Replace your Leopard default login background

Written by Federico in Tutorials Mac

Have you ever wanted to replace your default login background image?

If yes, here’s the solution: you can either do it manually, via apps or with terminal commands.


Leopard stores the default login background in the form of file named DefaultDesktop.jpg.

This file is located inside Macintosh HD System Library CoreServices DefaultDesktop.jpg.

After you spotted the file,drag the new login background into the folder and change the filename into DefaultDesktop.jpg. Next time you log on your Mac OS X Leopard, you should get your new login background.


Desktop 2 Login
You can download it here.


Matches the Leopard Login Screen background image to whatever the current user’s Desktop picture is. This eliminates the visual transition from the login background to the user’s background.

You can download ithere.


Loginox is an application which lets you easily customize the login screen with a single Drag-and-Drop.

Drag a JPG image from anywhere and drop it into the main window of Loginox: a simple click on the “set new login image” button will change the login background image.

For switching back to the Leopard default login background image click on the “Reset to default” button.


Find a wallpaper image , save it to your desktop as background.jpg, and in the Terminal enter:

sudo mv /System/Library/CoreServices/DefaultDesktop.jpg /System/Library/CoreServices/DefaultDesktop.jpg.old

You’ll have to enter your password to complete the operation.

Then, in your Desktop directory in the Terminal, type:

sudo cp background.jpg /System/Library/CoreServices/DefaultDesktop.jpg

Now, next time you log off, your login screen will have your new custom background.

To undo the operation, in the Terminal, type:

sudo cp /System/Library/CoreServices/DefaultDesktop.jpg.old /System/Library/CoreServices/DefaultDesktop.jpg

Generously provided by MacStories


  1. Vivian says:

    Congrats for your first tuto Federico. :-) And thanks to MacStories.

  2. Erik Jenkins says:

    I would like to suggest another app, SuperDocker. It is a great app, and it can change your logon screen among many other things. Here’s a link to the app:

  3. Matt says:

    Ravissant is a more comprehensive alternative, allowing you to change details on the login window itself as well as the background. Drag and drop interface, restore facility & ability to save your customizations

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