Hibernate And Sleep Mode In Windows: What’s The Difference?

All the laptops and PCs have different provisions to save the battery in default and as a user, you can try some tips that might be effective for the same. One such commonly used trick is to put the device to ‘Sleep’ when not used, to reduce power consumption.

There is yet another option available in Windows known as ‘Hibernate’, which also helps to save power and ensures efficient battery usage but it is not the same as ‘Sleep’. 

In this article, we will deal with everything about sleep, hibernate, the difference between sleep and hibernate, and the uses of each feature.

Hibernation mode

In Microsoft Windows, the hibernate option is not available across all the PCs as it was mainly designed for laptops. To put it in simple words, this option means almost the literal meaning of the word ‘hibernate’, which refers to a long sleep. 

When to use hibernate:

  • When you don’t want to shut down your laptop and you definitely know that you will not use it for a long period.
  • Put your device on hibernate when you wouldn’t charge your laptop/PC.
  • This will save power and is useful when the device not in use.

What does hibernation mode do to your laptop/PC?

  • As already mentioned the hibernation mode saves your device’s power, let us see what it does to achieve that:
    • In hibernate mode, the data that you were using or the opened documents, files, etc. are stored in the RAM before shutting off temporarily.
    • Then the laptop shuts off, hence almost no energy is consumed by it. 

Amongst all the power saving options available in Windows, hibernation is the least power consuming option.

Activate hibernation mode:

If you are using the latest Windows versions but couldn’t the hibernate option along with the shutdown and sleep options? Then, try activating it by following these steps:

For Windows 10

  • Open the ‘Start Menu’.
  • Select ‘Settings’.
  • Open the ‘System’ settings.
  • Search for the ‘Power & sleep’ option.
  • Click on ‘Additional power settings’ that would open a separate dialog box.
  • Select the option ‘Choose what the power button does’.
  • Open the ‘Shutdown’ settings and select the ‘Change settings that are currently unavailable’ option.
  • Click on the ‘Hibernate’ option and then ‘Save’ to finish the process.

Check out this useful article: 10 Ways to Speed Up Windows 10

For Windows 8.1/ RT 8.1

  • Open the ‘Settings’ by clicking on the top right corner of the screen.
  • Open and click on the ‘Power Options’.
  • Then select the option ‘Choose what the power button does’.
  • Open the ‘Shutdown’ settings and select the ‘Change settings that are currently unavailable’ option.
  • Click on the ‘Hibernate’ option and then ‘Save’ to finish the process.

For Windows 7

  • Open the ‘Settings’.
  • Go to the ‘Control panel’.
  • Click on the ‘System and Security’ option.
  • Click the ‘Power options’ and then select the option ‘Choose what the power button does’.
  • Open the ‘Shutdown’ settings and select the ‘Change settings that are currently unavailable’ option.
  • Click on the ‘Hibernate’ option and then ‘Save’ to finish the process.

If you already have the hibernate mode activated then directly follow these steps:

Windows 10

Click on the Start button or Windows logo button + X > Click on ‘Shutdown or Sign out’ > Hibernate

Windows 8.1/ RT 8.1

Click on the Start button or Windows logo button + X > Click on ‘Shutdown or Sign out’ > Hibernate

Swipe screen towards left > Settings > open the ‘Power options’ > Hibernate

Windows 7

Open ‘Start’ > Open options by clicking on the arrow next to Shutdown option > Hibernate

Sleep mode

The ‘Sleep’ mode is the most commonly used and recommended option by Windows, to save the battery of your device when not in use. Let us know more about sleep and how is it different from putting your device in hibernate mode.

When to use Sleep mode?

  • Sleep mode is suitable to be used when you are not going to use the device for a short period.
  • This will reduce the energy consumption of your device while idle but it uses a little power.
  • In most laptops, this mode is automatically activated if you simply close the lid of the device.

What does sleep mode do to your laptop/ PC?

  • When you put your laptop or PC on sleep mode, unlike in hibernation mode, the memory or data is kept in PC state but all other components are shut down.
  • Hence it consumes comparatively more power than the hibernation mode.
  • The time consumption for the PC to start from ‘Sleep’ is much faster than resuming from ‘Hibernate mode’.

To put your device on sleep mode follow these steps:

  • Open the ‘Start’ menu.
  • Select ‘Settings’.
  • Open the ‘Shut down options’.
  • Click on the ‘Sleep’ option.

To change the sleep settings follow these steps:

  • Open the ‘System’ settings.
  • Click on the ‘Power and Sleep’ option.
  • Go to the ‘Additional power settings’.
  • Click on the options ‘Choose what the power button does’ and ‘Choose what closing lid does’.
  • Change the settings and click the ‘Save’ option.

If interested do check out: Is Your Laptop Screen Flickering? Quick Fixes Available

Difference between sleep and hibernate

You can even set the time after which the laptop must sleep or hibernate in the settings as mentioned. For example: 

  • If you set your device to sleep after 10 minutes and hibernate after 15 minutes, then if your device is idle even after 15 minutes, it will automatically shift from the Sleep mode to the Hibernate mode.

So, we have seen all the features of sleep and hibernate mode along with the discussion about the difference between sleep and hibernate modes in Windows. Hope this was useful to save your device’s battery power and smooth functioning.

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