On one hand, a suspended computer takes a steady but small amount of power. On the other, I heard that a full bootup takes a lot of electricity.

How much is that? Should I care about shutdown vs suspend in this aspect or is the difference negligible? Does a booting computer take more power than a running one (on SSD drive it takes 4-5 seconds to fully boot up)

  • 2
    Get one of those devices that you can plug into a wall and then into your computer that measures amperage used. Then you can test and find out for yourself. It is an opinion if that is negligible or not but in my opinion it is. – Eric F Aug 2 '16 at 15:12
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    How much power a computer will consume in this state depends on the hardware. The power states of modern Intel and AMD products have specific specifications, and depend on the PSU, to support if they can or cannot enter those states. This question seems far to broad as it currently is written to be answered for those reasons. "How much is that" is a question seeking a variable answer, there is no single answer, it depends on hundreds of individual variables honestly. – Ramhound Aug 2 '16 at 15:15
  • Why so many downvotes for a question seeking an answer? I don't really understand. Off-topic? Too broad? If yes, just vote for closing and don't downvote, please. – marmistrz Aug 2 '16 at 18:04
  • Ramhound's point is technically correct, there are many variables and this question would be difficult to answer if you try to account for every mW and every variable. But that isn't the intention of the question. The comparison can be made at the macro level, the way DrMoishe Pippik's answer approaches it. The question can be answered without interpreting it in a way that is overly broad. – fixer1234 Aug 2 '16 at 23:25
  • The question is fine, but you picked the wrong forum. I'm afraid you will not find estimating answers around here – phil294 Jan 5 '19 at 0:54

The difference is negligible in the course of one day, if it's a laptop or recent desktop, since the power supply (PS) is always on while plugged in, though using perhaps a watt or two.

For a laptop on battery alone, the power use in Sleep is significant and will drain the battery in a day or two. For that reason most power plans go from Sleep to Hibernate (or Shutdown if Hibernate is not enabled) after a few hours.

A bit of math shows that whatever the startup surge, it is a fixed cost, but Sleep is a continuous drain, and will eventually exceed any fixed cost over sufficient time.

| improve this answer | |
  • most, explained, answer, EVER! – 7h3w1z4rd Aug 2 '16 at 15:26

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