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Windows 7: Sleep, hibernate, or off?

13 Mar 2011   #1
bd74

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit SP1
 
 
Sleep, hibernate, or off?

When I don't plan to use my computer for several hours (say, at night when I go to bed), should I set it to: sleep, hibernate, or off?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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13 Mar 2011   #2
Maguscreed

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 x64
 
 

I personally turn mine off. Sleep can be problematic especially if you're on older hardware, and hibernate takes a huge chunk of drive space.
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13 Mar 2011   #3
bd74

Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Maguscreed View Post
I personally turn mine off. Sleep can be problematic especially if you're on older hardware, and hibernate takes a huge chunk of drive space.
I personally would prefer to turn it off at night. But, in my computer's manual it says this:
For best results when using Windows 7, do not shut down the computer except when you must turn off the power for safety reasons: to make repairs, to install new hardware or cards in the computer, or to change a battery. As an alternative to shutting down the computer, you can lock it or put it into either Sleep or Hibernate mode, if it is available. You can set the power management timers to put the computer automatically into Sleep or Hibernate mode.
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13 Mar 2011   #4
Maguscreed

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 x64
 
 

I've been hearing that kind of thing since windows 98 really.
What it comes down to is power supplies are only rated for so many hours of use. I'm sure some other people here will disagree with me, I'm just the first one that happened on your thread. I've found no real benefit to leaving the machine on. I do however have a very short timer on my monitor which goes dark after 5 minutes of idle activity. I don't use screen savers. They're all lame and cliche except the ones made by the graphics card companies, and those put the card under needless stress.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Mar 2011   #5
cluberti

Windows 10 Pro x64
 
 

If your system supports hybrid sleep, you should use that instead. Having it plugged in and in hybrid sleep will allow it to be "off" drawing as little power as possible, while still allowing fast resume (and hibernate if something goes awry and the PSU loses power). Power supplies since the late 90s have been *designed* to be used this way and doing so should not noticeably shorten or damage the lifetime of the unit. Microsoft also recommends this over full sleep in all scenarios except maintenance and extended away time.

It is a myth that somehow leaving your machine in sleep (versus shutting down and then powering back up) causes more harm to the components, again, unless you got your PSU as a knock-off off of the back of a truck in an alley . On newer hardware, expect less than 5W usage on a desktop in hybrid sleep (and probably closer to 2-3W the newer the hardware), and less than 2W on a laptop. In fact, shutting down and powering up every day should be no different than leaving the machine in deep (hybrid) sleep, as far as wear-and-tear are concerned.

Here where I am in the US, the difference I measured for a month between hybrid sleep and actually shutting the machine off was less than $1 USD in savings (actually, around 70) for a desktop computer. It's not worth it for me to wait the 2ish minutes it takes to boot cold as the 3 seconds or so it takes to wake from hybrid sleep. To me, it's worth the 70.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Mar 2011   #6
Golden
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ult. x64
 
 

Hi Cluberti,

Whats the difference between sleep and hybrid sleep? How do you know which one is being used when you choose sleep off the Start > Shut Down menu?

EDIT : found the answer by following your link:


What is hybrid sleep?
Quote:
Hybrid sleep is another new power-saving feature designed primarily for desktop computers. Hybrid sleep saves any open documents and programs to memory and to your hard disk, and then puts your computer into a low-power state.
Unlike mobile PCs, desktop computers typically don't have battery-based power backup. So if a sudden power failure occurs to a desktop computer in standard sleep mode, data loss could occur.
But with hybrid sleep turned on, Windows can restore your work from your hard disk. On desktop computers, hybrid sleep is typically turned on by default.
When hybrid sleep is turned on, clicking Sleep automatically puts your computer into hybrid sleep. When hybrid sleep is turned off, or if your computer doesn't support hybrid sleep, clicking Sleep puts the computer to sleep.
To turn hybrid sleep on or off:
  1. Open Power Options by clicking the Start button , clicking Control Panel, clicking System and Maintenance, and then clicking Power Options.
  2. On the Select a power plan page, click Change plan settings under the selected plan.
  3. On the Change settings for the plan page, click Change advanced power settings.
  4. On the Advanced settings tab, expand Sleep, expand Allow hybrid sleep, and then do one of the following:
    • If you are using a mobile PC, click On battery or Plugged in (or both), click the arrow, and then click On.
    • If you are using a desktop computer, click Setting, click the arrow, and then click On.
  5. Click OK, and then click Save changes.



Regards,
Golden
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13 Mar 2011   #7
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Screensavers used to be necessary, not anymore.

I shut my desktop machine off at night. My laptop is almost always asleep or hibernated.
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13 Mar 2011   #8
Maguscreed

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 x64
 
 

My concern about sleep and older machines was not related to the actual age, but the apparent lack of proper drivers for many components more than just 4 years old or so for win 7. I see a lot of bsod issues on wake caused by dated drivers.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Mar 2011   #9
Golden
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ult. x64
 
 

Mmm....it appears my computer doesn't support Hybrid Sleep, since the option is missing on this panel, and hasn't been turned OFF in Policies. What do you think? Is it on or off?

Regards,
Golden


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13 Mar 2011   #10
cluberti

Windows 10 Pro x64
 
 

Run the command "powercfg -a" to see what it says.
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 Sleep, hibernate, or off?




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