You must have noticed how your Mac’s screen goes dark after a period of inactivity. Your Mac is resting and saving energy. But do you know all the different sleep modes that Apple offers? Let’s explore the different power-saving modes.
What is The Meaning of Sleep Mode?
Sleep mode is a mode in which the screen turns off, some background processes and the hard drive are paused, and the processor runs in power-saving mode. Although the computer stays on, it uses less power.
The sleep mode is a useful feature, but it can be pretty annoying sometimes. For instance, if you are downloading a large file and your Mac keeps falling asleep because there’s no other activity. In this case, the download might fail. Alternatively, if you have a job that requires your computer to be on all the time, you wouldn’t want your Mac to fall asleep and go idle. Pressing keys on the keyboard or constantly clicking the mouse button and entering a password to wake up your computer might be frustrating.
In this case, it might be helpful to learn how to stop the MacBook from sleeping before learning the different sleep modes.
How to Wake Your Mac and Steps to Prevent It From Sleeping
If your Mac falls asleep, you can wake it up by clicking the trackpad or mouse or pressing a key on the keyboard. If you have set a password for security reasons, you will have to enter your password after your Mac wakes up.
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Mac’s falling asleep whenever there’s a period of inactivity helps in preserving juice and extending how long the system lasts. But if you want to stop MacBook from sleeping for whatever reason, here are the steps to be followed:
- On macOS Ventura, you can turn off sleep mode by clicking the Apple logo > System Settings > clicking on the Lock Screen > clicking on the drop-down next to “Turn display off on power adapter when inactive” > setting the sleep time by choosing the desired option (1 minute to never) > finding the line “Turn display off on battery when inactive” and choosing the desired option (1 minute to never).
- On macOS Monterey and earlier, click the Apple logo > System Preferences > Battery > move the slider at the top of the screen to Never.
Different Sleep Modes on the Mac
The standard sleep mode on Mac leaves the RAM powered on, which allows the computer to wake up and quickly get back to work.
Generally, your Mac would automatically go to sleep if there has been a period of inactivity. This period can be anywhere between 1 minute to 3 hours. It is possible to have a preferred timespan before sleeping, or you can completely stop your computer from sleeping by going to System Preferences or System Settings.
This is the standard sleep mode that is used by default.
Safe sleep mode
The safe sleep mode copies the RAM contents to the startup drive before the computer goes to sleep. It allows users to recover their data in case of hardware damage, battery failure, or other unfortunate events that might affect the computer.
In this mode, the RAM remains powered on while the computer sleeps. Hence, the wake-up process is as quick as the standard sleep mode.
This mode is set up by default for portable Macs released after 2005. But all laptops don’t support this mode.
In hibernation mode, the startup drive saves data from the RAM and keeps it safe. The difference between hibernation and sleep modes is that the former turns off the RAM when the Mac is sleeping. Hence, it needs to copy the essential data from it first.
Once the Mac is woken up from hibernation mode, the startup disk restores all the important data to the RAM. This is why in hibernation mode, the wake-up time is a bit longer than in the safe sleep and standard sleep modes.
The standby mode was primarily designed to save battery charge. When you enter the standby mode, the current session will be recorded to flash storage.
After your Mac has slept for a few hours, it enters standby mode. Apple computers were released in 2013 and later go into standby mode after they have been sleeping for three hours. Older Macs go into standby mode after one hour of sleep.
The fascinating thing about the standby mode is that without your Mac being plugged in, the computer with a fully charged battery will remain in standby mode for up to thirty days.
The Bottom Line
So, now you know the different sleep modes on your Mac and what they do. Macs sleep by default after a period of inactivity. But you can turn it off if you want your computer to stay on all the time.