Windows 10 Pro sleeps the machine shortly after the screen locks. I want the screen to lock but the machine to continue running with a screen saver (or sleeping the display only).

I set up a new Lenovo X1 Carbon laptop with an administrator user account (Microsoft account) and a standard user account (local). In the administrator account I use local group policy to set:

Enable screen saver
Prevent changing screen saver
Password protect the screen saver
Screen saver timout (300 seconds)
Force specific screen saver (Ribbons.scr)

In Edit Power Plan, I set AC sleep to never and the Console lock display off timeout to 0.

After the screen saver kicks on or I lock the machine using [WIN] L, the machine goes to sleep within a couple minutes.

I have spent almost an entire day experimenting with group policies, power plan, and registry changes and nothing prevents the machine from sleeping except removing those group policy settings.

I need to enforce locking the screen when idle for security reasons. I also need the machine to not sleep so that it continues processing tasks or remains available for remote. I have a number of different, stand-alone machines (not joined to a domain) that will require the same setup.

  • 1
    An event should be logged to the System event log when the system sleeps that will indicate why it's sleeping. What does it say? Jul 17, 2019 at 18:28
  • are you also positive it's sleeping and it's not just your display turning off?
    – mael'
    Jul 17, 2019 at 18:33

1 Answer 1


There's a power setting that is hidden by default. Enabling and setting System Unattended Sleep Timeout cures many "premature sleep" issues. (see first answer) To enable, edit the Attributes value under HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Power\PowerSettings\238C9FA8-0AAD-41ED-83F4-97BE242C8F20\7bc4a2f9-d8fc-4469-b07b-33eb785aaca0 and assign a value of 2. Regedit

Then, Advanced Power Options will show: enter image description here

and you can set the time to something more reasonable than 2 minutes (the default).

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