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Windows 7: Any way to make Windows 7 load from Hibernation file?

22 Aug 2014   #1

Any way to make Windows 7 load from Hibernation file?


Yesterday I loaded my computer from hibernation, switched to the login screen when I had to leave my computer for a minute, and then came back and accidently restarted the computer after I signed in.

I'm not sure when the hibernate file is deleted or overwritten, but I would not allow Windows to load up again after the restart. A password is needed at bootup, so I shut the computer down instead of letting it load the OS.

Is there any way to get Windows to load the hibernation file? Since I had loaded the computer from hibernation before this, I'm guessing the file is still there, unless the restart caused it to be deleted. I'm using Windows 7 64-bit Professional.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Aug 2014   #2
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

Hello x8e925 Welcome to the Seven Forums!

First I will start off mentioning that back when 7 was first new and before the retail launch you could download a VM type program to launch 7 beta, RC builds from a usb flash drive. But the fast portable installs still required some form of boot loader and the OS was still loaded into the active ram(random access memory).

The best recommendation I generally give for how to go about seeing Windows load up properly following any period of hibernation or sleep mode besides the OEM form of resuming last session that can occur with a battery disruption(battery needs recharge or ac plug pulled out while Windows is running, etc.) is to simply plan to restart Windows so everything loads up fresh. That way device drivers are loaded fresh into memory once again rather then seeing Windows stall on you. It can save a number of headaches people report at times!

The only form of hibernation file you could see for 7 or any other OS for that matter wouldn't be your main OS to answer that question but a Virtual Machine where the Virtual Hard Disk(VHD) is a file stored locally on the main or other hard drive. That requires a program like VMware's VM Player or in the case of the XP Mode the Virtual Machine MS had provided Virtual PC 2009 or the previous Virtual PC 2007 people would run XP VMs with on the older Vista version.

When not in use the VM remains in a dormant mode as a file on the drive but not what you are looking for here. The fresh reboot when resuming or powering up fresh is the best way to avoid hangups.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #3

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

Any way to make Windows 7 load from Hibernation file?
No, at least not successfully.

The hibernation file file is never deleted except when hibernation is disabled. During the hibernation process the file is internally marked as valid and will be used at next startup. The details are undocumented. During the restore process the file is marked invalid so it will not be used again. This is very important. The hibernation file contains a copy of RAM as it existed at the time of hibernation and must be completely consistent with the contents of the pagefile, the registry, and other files. After even a partial boot this will not be the case. The chances of a successful restore are essentially zero.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

23 Aug 2014   #4
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

Unfortunately this is where a fresh boot may prove to be the best remedy if you are only seeing a partial not restoration of the last session upon coming out of hibernation or sleep. With a full powerup if no password was ever assigned you should see Windows load right up to the desktop.

It sounds like something had happened to the hibernation file itself or wasn't created fully when the laptop when into hibernation which caused the log in issue to come up. The only now to find out if you would still see the user name/password prompt would be to fire her up and watch. If you do see it would suggest coming out of hibernation had revealed another problem.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #5


Thanks for the replies. If the hibernation file is marked invalid internally, then it would seem impossible to get it to load at startup, especially without causing problems. When I was using Google to search about this earlier, I saw that some people were looking for forensic tools to read what is in the file. I ignored those posts earlier, but I may look into it a little now.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Aug 2014   #6
Night Hawk

W7 Ultimate x64/W10 Pro x64 dual boot main build-remote pc W10 Pro x64 Insider Preview/W7 Pro x64

You're welcome! The hibernation file is mostly a snapshop of the desktop of how it was at the time the machine went into the hibernation mode. The snapshot when intact is then restored fully once the machine comes out of hibernation or the sleep mode depending on which option is used.

It's not a complete OS compressed into a file and stored on the drive however as you would see with a VM as I was mentioning earlier where the complete OS can loaded once a the host OS is already up and running. The Portable VBox was the program originally tried here back in 2009 which was only good for the beta and RC builds at the time and wouldn't be of any use for the retail product.

Here I use Bing not Google for finding things out just to note!
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Any way to make Windows 7 load from Hibernation file?

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