Sleep Vs Hibernate In Windows [Comparing Power Saving Modes]

In this tutorial, we will discuss Sleep vs Hibernate power saving modes provided by Windows 10 to let your system rest and relax:

Apart from the shutdown option, there are various options present in Windows to provide rest to the system and these features include sleep and hibernation as well.

It is necessary to provide a break to your system for increased battery life and better performance.

As the name suggests, the sleep mode is the power-saving mode. This mode can be very useful if the user has to go for a small break or needs to takes a power nap.

In this mode, all the working data remains intact and the system resumes when the user logs in again.

A user can use the hibernate mode when he/she needs to stay away from the system for a longer period of time and wishes to resume the system as it was left behind.

There is no usage of power as when the hibernation mode is enabled the system saves files to the hard disk and cuts off the power until prompted by the user.

Here we will also compare hibernate vs. sleep on Windows 10 in the latter section of the tutorial.

Sleep Vs. Hibernate in Windows_NEW

Sleep Vs Hibernate In Windows 10

What Is Sleep Mode

To use this feature, the user has to activate the sleep mode whenever he/she needs to go for a break. All the instructions and data being processed are stored in RAM until the system is revived again.

This mode is very helpful as it pauses the process and provides the user to take a short break and the process can be resumed where left. A user can activate sleep mode and easily retrieve the system after some time.

How To Activate Sleep Mode In Windows

The sleep mode uses very little power and keeps your commands and process saved in the memory.

The steps mentioned below can be followed to activate sleep mode in Windows.

  • First, click on the ‘’Start’’ button.
  • Now click on ‘’Settings -> System -> Power & Sleep -> Additional Power Settings’. A window will appear as shown in the below image.

Additional Power Settings For Sleep Mode

  • Select the option ‘’Choose what the power buttons does’’(for laptops click on “Choose what closing the lid does”).

Choose what the power buttons does’’

  • Under the heading “When I press the power button”, select the ‘’Sleep’’ option and click on ‘’Save changes’’ as shown in the image below.

Select Sleep Option

What Is Hibernate Mode

When a user activates the hibernate mode, the system saves the process and instructions in the hard drive that are retrieved when the user logs back into the system.

How To Activate Hibernate Mode In Windows

The hibernate mode uses no power and it saves up all the procedures in the memory.

The below-mentioned steps can be followed to active hibernate mode in Windows.

  • First click on the ‘’Start’’ button.
  • Then, click on ‘’Settings -> System -> Power & Sleep -> Additional Power Settings’’.

Additional Power Settings for Hibernate Mode

  • Now, select the option ‘’Choose what the power buttons does’’ as shown in the image below.

Choose what the power buttons does’’ option for hibernate

  • Select the option ‘’Change settings that are currently unavailable’’.

Change settings that are currently unavailable - Sleep Vs Hibernate In Windows

  • Select ‘’Hibernate’’ and save the changes as shown in the image below.

Select Hibernate - Sleep Vs Hibernate In Windows

Hibernate Vs Sleep Windows 10

It requires lesser power consumption.It requires no power consumption.
It is used when a short period break is taken.It is used when a longer break is needed.
Referred as Standby in older versions of Windows.Referred as hibernate in all versions of Windows.
It resumes to normal Windows when user prompts.It takes time to respond to user prompt.
The process are saved to the RAM.The process are saved to Hard disk or SSD.
Basic functions are working in the background.All the functions are suspended.
Requires less energy to function.Requires more energy to function.

Detailed Comparison Between Sleep Vs Hibernate Mode

#1) Power Usage

While comparing sleep vs. hibernate mode based on power usage – the sleep mode requires significantly less power. It transfers all the ongoing processes to the RAM and utilizes considerably less power to operate.

Whereas the hibernate mode saves the process to the hard drive and utilizes no power at all.

#2) Resumption

In sleep mode, resuming of the screen is instant, as all the processes are saved in RAM. As the system is prompted by the user, all the processes move to the main memory. Whereas in hibernation mode, the files are moved from the hard drive to RAM, which indeed requires time.

#3) Applicability

While comparing sleep vs. hibernate based on applicability, the sleep mode is used when the users take a short span. In contrast, hibernate is used to take a break for a larger span thereby wishing not to lose his/her ongoing processes.

#4) Synonyms

In the comparison based on the terms used for them in different OS, the sleep mode is referred to as Standby mode in an earlier version of Windows and is suspended to RAM in Linux. Whereas hibernate is referred to as suspended to the disk in Linux and safe sleep in Mac.

#5) Process Function

When compared based on their functionality, the ongoing process is transferred to the RAM and resumed when the user logs back to the system. Whereas in hibernation, a copy of the operations is made on the hard drive resumed when the user prompts.

#6) Mode Demonstration

While comparing computer sleep vs. hibernate based on the functionality after activation, the essential functions keep working in the background in sleep mode. Whereas in hibernation mode, all the background processes are suspended.

#7) Energy Efficiency: Windows

The sleep mode requires significantly less energy to resume as it is already functioning the necessary operations on a low amount of power. Whereas the hibernate mode requires a higher amount of energy to rise from hibernate mode and restore all the processes.

How To Put Your Computer In Sleep Vs Hibernate Mode

Follow the below steps, after making changes in the Power Management in the settings and enabling the sleep and hibernation modes.

  • Click on the ‘’Start’’ button.
  • Click on the ‘’Shutdown’’ button and choose the respective option to sleep or hibernate the system.

free snipping tool - Sleep Vs Hibernate In Windows

How To Wake Your Windows From Sleep Vs Hibernate

Follow any of the below-mentioned steps for waking any system from sleep or hibernate.

  • Click any key from the keyboard.
  • Move mouse.
  • Press the ‘’power’’ button from the keyboard.

Prevent Your PC From Automatically Sleeping Or Hibernating

There are various tools that can be used by the user to prevent the system from going into automatic sleep, and one such tool is the Automatic mouse mover.

This tool automates the movement of the mouse following the inactivity in a certain span of time. This tool makes a small movement that hinders the system to go into sleep mode.

Hybrid Sleep

There is another option available and is referred to as hybrid sleep. In this mode, all the processes are copied from RAM to the hard drive and the system goes to power saving mode or sleep, which keeps the RAM free making the resuming of Windows easier.

Steps To Enable Hybrid Sleep

Hybrid sleep is the advanced and most innovative way to keep the processes paused when the user seeks for a short break. Hybrid sleep can be enabled easily in Windows 10 using the steps mentioned below.

  • First, click on the ‘’Start’’ button and click on the “Settings” option.
  • Then, click on ‘Settings -> System -> Power & Sleep -> Additional Power Settings’. A window will appear and now click on ‘’Additional Power Settings’’ as shown in the image below.

Additional Power Settings for Hybrid Sleep - Sleep Vs Hibernate In Windows

  • A window will open as shown in the image below, click on ‘’Change plan settings’’.

chnge plan settings

  • Click on ‘’Change Advanced power settings’’ as shown in the image below.

Change Advanced power settings

  • A window will open as shown in the image below.

power options

  • Scroll down to the ‘’Sleep’’ option and click on the ‘+’ sign shown, further click on ‘’Allow hybrid sleep’’ as shown in the image below.

sleep after

  • Click on the ‘+’ icon on ‘’Allow hybrid sleep’’ and click on ‘On’ from the drop-down as shown in the image below.

Allow Hybrid Sleep - Sleep Vs Hibernate In Windows

  • Now, click on ‘On battery’ and ‘Plugged in’ and chose the ‘On’ option as shown in the image below. Then click on the ‘’Apply’’ button and click on the ‘’Ok‘’ button.

apply On Battery Option - Sleep Vs Hibernate In Windows

  • To use hybrid sleep, click on ‘’Start  -> Power  -> Sleep’’ button as shown in the image below.

Hybrid Sleep - Sleep Vs Hibernate In Windows

By following the above method, a user can enable hybrid sleep on the system. For using the hybrid sleep method on the system, the user must click on the sleep option present in the shutdown menu.

Suggested reading =>> How to shutdown or restart a remote computer

Frequently Asked Questions

Q #1) Is hibernate bad for SSD?

Answer: Hibernate is a mode that involves storing the process in the hard drive and saving power. But in the case of SSD, it will use some space of memory on your SSD that hardly creates any effect on the lifetime of SSD.

Q #2) Is it better to sleep or shut down the PC?

Answer: If the user is taking a short break then sleep is a better option as it will save him the time of restarting the system. If the user needs to take a long break then he/she can prefer to shut down as it will save power.

Q #3) Is it bad to keep the computer in sleep mode every time?

Answer: When the computer is put to sleep mode every time then the RAM will get filled up and there would be less memory left on the RAM for the system to function properly which indeed will result in system lag.

Q #4) Is it bad to turn off your PC with the power button?

Answer: Turning off your PC with a power button can be harmful as it can cause disruption for any IO operation going on or some files getting copied. Turning off power may corrupt the files in such a scenario.

Q #5) Does hibernation use a battery?

Answer: Hibernation requires a minimal amount of power to keep the resume service activated, so it does not drain out notable power from your system.


The system needs to be shut down over time because it free ups the memory on RAM and maintains the smooth functioning of the system. But Windows offers various options that make it easier for the user to take a small or long break from the system with the process resumed when the system is prompted.

In this tutorial, we came around two modes i.e. Sleep vs Hibernate PC. We understood their importance and also learned how to enable them on our system. Further, we created comparisons for both the modes on the basis of various key-points.