Why has logout moved

It used to be that to logout I had to click on my icon in top right and then on my name and then logout appeared in the menu list.
Now in 2.6 my name has gone (which is a bit of a nuisance if I have two or more logins to a forum (eg as an admin, as myself and as a test user) and I find that logout has moved to the cog menu (which used to mean preferences) which isn’t really a meaningful icon for what is listed there (which includes another cog icon that does mean preferences - this is a more generic use of the cog icon - settings or preferences)
Logout is not a setting or preference - it is an action. Also Summary, Activity and Drafts are not Settings.

If it is really felt that it is not a good idea to remind the user of his username and it needs to be replaced with an icon, then how about using a user icon (little head and shoulders outline) rather than a cog (which, I insist, most commonly means settings or preferences)

What is the reason for the change and can we have it reversed as not a terribly good idea?

Even better give me a simple logout button only one click away instead of two.


It was discussed here: A click too many: logging out


I would encourage using a separate browser, browser profile, or incognito session for test accounts.


Thanks for the link.

I strongly agree with the OP there.

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A bit off topic perhaps but could you briefly explain why? I don’t mean a test account in the sense of code development, more in the sense of an account that is used to test the user experience with different permissions, user settings etc. Rather than impersonating a real user on a live system.

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ooo, interesting, thank you. Does it still work in 2.6? I thought you couldn’t put script in the header html any more but it had to go in a javascripts folder

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Because you don’t need to log out to test other accounts. Your browser already includes features which will let you see the interface from different user sessions simultaneously.


You’ll need to ask the author :slight_smile:

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Are you talking about the impersonate feature or another thing I missed? :thinking:

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Typing ZZ will log you out.


ZZ but not on a touch device where the keyboard only appears when editing (and anyway a post has to be 20+ chars)
Also on a touch screen tapping multiple tiny menu icons to find logout can be tricky and switch browser config difficult/impossible.
On a mobile device is precisely when you don’t want to stay logged in for security reasons, a good reason for a simple button.


Incognito tabs keep separate cookie jars, which means you can have two accounts side-by-side.


Ah, yes, I misread and thought stephen was talking about a discourse feature, not a browser feature.

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Why it moved is covered here:

The main reason is that we had reports that it was unclear your username was a clickable button, which lead to people having a hard time finding log out and their preferences specifically. I haven’t heard of many issues with discovering the clickable tabs in the menu, so going that way seemed best.

I agree that the gear icon isn’t the best representation of everything under the menu (would a user icon be clearer? I’m a little skeptical). The gear icon is very clear for preferences of course, and it’s not unusual for other sites to put the log out link under a gear icon either (Facebook is one common example).


Thanks Kris, that makes sense. Of course Facebook has a commercial interest in making it hard for users to log out - which might be the case for some Discourse instances, but others may want to actively encourage their users to log out (hence my preference for an always visible, or at worst one-click-away button).
I wonder if I could add a tab to the person menu with a plugin. With the icons there is room for at least one more tab. The new tab would have an exit icon (?door-open) and one entry (Logout). Still three clicks to exit from any page though, and sometimes it is important to be able to exit quickly.
A plugin to add the exit button in the header is best, but on the main site I’m involved with we already have four additional header icons, so have to drop one on the mobile screen. Still I think this will be the way we’ll go.


I love the improvement of however it looked before, that layout made now sense to me.

I think the current gear icon is fine, and I think a person icon or a wrench icon or a hamburger icon in its place would be fine too (if you’d like a random user’s opinion).


I have a client whose users are likely to use public access computers. I created a theme component that adds a logout button to the top bar. I was going to share it, but it also has some other stuff.


Yeah I’m not super happy with the gear icon there TBH. Would reproducing the user avatar there make more sense? It’s all sort of “my stuff” under “my account”.

I like @falco’s suggestion of changing assign to the checkmark, then you are clear to use @Johani’s suggestion of user+cog. Honestly it could be just the user icon maybe?


ok, let’s try the user icon… duplicating the avatar so closely looks a little off to me. The lone user icon is more distinct from the current assign icon than user-cog is.

My worry about changing the assign icon to the tasks icon is… it makes sense in the context of this menu, but using a different icon in only one place weakens the association with all other occurrences of assign:

Screen Shot 2020-09-28 at 8.29.19 PM

Screen Shot 2020-09-28 at 8.31.33 PM

Screen Shot 2020-09-28 at 8.35.00 PM

We could make a rule that says… if you’re assigning use the user-plus icon, but if you’re viewing assignments, use the tasks icon. But that feels like a weaker pattern than “this icon means assign everywhere”…