How to enable Hibernate in Windows 10 or Windows 11

Shaant Minhas

Dell 2-in-1 Windows Laptop

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Normally when you think of moving away from your PC for a while, a shutdown is probably the first thing that comes to mind before you actually leave the desk. Sleep mode might probably be a close second.

But what do you do if you’d like to resume your work from where you left it, instead of starting off everything from scratch? While you can utilize sleep mode in this case, if battery or power consumption is a concern, you’d be better off using the Windows Hibernate.

In this guide, we’ll take a deep dive highlighting how you can enable hibernate in Windows. So, let’s jump right in.

What is Windows Hibernate?

Before we dive into the actual tutorial about enabling Windows hibernate, though, let’s quickly go over what exactly Hibernation is and how it operates.

An alternative to default shutdown, Windows Hibernate is a way to save your current work and Windows state on your hard drive for retrieval later on. So, when you turn on your PC again, the information stored on your drive is transferred back to your main memory, and you can then resume your work from where you left off.

This is where it differs from Sleep, which saves all your data in the RAM. And, in contrast to a normal Shutdown, Hibernate gets your PC back to where it was in just a few seconds. So, you can think of it as the best of Shutdown and Sleep.

If you’re curious, you can check out a previous post of ours, where we cover the difference between hibernate, sleep and shutdown.

Therefore, as a rule, choose Hibernate over Shutdown (or Sleep) when you’re moving away from your screen for a short span of time (and you also need to be economical with your battery.)

Note: As the main reason for using Hibernate is to cut back on excess battery loss, Microsoft has limited this feature mostly to laptops. So, if you’re running a Windows desktop computer and can’t find the option to hibernate, that’s probably the main reason, as Microsoft says on their blog here.

How to enable Hibernate in Windows 10

By default, Hibernate is not available at the Power option in the Start menu search bar in Windows 10; you have to manually enable it instead. Here’s how:

  1. Open the Windows Settings (Windows key + I), and select System > Power & Sleep > Additional power settings.
  2. Click on Choose what the power button does and click on Change settings that are currently unavailable.
  3. Under the Shutdown settings, select the Hibernate checkbox and click on Save Changes.

power settings in windows 10

turning on hibernate in windows 10 settings


Now, when you navigate to the Power button again, you will have the option to Hibernate your Windows 10, right along with Shutdown and Sleep. From here, you can easily hibernate your Windows 10.

And that’s it, folks. As soon as you click on Hibernate, all of your current work will be saved into the hard drive and your PC will turn off.

Press the power button on your laptop to bring back your laptop from hibernation.

How to enable Hibernate in Windows 11

Again, the process to hibernate Windows 11 is fundamentally similar to Windows 10 hibernation process from above, even if the specifics differ by a little.

Here, too, you’ll have to turn on Hibernation for it to show up at the power option.

To get started, go to the Start menu search bar, type in ‘control panel,’ and select the Best match.

  1. On the Control Panel, select System and Security.
  2. From there, click on Change what the power buttons do.
  3. Now click on Change Settings that are currently unavailable.
  4. Under the Shutdown settings section, check the hibernate option, and click on Save changes.


changing the power option

activating the hibernate option from shutdown settings

That’s it.

This will enable the Hibernate settings on your Windows 11 PC. Click on the Power button at the Start menu search bar, and you’ll see the option for Hibernate available on your screen.

enable hibernate in windows

As soon as you click on the above option, your Windows 11 will go into hibernation. To get back in your workflow again, all you have to do is press the power button as you do at a normal Windows startup.

Enable Hibernate in Windows 10/11

Using Windows Hibernate is your best bet if you are going away from your computer for a while. Instead of turning it off altogether and starting off from scratch, the Windows Hibernate will simply save your settings to the secondary drive and bring it up whenever the computer is powered up again. This is especially true if you have some unfinished project that you want to resume as soon as you come back to your computer.

We’ll also like to invite you to check out our separate guide on how to enable Ultimate Performance power mode to give your PC an extra boost