Five Percent: Conserve Energy

Climate Change Is Important: Energy Conservation is the First Step

November 14, 2005

Hibernate Your Computer

Category: Conservation,Save Electricity,Technology,Tips – Tom Harrison – 1:11 am

Modern computers can turn off the monitor, turn off hard disks, go into “standby mode” and even turn themselves off completely in a way that they leave everything just as it was.

Hibernating is a great feature of Windows, introduced in Windows 95, but really works now, 10 years later :-) It’s better than turning off your computer in most cases. It works by taking a snapshot of everything the computer is doing and saving it to the hard disk. Everything includes the email you were writing, the unsaved document, your network connection — really everything. When the computer starts up, it reads everything it remembered from the disk and leaves you where you left off. You don’t have to go through the annoying and lengthy Windows startup (or shutdown).

Bonus: if you have a cable, satellite or DSL Internet connection, there’s less opportunity for nasties to look for opportunities to sneak onto your computer.

You can even program the power button on your computer to make it hibernate, rather than shutdown and resume where you left off when you hit the power button again.

Standby is also a good option — it almost instantly resumes your computer state, and all you have to do is jiggle the mouse. When the computer is in standby (or hibernated) it is silent — no fans or hard disks, and a lot less electricity.

When your computer is hibernating, it is almost oblivious to the outside world, so set a longer delay if others on a network (at home or work) might use files or printers from your computer. Standby will generally let that kind of thing work fine.

Here’s how to set Power Options (from Windows XP, should be about the same for other versions of Windows):

  • Open the Start Menu
  • Open Control Panel
  • Open Power Options
  • Click the Hibernate tab
  • Check Enable Hibernation if needed
  • Click the Power Schemes tab
  • Set a delay to turn off the monitor (I chose 4 minutes)
  • Set a delay to turn off the hard disks (I chose 5 minutes)
  • Set a delay to go into standby mode (I chose 15 minutes)
  • Set a delay to go into Hibernation (I chose 3 hours)
  • Click the Advanced tab
  • Select an option from the “When I press the Power Button on My Computer” (I chose Hibernate)
  • Click OK.

If your computer does not support Hibernate, you may not see the hibernate tab.

It’s a way-cool feature. Do it!!

1 Comment

  1. Hi there
    My PC – XP, till few months back displayed SANDBY MODE. Hence it does support it but it’s lost somewhere recently.
    Currently it only displays RESTART, SHUTDOWN and STADBY button is displayed non highlighted and is not effective.
    When I go to power options, like you said, I do not have HYBERNATE AS PER PICTURE YOU HAVE DISPLAYE IN YOUR ARTICLE.
    How can I get back to display and work STANDBY BUTTON?

    Comment by al — December 28, 2011 @ 9:15 pm

RSS feed for comments on this post.

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.