Synopsis: Login, Log in, Log into

Subject: Synopsis: Login, Log in, Log into
From: "Virginia L. Krenn" <asdxvlk -at- OKWAY -dot- OKSTATE -dot- EDU>
Date: Thu, 3 Nov 1994 09:36:13 -0600

Thanks to everyone who responded to the following question.

Which of the following would you use and why?

Login to the network.

Log in to the network.

Log into the network.

We use the command, logon, for TSO and the command, login, for Novell
NetWare. Since I'm writing about NetWare, I wanted to be consistent with
the command and, therefore, chose to use login (or a derivative of login)
in my text.

Based on the responses and my own feelings, the following is my choice for
writing this paragraph.

"Time restrictions limit when users can log in to the network. A user's
login access period can be restricted to specific hours and/or days."

All of the responses that I have received are included below.

My choice is "Log in to the network". I chose this one because to me,
"login" is not an action word, and "log" is. I've run up against this very
same problem when I was writing a manual this summer, and the unanimous
decision was "Log in to...".

We use login as one word when used as a noun or adjective, log in (two
words) as a verb.

Why? This is what is listed in our in-house Standards, and it also seems
to be the preference of the programmers.

Therefore, "Log in to the network." would be my choice.

I would use "log in to" because I have heard people talk of "logging in."
To me, this usage indicates that log and in should be separate words,
unless you are speaking of a login password or similar usage. I would not
use "log into" because I have been told simply to "log in." This entire
opinion is based on what I've heard, not a particular source, so it's
worth what you paid for it!

I prefer
log in to
login feels like a noun (____ said that, too)
log into feels (a) too physical -- as in, into the house
(b) like it's grouping "in" with "to" instead of with "log" and (c) wrong
when I try to construct the out phrase -- log outof ?

Actually, I rank the choices (1) log in to, (2) login to, (3) log into.

While you see all three of these phrases around, only the second, "Log in"
is correct, IMHO. It has the great advantage of using existing words and
meanings, without inventing new ones for users to puzzle over.

"Login" is a new, computerese, term. Who needs it, if we already have words
that work?

As for "Log into" -- you don't log INTO something; you log in TO it.

Those who don't mind inventing new terms with which only the cognoscenti
are familiar could go whole hog and use "Loginto."

Here at ____, *log in* is a verb, and *login* is a noun. We don't use any
form of *log into* in our documentation.

We developed these standards based on other high performance computing
centers' use of these terms.

We use the words in the following manner, both of which are consistent with
the IBM Dictionary of Computing, McGraw-Hill, 1994.

"To use the XYZ application, log in to the host computer"

Log in (as two words) should be used as a verb.

"The login script contains your user defaults"

Login is an adjective

We write:

Login to the network using njops.

Login to the network because the command name is login.

login and log are seperate UNIX commands. They are not interchangeable.

So, inclusive of my last message, if you are refering to login, as in
signing onto the computer, and if it is in reference to a UNIX server or a
UNIX station, you must use the term login.

You may verify this if you are on a UNIX server this way.

Go to your bin shell, type:

man login

You will get the command page
for the command login.

Do the same for log, and you will see a different command page.

I would use:

Log into the network.

Having seen "login" enough times on the command line, I've come to think of
it as a noun (equivalent to seeing "Name" next to a blank line on an credit
card application form, for example). You're asking for an action, so "log"
is a verb.

"Log in to the network" somehow doesn't look right, in my opinion.

I use the third: "Log into the whatever." However, I use the first one as
well. "The login screen blah blah blah." I do this partly out of
consistency with the software: "Log in screen" doesn't quite convey
the proper message. There is no former tree residing in the monitor.
However, log does have a verb entry in the dictionary and "log into" seems
to be the correct verb/preposition combination to use.

> Login to the network.

No. I don't regard login as a verb.

> Log in to the network.

No. Same reason, just a different spelling of login.

> Log into the network.

Yes. Because, despite the fact that it's jargon, you need some way to say
it, and this comes closer than anything else I can think of.

Which of the following would you use and why?

Login to the network.

Ouch! Jargon Alert! Jargon Alert! (Not use.)

Log in to the network.

Not quite. I don't like "in to" as separate consecutive words.

Log into the network.

Yes, although I would give some thought about "onto" as well, but I think
"into" is right.

Your example begs another question as well: Are we *really* logging into a
network, or are we (much more likely) logging into a server which is
attached to the network? Networks which require logging in may exist, but
I've never seen one.

My first choice is "Log _on_ to the network", because

o "Log" is a non-technical word"

o I do not psychically enter _into_ the machine but rather have my
electricity running on their hardware

My second choice is "Login to the network", because "login" is what I see
on my screen when I connect.

Actually, I would say 'log on the network' or 'log onto the network'.

I've never heard of logging INTO anything; I use the term "log on"
(two words) when referring to signing on to a system, online service,
or network.

My personal choice would be, "Log on to the network."

Choice: Connect to the network
Why: Because it's a more meaningful metaphor to me and, I think, many
others. I've never had to explain that "connect" means to log in but I
*have* had to explain what login means, and it always seems to wind up
meaning connecting. I think the widespread use of telephones is helpful
to us in explaining things. Most people are comfortable with the idea of
an electronic connection being something like (not in these terms)
"Establishing a signal path over which data can be transferred." They do
it all the time with their telephones. So I use it. My two cents anyway.

>Choice: Connect to the network

I think it's a lot nicer, but it doesn't mean the same thing.

When you log {in, on, into, onto, in to, on to} the network, you identify
yourself, and the network server decides whether to allow you to proceed
and what sorts of things you'll be allowed to do.

Connect does not have the same connotation of registration, validation, and

> Choice: Connect to the network
Except that connecting is different than logging in or on. I connect to
the net work using a dial-up node, then log on to my account.

I usually use log on. I am on line not in line.

My $.02 USD

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