Windows 10 has a new option under advanced Power Options for allowing wake timers to interrupt sleep, labeled "Important Wake Timers Only". I cannot find a definition for this anywhere. I usually have mine disabled but if this includes things like critical updates, I might leave this on, but if it wakes up to do things like running the latest Windows Search Experience Super Duper Enhancement or something, then I'll pass.

What does "important wake timers" mean, specifically?

  • These are really what Microsoft classifies as "important to them" so these would be items Microsoft defines as import enough for the action... i.e. likely Windows Updates, and so on. Aug 15, 2016 at 23:39

2 Answers 2


SiXandSeven8ths' answer is for wake timers in general, not important wake timers.

I've quoted below the best answer that I could find that specifically describes "important wake timers". It was provided by one of the moderators of the Microsoft answers community. It turns out that he does not work for Microsoft, however, no one in the discussion thread there could find a more in-depth answer coming directly from Microsoft.

"Important wake timers are a new class of wake timer that includes things like reboots after a windows update that requires one. They supersede all other settings and can only be prevented if the computer is off or if the timer is disabled in task scheduler"

Source: ZigZag3143, from the following link: http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/insider/forum/insider_wintp-insider_perf/important-wake-timers-only/1847ce44-d293-4c89-87fd-30b1ad0fd0a1

  • 1
    You'll want to put the source URL you got this quoted text from as a reference in your answer to ensure you're not committing plagiarism. This should always be utilized as a standard for referenced quoted text so I'm not picking on you or anything, just making rounds on late answers. Aug 15, 2016 at 23:37

I found this:


One answer says:

It's the ability for your PC to be brought out of sleep at a specific time. Say for example you wanted to back up your system at 1am every day but didn't want to leave your machine on all night - the wake timer would wake your PC up ready for the scheduled backup to take place. The power management options you have set may then allow it to go back to sleep until you're ready to use the PC again.

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