstation when I'm away.

I've noticed however, that when I lock my workstation, a translucent capture of my desktop appears behind the lock screen and if you look hard enough you can see what I was doing before I locked the computer.

For example, if I were to lock my screen this very moment I would be taken to the login window but if I look hard enough I can read the text that I am writing for this post.

Is this a bug or a feature? Has it occurred to anyone else?

Mac OS X Sierra showing desktop behind lock screen

  • I believe its a feature of Sierra, when the mac is put to sleep, lemme check. – OzzieSpin Oct 4 '16 at 9:05
  • I can not re-produce it, I'd say its a bug.. have you checked that thats not the background? – OzzieSpin Oct 4 '16 at 9:07
  • @OzzieSpin Yup, the content changes to whatever screen I lock my mac at. The "0.00" happened to be an analytical page I had open when I locked the computer, otherwise it shows text and images, and I can also make out window borders. – zzarzzur Oct 4 '16 at 9:10
  • what the? Hmm, that is a bit odd... login, go to activity monitor, and force quite loginwindow, leave the mac to do its thing, shutdown, and then log back in, other then that I have no idea what to do, other then a phone to Apples really helpful mac support. – OzzieSpin Oct 4 '16 at 9:12
  • This has happened to me multiple times - using Sierra. I sometimes see other windows being painted on my wallpaper or fullscreen terminal (ie slack chat appearing over dark colors). Really really strange and bugging me. – c00kiemon5ter Nov 9 '17 at 13:42
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I've experienced this as well, currently in MacOS 10.13.5 A ghosted interlaced screenshot of my desktop and legible private information is visible on the standard lock screen and also the screensaver lock screen. This same image persists even after reboot.

I was able to clear the image by switching display resolutions.

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