Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Difference between Shut down, Hibernate and Suspend options

The “Hibernate” option is a tool capable of saving our current session and then powering down, unlike the “Shut down” option, which closes all open applications and then powers the system off. Here, we compare the Shut down, Hibernate and Suspend options and then try to figure out which one to use for a particular session. 




Parameter Shut down Hibernate Suspend
Powers down the system Yes Yes No
Closes all open applications Yes No No
Consumes power No No Yes
Relative time to power down*
Highest
Moderate

Least
Time to wake up*
Highest

Moderate

Least
Thus, particularly useful when Hardware is to repaired or replaced The system is not in use for a long period of time, say, more than 2 hours The system is not in use for a short period of time, say, upto 2 hours and the system has enough battery power to stay alive




*Actual time depends on the environment like the processor, RAM, Operating System under consideration, viruses, etc.

It should be that, the “Hibernate” option saves the current session to Hard disk, on one of the partitions on which the Operating System(Microsoft Windows or Canonical Ubuntu, etc) resides. So, when you hibernate, the Operating System locks the partition and makes is unopenable from the other operating systems, in a multi-boot computer, until the partition is either mounted as a read-only partition, or the OS that hibernated is resumed and shut down.


For example, if you have a computer that has Microsoft Windows 7 and Ubuntu 12.10 dual booted and you hibernate from Windows, you may not be able to open the “C” drive until you open Windows and use “Shut down”. This means if your Windows accidentally crashes, recovering data from the “C” drive would become a bit complicated, unless you apply some kind of work around like copying files after mounting the partition as read-only.