Configuring Power Management Settings Using the Power Options Utility in Control Panel
The Power Options utility in Control Panel provides a central location where users can configure how their computer balances power consumption against performance, create and manage power plans, configure the behavior of the power buttons on the computer, and configure other advanced settings. In Windows 7, this utility has been enhanced by hiding the High Performance plan by default under the Show Additional Plans option.
This was done to encourage users to conserve energy by not making the High Performance plan as visible as the Balanced and Power Saver plans.
Selecting either of the top two links on the left opens a screen where the user can configure the behavior of the power button on the computer and require that a password be specified when returning from Sleep mode.
Beginning with Windows Vista, standard (non-Administrator) users can manage most power management settings on their computers. In earlier versions of Windows, users had to be local administrators to manage power settings on their computers. In addition, in Windows Vista and later versions, there is a single set of power plans for the computer. All users have access to the same power settings across the computer, helping to avoid situations in which power policy changes based on which user, if any, is currently logged on. This is a departure from Windows XP, where one portion of the power policy was specified on a per-user basis and the remainder on a per-computer basis.
To manage advanced power options, select either of the lower two links on the upper left of the main Power Options screen and then select Change Advanced Power Settings to open the Advanced Settings tab for Power Options.
Advanced power settings provide more detailed control over power consumption and the ability to change some settings not displayed elsewhere in Power Options. Additional settings include the power-saving mode for wireless adapters, USB selective suspend, PCI Express Active-State Power Management, and Search and Indexing activity on the system.
Note that some systems (particularly mobile computers) may have additional power settings in advanced power settings. For example, third-party drivers and applications may add new power settings. Common third-party settings include power management options for video adapters.
Note When you select Change Settings That Are Currently Unavailable and respond to the UAC prompt, no new items will appear in the list, which can seem confusing. However, some options that could not be edited before can now be edited.
Power-Saving Modes for Wireless Network Adapters
On the Advanced Settings tab for Power Options, four different power-saving modes are displayed under Wireless Network Adapter (the On Battery settings are relevant only on mobile systems and computers with batteries):
- Maximum Performance
- Low Power Saving
- Medium Power Saving
- Maximum Power Saving
If Maximum Performance is chosen, the wireless adapter will not use any power management features but will communicate with the wireless access point at the maximum speed. However, if Maximum Power Saving is chosen, the wireless adapter will conserve energy by communicating with the wireless access point at a lower speed. This reduces wireless performance but conserves power and helps extend battery life on mobile PCs. The Low Power Saving and Medium Power Saving settings balance power savings and performance.
Note You can configure additional advanced power settings by using the Powercfg. exe command. See the section titled "Configuring Power Management Settings Using the Powercfg Utility" later in the tutorial for more information.
In this tutorial:
- Managing Devices and Services
- Understanding Device Installation and Management
- Device Enhancements in Windows 7
- Display Enhancements in Windows 7
- Understanding Device Installation
- Driver Store and Driver Packaging
- Driver Staging vs Installation
- Driver Staging and Installation Process
- Detailed Installation Process
- Managing Driver Packages
- Using PnPutil.exe
- Using Dism.exe
- Driver Signing
- Driver Ranking
- Installing and Using Devices
- Enhancements to the Device Installation Experience in Windows 7
- Scenario 1: Driver found in Driver Store
- Scenario 2: Driver found on Windows Update
- Scenario 3: Driver in Driver Store, But Better Driver on Windows Update
- Scenario 5: No Driver Can Be Found for the device
- Scenario 6: Vendor -supplied media is available
- Scenario 7: Additional Device Software is Available For Download from vendor
- Configuring Device Installation Settings
- Using the Devices And Printers Folder
- Understanding Device Stage
- Understanding the Device Experience Architecture
- Device Containers
- Device display object
- Device Metadata System
- Managing Device Installation Using Group Policy
- Managing Device Installation Behavior
- Managing Driver Installation Behavior
- Blocking Installation of Removable Devices
- Managing Device Redirection Behavior
- Troubleshooting Device Installation
- Using Windows Error Reporting
- Using the SetupAPI Log File
- Using Driver INF Files
- Using Device Manager Error Codes
- Using Driver Verifier
- Repairing Driver Store Corruption
- Repairing Index File Corruption
- Understanding Power Management
- Power Management Enhancements in Windows 7
- New Power Policies in Windows 7
- Configuring Power Management Settings
- Configuring Power Management Settings Using the Power Options Utility in Control Panel
- Configuring Power Management Settings Using Group Policy
- Configuring Power Management Settings Using the Powercfg Utility
- Understanding Services
- Service Enhancements in Windows 7
- Managing Services
- Managing Services Using Task Manager
- Managing Services Using the Sc.exe Command