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Difference between Sleep, Hybrid Sleep, Fast Startup and Hibernate on Windows 10

If you are using a computer regularly than the terms Shutdown, Sleep, Hybrid Sleep, Fast Startup and Hibernate aren’t foreign for you. You might have used these functions multiple times while using your computer system to perform daily tasks. However, have you ever wondered why there are different modes introduced in the computer when they all perform quite similar functions? If yes, then let’s study the difference between Sleep, Hybrid Sleep, Fast Startup and Hibernate to clear out your confusion.


What is Sleep Mode?

When you put your computer in sleep mode, then you are asking your computer to take a quick nap. This is a simple explanation of sleep mode. Well Before your computer goes to sleep mode, it will store up all your tasks, disable unprocessed functions and set up the system at low operating levels. Moreover, in the latest motherboards, the fan also stops working so that the system can rest properly.

However, in sleep mode, the computer might seem shutdown, but in reality, it is pretty much active. The blinking LED light present at the front of the computer indicates that the computer system is not fully off. You just need to press a key on the keyboard, move the mouse or press the power button and the computer system will fire up immediately.

The benefit of sleep mode is that your Windows computer will start up immediately without the bootup. Moreover, all your previously running operations will stay the same. This mode also observes less energy which will make your computer system highly efficient, especially if you want to take a few minutes break from your work, then this option is great for you.

Sleep is particularly useful when your are stepping away from your PC/Laptop for a small amount of time. Then you can put your PC to sleep to save electricity and battery power. well sleep isn’t so good if you’re planning to be away from the PC for extended periods, as the battery will eventually run down.

What is Hibernate Mode?

This mode of your computer system is quite similar to the sleep mode. In the hibernate mode, your computer shuts off completely, but when you power on it, then all your previous functions will automatically activate. It is similar to the hibernating bear who is in deep sleep and requires more time to wake up from the nap.

When you activate the hibernate mode on your computer, then it will immediately save all your open documents and tasks on the hard drive and then completely shuts off. Now, your PC won’t be consuming any energy except for the power leakage from PSU.

As compared to the sleep mode, the computer in hibernates mode actives slowly and retrieve files at a slow pace. But, if you have installed SSD card, then you won’t even notice the difference between sleep and hibernate mode. This mode is useful if you have to leave your computer for a longer period like 2-3 hours.

Hibernate mode is a power management mode that powers down the computer while maintaining its previous state. In this mode, the current state of the system is saved from the random access memory (RAM) to the hard drive before shutting the system down.

When to shut down your PC

While the other power options will work for you most of the time, you will still have to shut down your PC from time to time.

  1. Consider shutting down if you infrequently use your PC. For example, if you use it for a few hours on Monday and don’t plan on using it again until Friday, there’s no harm in turning it off.

  2. Always shut down properly before removing power from your PC. Removing power includes things such as unplugging from a wall socket or by removing the battery.

  3. Always shut down before leaving your PC behind for long stretches of time, like when taking a vacation.

  4. Always shut down if you’re planning to ship a laptop or tablet by post, or when placing it in the storage hold while traveling by plane or coach.

What is Hybrid Sleep Mode?

If we put to sleep and hibernate mode into one blender and thoroughly mix them up, then the end product would be hybrid mode. In this mode, your computer can hibernate and sleep at the same time. This mode was designed for desktop computers whereas for laptops it is activated by default.

This mode first acts as the sleep mode and then turns into hibernate mode. First of all, your data is stored in RAM when you activate the hybrid model, but later RAM transfers data on a hard drive. So, first, your computer sleeps and then hibernate. It is a very good option in case of a power cut as you won’t lose any data because your data is saved in RAM and hard drive both.

With hybrid sleep on, Windows always chooses this power state instead of just sleep. In any case, with hybrid sleep, our system restores to full power relatively fast. In the laptops, hybrid sleep mode is activated by default because they are trained to save everything before battery fully drains out. So, if you put your laptop on sleep mode while charging, then automatically turns into the hibernate mode.

Thus, laptops don’t require hybrid sleep to activate. There might be a time when your computer won’t sleep or hibernate which eventually means no hybrid sleep. You should check your computer if it won’t perform any of these functions.

Hybrid sleep is a combination of sleep and hibernate; it puts any open documents and programs in memory and on your hard disk and then puts your computer into a low-power state so that you can quickly resume your work.

How to Enable Hybrid Sleep in Windows 10

  1. Open control panel,

  2. Search for and select power options,

  3. Click on Change plan settings under the active selected power plan,

  4. On the “Change settings for the plan” page, click on Change advanced power settings.

  5. On the “Advanced settings” tab of “Power Options”, expand Sleep tree, then expand Allow hybrid sleep subtree.

  6. Depending on your computer power configuration, you will see different options available

Hybrid Sleep Mode

What is Fast Startup?

This is a new model which is introduced with the latest version of Windows 10. It is a mode between the hibernate and shut down. In the fast startup mode, your computer isn’t properly switched from all your previously used documents and operations.

In this mode, your basic functions are saved over the hard drive before shutting down the computer system. However, it is a partial hibernate mode as only your important files are saved on the hard drive whereas third-party apps like your music player, photo editor, etc., won’t save up on the hard drive before shutting down the system completely. With the help of fast startup mode, the boot time of the computer system can be improved.

Turn On or Off Fast Startup in Windows 10

  1. Press the Windows Key + R, type powercfg.cpl and ok,

  2. The Power Options window should appear.

  3. Click “Choose what the power buttons do” from the column on the left.

  4. Scroll down to “Shutdown settings”

  5. Here uncheck the box to ” Disable fast startup“.

  6. Also, you can checkmark to Enable Fast startup.

Fast Startup

Okay, so people now you might have gotten a clear idea about the functioning and roles of the different power modes on your computer. The responsibility and need of every power mode are different and you can make your computer power efficient easily by using these modes. We hope that you enjoyed our detailed difference between Sleep, Hybrid Sleep, Fast Startup and Hibernate. And, hope you use the right power mode to make your computer system highly efficient.

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