Account Switching: Phased Rollout for Bitwarden Clients
Updated March 29, 2022 - Support for mobile apps added.
With the February and March releases, the Bitwarden desktop and mobile apps now have the ability to quickly switch between Bitwarden accounts, with multiple accounts logged in at once. This feature has been a community-requested favorite, and will be available soon across other Bitwarden clients.
If you have multiple Bitwarden accounts, such as a personal and work account, you can now conveniently access vault items from either without having to log out and back in again.
A new header shows which account you currently have active. On click it will reveal a dropdown menu with an option to add a new account and a list of other accounts you’ve logged into already. From here, you can select which account to access, with only one account active at a time.
Drop down on desktop application (above) and iOS (below)
Any vault operation, such as searching or adding vault items, takes place in the currently active account. Each account remains separate with no interaction between them, nor are they aware of each other. This keeps everything separate, clean, and private.
Add up to a total of five accounts, with any mix of cloud or self-hosted installations. Each operates independently with separate vault timeout and unlock settings, so that a work account may use biometrics to unlock, while a personal one uses a PIN, or whatever you prefer!
This new feature comes as a phased rollout across the Bitwarden clients. Account switching is now available on the desktop and mobile applications, with browser extensions coming soon. Stay tuned!
Q: What is account switching?A: Easily switch between multiple Bitwarden accounts, such as your personal and work accounts, from a dropdown list without having to log out and back in again. This provides convenient access to vault items from either account and allows you to maintain separation of personal and work vault items.
Q: How many accounts can I switch between?A: Up to a total of five accounts are supported at once. Each account is independent from the other and can have unique vault timeout and unlock settings.
Q: Can I search for or perform other functions on items from any vault?A: Only one account is active at a time. In order to work in another account’s vaults, it must be switched to being active.
Q: Can I select which account to autofill from?A: Autofill will only work for the account that’s currently set as active in the app. Added functionality for switching accounts during the autofill process is planned for a future release.
Q: Does this work for self-hosted installations?A: Yes, self-hosted installations are supported, and a mix of cloud and self-hosted accounts can be logged into at once.
Q: At work, does this mean that users can save or duplicate company logins into a personal account?A: The accounts are separate and there’s no interaction between them. Only one is active at any time.
Q: Can I turn this off for my business?A: The ability to switch between accounts is not governed by enterprise policies at this time. We are collecting and evaluating feedback for future functionality.
Q: What benefit does this bring to my workplace?A: Users have to juggle numerous passwords for their online applications and services. Whether at work and needing to check a personal banking account or at home and needing to log into a work-related application, being able to switch between Bitwarden accounts makes it easy to access both without needing to merge logins. This allows for better demarcation between personal and work.
Q: I’m on a shared computer, how can I be sure that my vault isn’t accessed by others?A: It is best practice to fully log out of the account every time you are done. You can also add more security by adjusting your vault timeout settings to either log out or lock the vault after a short time period.
Q: Will there be a “unified experience” where I can have every account active at once?A: We are collecting and evaluating feedback from Bitwarden users about this potential feature. Today Bitwarden supports one active account at a time.
Q: Why is this only available on the desktop application?A: The ability to switch accounts quickly will come soon to mobile apps and browser extensions. As a major new feature, Bitwarden is taking a phased approach to this rollout, starting with the desktop application.
With each release, Bitwarden publishes release notes which include more than what’s highlighted here. If you’d like to receive these notes directly by email you can subscribe within that page.
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Editor’s Note: This article was originally published on February 16th, 2022 and updated on March 22, 2022 to reflect the rollout of account switching to mobile applications.