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In Windows Vista, there is regular Hibernation as well as a Hybrid Sleep mode. These features can be found and enabled in the Power Options dialog (advanced settings). For some reason, I don't have these options available on my desktop computer.

This is what my dialog box looks like:

power options dialog1

Note that the options Allow hybrid sleep as well as Hibernate after are missing under the Sleep section.

How do I tell if this is related to my hardware and the device drivers? What can I do about it?


After running powercfg /hibernation on I now have the Hybrid Sleep and Hibernation options.

power options dialog2

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have you tried POWERCFG /HIBERNATE ON to enable Hibernation? – magicandre1981 Jun 8 '13 at 14:17
No, I haven't. Because I don't want to enforce hibernation on it if it's not supported by the hardware. Why else would it be missing from the options?... any idea? So I would prefer to know the reason behind it before I start implementing solutions to an unknown problem. – sammyg Jun 8 '13 at 14:19
Microsoft KB920730 explains how to enable and disable Hibernation using powercfg.exe. I'm supposed to use powercfg /hibernate on and powercfg /hibernate off. That's fairly simple, but why is the option from the dialog box missing then?... – sammyg Jun 8 '13 at 14:23
Possible duplicate: This – HelpingHand Jun 8 '13 at 14:32
@magicandre1981 Thanks! – sammyg Jun 8 '13 at 19:07
up vote 2 down vote accepted

As the comments suggested, hibernation is not hardware specific but rather software specific.

Click your START button and type CMD, Right click on the CMD icon and select Run as administrator. Type POWERCFG /HIBERNATE ON in the command prompt window and press enter.

The nature of hibernation will tell the OS to dump all physical memory onto the hard disk and the OS will check the hibernation file upon power on. During the hibernation, the system is fully powered down and no power draw is occurred.

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Alright, I'll try that. Will this bring up the options I mentioned in the question?... – sammyg Jun 8 '13 at 14:32
Once it is enabled (and possible a reboot) you should see hibernation in the dropdown of the Power Options. – kobaltz Jun 8 '13 at 14:54
Thanks! I now have the Hybrid Sleep and Hibernation options. I have not tested it yet but I'm pretty sure it will work now. It didn't require a reboot. – sammyg Jun 8 '13 at 18:55
I tried it today. It worked like expected. Now I can once again get a power outage and still recover to the last working system state since the RAM data is being dumped to the disk drive (hiberfil.sys). And Hybrid Sleep means I can almost instantly recover the system state since it's being held in RAM as well as HDD, for times when power is not lost. Great! Thanks! – sammyg Jun 9 '13 at 10:14
For those of you looking for a way to do Hibernation only, make sure you disable the Hybrid Sleep, because otherwise you will not get the option 'Hibernate' in the Windows shut down menu. – sammyg Jun 9 '13 at 10:19

How to tell if a computer supports hibernation

To actually test if a computer supports hibernation you can use powercfg /a.

The output should tell you if hibernation is supported. This is what I got running this command.

C:\Windows\system32>powercfg /a
The following sleep states are available on this system: Standby ( S3 ) Hibernat
e Hybrid Sleep
The following sleep states are not available on this system:
Standby (S1)
        The system firmware does not support this standby state.
Standby (S2)
        The system firmware does not support this standby state.


There are also other options you can use. Run powercfg /? and see for yourself. For example, running powercfg /devicequery s4_supported will list all the devices that support hibernation.

If Hibernation is enabled there should be a hiberfil.sys file in system partition root (c:\hiberfil.sys).

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