Firstly, I am going to put text with the icons, so the user won't be completely clueless and as confused as a whale hurtling through the air from a great height.

Our WinForms application's user requirements has been added to and we now need to give the users the ability to log out of a server and then log back in, not just exit the application.

The icon that we're currently using on our menu bar to represent exiting the application is a "0/1" image, similar to, but not as stylish as, the image below:

Switch icon

The Crystal icon pack has a circular-type icon that reminds me very much of sleep/dreaming or magic/"poof" - the interjection, NOT the offensive slang word!

"poof" icon

Door icons seem like they might be a good fit, but then again it could represent exiting the application to many users (and I just plain-well don't like those "door" type of icons :-)

Door icon

My personal bias aside, what do you recommend? It is possible to change the Exit icon if need be.

  • Your title is misleading. It should be something like "Icon for logging out but not exiting" but it's your question!. I've added the images and tags.
    – ChrisF
    Oct 18, 2010 at 11:12
  • Thanks for the tags and the images ChrisF. Unfortunately I can't change the title to 'Ideas for an "Exit" Icon and a "Log Out" Icon in a WinForms Application' because "new users aren't allowed to post images. Earn more than 10 reputation to post images." I'm not sure if it's impolite to ask you to change the title or to change the title myself, drop the images and then ask you to add the images again. So I guess it's, "please could you change the title for me ChrisF?" :-) Oct 18, 2010 at 11:26
  • I didn't think that me posting the images would affect your ability to edit the question! Done now and I've set you on your way to getting the rep you need. BTW. to make sure a users sees a comment use "@username" somewhere in the comment. If they've edited or commented on the post they'll see it even if they're not the author of the post.
    – ChrisF
    Oct 18, 2010 at 11:47

2 Answers 2


You definitely need an icon that different to the standard "X" for closing/exiting the application as you are not actually closing the application down.

As you are adding text, the actual icon becomes less important (though a completely inappropriate icon is a bad idea). All it has to be is distinct so that the users can distinguish it from the other icons in its vicinity.

Your "power switch" icon might be a good choice as it resembles the icon on the standby button on a lot of appliances - the analogy being that by logging out you are putting the application into "standby mode".

  • Thanks for your input. Windows XP uses a key icon to log off, which I can't use because a key represents our security icon. It's been a while since I used a *nix distro, so I'll check what the various window managers/desktop environments use. Oct 18, 2010 at 11:40

Thanks for sparking an idea in my head @ChrisF. An icon like the "gnome-session-switch.png" icon here http://node28.files.wordpress.com/2009/05/icon-location.png
looks like it could be is what I'm looking for.

@ChrisF: I can't upvote your answer below because of rep count, so I guess a "Thanks!" has to do for now.

  • 1
    You could accept it (the hollow tick below the vote count). It will also give you +2 rep!
    – ChrisF
    Oct 18, 2010 at 11:58
  • I've up-voted for you (and myself) :-)
    – Dan Barak
    Oct 18, 2010 at 16:00

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.