[Windows 8] How to enable Hibernate on your computer or tablet

Hibernate is a very usable feature that was introduced in Windows XP. It helps you save your current tasks and documents and windows in their current state prior to shutting down your computer or tablet; therefore the next time you start Windows, all your tasks and documents and windows are there for you as if you never even shut down in the first place. However, in Windows 8 Microsoft hides this feature somewhere that you can’t find out unless you read this article. Continue treading this article to learn how to enable Hibernate on your Windows 8 computer or tablet.


To enable the ability to Hibernate on Windows 8:

  • Open “Settings Search” (if using a keyboard, press Windows + I hotkeys; if on a tablet, bring up the Charms bar by swiping on the right-side of your screen and tapping “Search”).
  • Type “Power Options” in the box.
  • Choose “Change what the power buttons do” in the results that popup on the left.

  • When you click/tap on “Change what the power buttons do”, “System Settings” will open. From “System Settings” click or tap on “Change settings that are currently unavailable”. (You may be asked to confirm your actions if UAC is enabled — click/tap yes or OK.)

  • Finally, find “Shutdown settings” on the window that loads and check the box for “Hibernate”.

Done! Now the Hibernate option will be available when you go to close your PC or tablet, such as in the menu where you choose Power button in Settings Panel.


I don’t know why Microsoft hides this feature so strictly. My guess is almost all Windows 8 users won’t be able to figure out how to enable Hibernate. Now that you have read this article, you are one of the few that know — enjoy!

Related Posts

  • Neil Berman

    @Hoàng Tú:

    It was suggested to me by someone that when you HIBERNATE (as opposed to putting the computer to SLEEP), there is NO power going to the mother board. Consequently, the CPU is unresponsive to commands from the keyboard or mouse. Any thoughts about that?

  • JEllery

    For some reason I have no tick-box for hibernation, even after using cmd to enable hibernation. Any ideas why this is?

    As for how hibernation behaves: the computer stores all of the data from the RAM onto the hard drive before shutting down. Then, on start up, the computer simply unloads all of this information to pick up where you left off.

    Also, the reason that sometimes the computer wakes up at the tap of the mouse of keyboard and sometimes it doesn’t is because of the device settings. If you go into control panel, look at device settings and then right click the mouse or keyboard, you can see if it has the ability to wake the computer from sleep. As can external hard drives – and even internet cables.

    Hope that helps, anyone got any ideas about my problem?

  • Ashraf

    @DoktorThomas: Why’s that?
    @Kerry: You are welcome!

  • Ashraf

    @Neil Berman: In my experience, #1 varies from computer to computer. I’m not sure why but my previous laptop would wake with tap of mouse but my newer laptop requires me to hit the power button.

  • Hoàng Tú

    @Neil Berman:
    I’m sorry because I haven’t used a desktop PC for a long time so I can’t remember how Sleep acts on it. As in the laptop, I can’t wake up my computer by tapping the mouse, I have to press a key or press the power button to do that. However, Sleep and Hibernate works the same way in both Windows 7 and Windows 8.

  • Neil Berman

    Two pieces of information are missing:

    1 – How do you awaken the computer? (Windows 8) Do you need to push the power button on the tower or can you awaken the computer by tapping the mouse or any key?

    2 – How does HIBERNATE or SLEEP work on Windows 7? I can put my computer to sleep by pressing a key, but I haven’t been able to figure how to awaken it without pressing the power button on the tower. I have seen some computer demonstrations where it can be awakened by touching a key or the mouse. This is much easier if you have already sat down and think your screen saver has auto-shutdown and then find that your computer is actually sleeping and you have to get up after you’re all set up and wake up the computer at the tower. Maybe that feature doesn’t work on all computers by design.

  • Kerry

    Thank you for the info and keeping us in the now

  • DoktorThomas

    A better feature is permanently remove hibernate and its code from windows OS. What an annoyance.