I use Vista, on a laptop, but when the battery is low or critical it doesn't display a message or a sound, it just craps out.

I read somewhere that the whole not-sound-playing is by design!?!? http://support.microsoft.com/kb/950161/en-us#appliesto which seems utterly lame to me, but that's just me.

edit: actually, none of the system sounds are playing, like Windows start up and shutdown. I usually turn these off, cos they're incredibly annoying. I've noticed it now, cos now i've been testing various options ... They DO play when I dual boot into my Windows XP... so I don't think its hardware related, and sounds with video and mp3 are also playing normally.

However, the message ALSO doesn't pop up, so any help with that will be mightily appreciated.

This is the warning I DO NOT get, ever... the warning I DO NOT get, ever...

I've been deep into the control panel, and there IS some setting which deals with a Battery warning, but that one is turned ON already.

I've followed these steps from here: http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/how-to-set-low-battery-warnings-on-a-windows-7-or-.navId-397923.html#glossary-Sleep

a. Open the Control Panel.

b. Choose Hardware and Sound, and then choose Power Options.

c. By the selected power plan, click the Change Plan Settings link.

d. Click the Change Advanced Power Settings link.

e. The Power Options dialog box shows up.

f. Click the plus sign (+) by Battery.

You see five items for consideration, each with settings available for when the laptop is plugged in or on battery power. The items are in chronological order:

f1 Low Battery Notification: Turns on a warning for when the battery power gets low, as set by the Low Battery Level item.

f2 Low Battery Level: Determines at which percentage the Low Battery Notification warning appears. The value is set as a percentage of battery life.

f3 Low Battery Action: Specifies what happens when the battery reaches the Low Battery Level warning. Options are Do Nothing, Hibernate, Sleep, and Shut Down.

f4 Critical Battery Level: Determines at which percentage the critical battery action takes place. Values are set as a percentage of battery life and must be lower than the Low Battery Level values.

f5 Critical Battery Action: Specifies what happens when the battery reaches the percentage set by the Critical Battery Level. Options for On Battery are Hibernate, Sleep, and Shutdown. The additional option of Do Nothing is available for when the laptop is plugged in.

My settings: "f1 Low Battery Notification", yes, I've turned that on. Nothing happens.

"f3 Low Battery Action" and " f5 Critical Battery Action" are both set to Hibernate. Seems prudent.

Again, any help TO GET A WARNING, POP-UP OR WHATEVER, will be mightily appreciated.

  • Why don't you just install the manufactor's software that normally handles this behavior? – Ramhound Feb 6 '13 at 11:57
  • i use a HP pavilion DV2 laptop, and I'm already using whatever software they have recommended, "IDT High Definition Audio" – PrincessPooleRulz Feb 6 '13 at 12:14

From my personal experience, if you have low battery notifications turned on and your laptop still shuts down without prior warning, your battery is failing. A dying battery may falsely report being more charged than it really is, suppressing the warning altogether.

If this is the case, the battery charge will appear rather high before an unexpected shutdown and the battery will keep the laptop powered for comparatively short periods of time. The only fix is buying a new battery.

  • 1
    Don't think that's what's happening, because: 1. the battery does show low values and then it turns off. 2. Also, it has actually never worked on this laptop, but only recently i've been using it a lot on a train, so .... 3. Also, that always seemed a lazy explanation to me: wouldn't even a depleted battery have just enough juice to display the warning? That would seem to the obvious design feature: depleted battery warns of it's near depletion. TBS i'm not talking about a FAILING Battery (BTW how do i turn of that feature that saves this comment whenever I press enter? Really annoying!) – PrincessPooleRulz Feb 6 '13 at 13:03

Low battery warning (25%)

When the battery level on Windows Vista gets low, there isn’t any pop up or dialogue window come up. Instead, when battery reaches 25%, the indicator turns yellow to notify users about the low battery. The change in color may incite bottom-up process, but again, the small size of the notification area might make it a little bit difficult for user to notice. Of course, this helps users concentrate on their on-going tasks, at the cost that most people will ignore this indication.

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Critical battery warning (10%)

Once the battery drops to a lower level (10%, aka the critically low level), a notification is triggered and is shown on the lower right corner of the screen. It contains an image of a battery with very low power, and alerts the user to plug the computer in immediately. At this point, the user must either plug in as soon as possible or replace the battery. If the user ignores, the computer will go to hibernation when the battery level hits 5%.

So, Windows Vista does not show any pop-up notifications when the battery hits the low level. It instead simply turns the battery indicator yellow. If the battery hits the critical level, that's when a notification is triggered.

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