Howdy! – Unlock your desktop with face recognition.

Face Recognition isn’t technically one of the most secure ways to unlock your desktop. But its fun and adds a nice feature to those who are not completely security conscious about other people using their machine.

Howdy provides “Windows Hello™ style authentication for Linux. Use your built-in IR emitters and camera in combination with face recognition to prove who you are.Using the central authentication system (PAM), this works everywhere you would otherwise need your password: Login, lock screen, sudo, su, etc.”

If like me your constantly sudo this/sudo that, it makes a noticable difference to constantly having to type your password for elevated privillages.  However it should be noted that although Howdy will log into the desktop it will not unlock the keyring where passwords are stored. This still has to be done by manually entering your password.

Install via PPA on Ubuntu by opening a terminal and typing:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:boltgolt/howdy
sudo apt update
sudo apt install howdy

After installing you need to let Howdy recognise your face, by entering:

sudo howdy add

I recommend doing this a few times to adjust for different lighting, distance from the camera and other enviromental variables.

More information is available on the github page.

Know of any other intersting methods of unlocking your desktop let us know in the comments below.



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