Dec 212013
 

Still leave your computer at risk when you get up and walk away? It’s time to set Windows to secure itself and save power when not in use. In fact, Windows has a built-in feature to shut down itself to protect your computer and save the power when no one has touched the keyboard or mouse for a set period of time.

Below I list 3 different ways you can use to suspend Windows when you’re not using it.  All of them, by default, require you to reenter your logon password to regain access.

Lock

After Windows locked, it doesn’t power down but displays the logon screen (or the screen saver of your choice). In this way, you can protect your computer from malicious access but can’t save power.

How to set up:

1. For Windows 7, click Start, type screen saver, and select Change screen saver.

2. For Windows 8, type screen saver in Home screen, click or tap Settings, and select Change screen saver.

3. To lock the screen automatically, check the On resume option and set the Wait option to an appropriate number of minutes.

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Sleep

When Windows sleeps, it will go into a suspended, low-energy mode and will wake up immediately when you press the power button. After waking up, you need to enter the password to back to where you left it.

How to set up:

1. For Windows 7, click Start, type sleep, and select Change when the computer sleeps.

2. For Windows 8, type sleep in the Start screen, click or tap Settings, then Change when the computer sleeps.

3. Set the “Turn off the display” and “Put the computer to sleep”.

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Hibernation

Unlike Lock and Sleep, a hibernating PC is a turned-off PC, effectively using no power at all. Windows copies everything in RAM to the hard drive, and then shuts the PC off entirely. When you reboot, everything is loaded back into RAM and the PC wakes up.

How to set up:

1. In the same applet where you set up Sleep, click the Change Advanced power settings link.

2. In the resulting dialog box, expand the Sleep section, then expandHibernate after, and set the minutes.

You can pick one or use all of them to set Windows to secure itself and save power when not in use. To use them, you can set up Windows to lock itself after five minutes, sleep after 20, and hibernate after 120 or any time you want.

P.S.: Unfortunately forgot password to unlock Windows? Turn to Windows Password Recovery for help.

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