Find out what's draining your battery with Windows 8's Sleep Study

The new tool diagnoses what's using your battery life, while your computer sleeps

There are sleep studies for people, and now there's a hardware sleep study. This one is built into Windows 8.x to tell you how well your system slept and what devices and apps were most active (or using the most energy) during its sleep. It's like a Fitbit for your computer.

According to Windows' blog post about it:

Sleep Study tells you how well the system slept and how much activity it experienced during that time. While in the sleep state, the system is still doing some work, albeit at a lower frequency. Because the resulting battery drain is not easily perceptible (you can’t see it draining), we built the Sleep Study tool in Windows 8.1 to allow you to track what is happening. We thought of simply using traditional logging to do this, but ironically, the logging itself would drain the battery. With this in mind, we designed the Sleep Study tool to minimize its own impact on battery life, while tracking the battery draining activities.

The Sleep Study report will give you details on the system, a battery drain chart, top duration activities, and battery information.

Unfortunately, not all Windows 8.1 systems support this (and InstantGo, the platform Sleep Study depends on). To find out if yours does, go to a command prompt and enter powercfg /a  then check if Standby (Connected) is available.

If you're a lucky owner of a system that supports Sleep Study reports, check the reports to see what's draining your battery even while your computer is sleeping. These include things like Windows Update, USB peripherals, and bad device drivers.

Read more of Melanie Pinola’s Tech IT Out blog and follow the latest IT news at ITworld. Follow Melanie on Twitter at @melaniepinola. For the latest IT news, analysis and how-tos, follow ITworld on Twitter and Facebook. 

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