Windows has always been a battery hog
Look at the new Smartbooks getting 10 hours + battery usage on each charge.
Laptop owners upgrading their Windows XP and Windows Vista machines to Windows 7 are complaining that Microsoft's new OS has severely reduced their available battery life. One user tells The Reg that after upgrading his circa 2007 HP notebook from Vista to Windows 7, the machine's battery life dropped from two hours to a half …
It's relative. If you have a road-warrior desktop replacement which is over three years old, three hours would be excellent! If you have a current netbook with all of the power saving features enabled, it's not. Remember that the eeePC 701 (the original 4GB SSD one) was only quoted as having about 3.5 hours of battery life with the high capacity battery, and that was only three and a bit years ago!
My trusty thinkpad T30, which is about 6 years old, gets about 1hr 20min. When it was new, the handbook said that it should have been 3-3.5 hours. If I still got 3 hours I would regard it as excellent, but as I only use it on batteries infrequently (part of the problem), it's no issue (and being a Thinkpad, I could always get a Chinese replacement battery for about 30 quid if it was).
Someone doesn't know their French.
So there's a battery alerter in Windows that drains the battery? Hmmm, what does that remind me of... Oh yeah! The "feature" in Windows Mobile that turns on the screen when your battery is dying, then keeps the screen on to make sure it dies as quickly as possible.
I am getting better battery life out of my Acer laptop under Windows 7 than I did with XP or Vista.
It's three years old and still on the original battery. Good for nearly 3 hours with wifi connected.
I was going to upgrade to a new machine this month, but Windows 7 has made the thing a whole lot snappier and good for another year.
...but I do (occasionally) look like one. And "Wala!" never fails to get my vibrating, arse-faced robo-goat. I expect "Tada!" sounds a bit unsophisticated. And suspiciously foreign, perhaps. Not that I'm lobbying for "Tada!".
Where's the "Wala!" icon? And some music to put it to? (I suggest a minim at the very least. Though I'd want a crotchet for this rant).
Why the cock is the OS forcing a shutdown if the juice is still flowing? This isn't some server or mission critical set-up (which Windows is not certified for anyway); it's a freakin' laptop! Gone are the days when a sudden power loss would knacker a HDD...hello...auto-park!
If someone is dumb enough to run their battery into the ground and cause a sudden power loss and thus losing their work....that's their chuffin' look-out.
There's dumb, there's dumber and even dumberer.
Then there's your average Windows user.
Because it'd be a bit tricky to force a shutdown once the juice has stopped flowing, wouldn't it... In this context, "shutdown" should be interpreted as "closing down the OS in a controlled way so as to avoid any loss of data or filesystem integrity, allowing the system to restart without error once power is restored".
Take it from someone with personal experience of seeing an XP desktop PC knocked out by a power cut, which then blue screened on every attempt to restart it once power was restored, resisting every attempt to repair whatever damage had been done to the filesystem, and ending up requiring a clean reinstallation of XP and all third-party apps - given the choice of letting the OS enforce a controlled shutdown when it thinks the battery level is getting too low for comfort, or risking losing more than just the last few minutes of unsaved data when the system shuts down without warning, I'll happily leave the OS in charge here.
Let's face it, back in the day Win9x would fire off ScanDisk on a restart after a power outage. XP is total shit in that not only is ScanDisk severely broken (guys, learn the command line and use ChkDsk, it actually notices things ScanDisk ignored) but when the system loses power unexpectedly during a disc write, it will boot as far as loading the NTFS driver, then it will bluescreen with UNMOUNTABLE_BOOT_VOLUME. Yeah, like the one it is actually booting FROM up until that point? It's a corrupted map. It's the time when ChkDsk SHOULD be invoked, automatically, if XP had any clue whatsoever.
But to reinstall XP and all the stuff? Aïe! No!
Google for "Hirren's Boot CD". Boot off the CD. Select to boot DOS. Choose the one with NTFS support. It will ask if you want to run its own ChkDsk. Let it fly. It will find and fix the error. Shut down, restart. Your file might be damaged but XP will be fine.
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I'm voting for deliberate malapropism too simply because of all the grammar Nazis who can't take a joke. Whoever thought that a Windows user could have had a sense of humour?
(I love posting in internet arguments in reply to posts correcting others' posts. Double bonus in this case for trans-forum pedantry. Now someone needs to 'STFU' or mention a famous dictator.)
Haven't you got a tablet thingy to worship somewhere?!
I own 4 macs and I think they are great machine, but they still have their own problems, the heat coming out of my Macbook annoys me no end. Nothing like Steve's baby frying my nads when I am on a train!
Perhaps try taking the blinkers off once in a while fanboi!
Once again the reg resorts to "daily mail" tactics and a bunch recationary "dail mail" readers go off on yet another anti microsoft tirade based on OPINION rather than FACTS. And no I'm not an MS fanboi - I just object to morons passing judgement when they don't know the FACTS. Grow up!
Windows 7 RTM has been available for almost 6 months now (since August 6th 2009 from Technet) - and of the millions of people who've installed it, a few random people have encountered problems?
And this is news?
By the way, Vista SP2 is called Vista SP2. It was released on May 26, 2009. Not that abject ignorance about the topic in hand ever stopped anyone else posting a comment to ElReg.
Windows 7 is not burning more juice, it is incorrectly saying that the battery is flat when it is not.
My Fujitsu tablet started doing exactly this when I upgraded to Windows 7. Runs for ten minutes or so and then tells me the battery is critically low. Boot it into Ubuntu and I've got 3 hours left.
Hope they fix it or guess which OS I will be booting into by default.
just change the default action away from sleep / hibernate / shutdown when the battery reaches 3(?)% to do nothing. ok - it will just die when the battery is actually dead but you can at least use the blooming thing for a bit longer. I haven't noticed this problem on my HP laptop with the RC on it - does anyone know if the problem goes away if you plug in and then remove the power when the warnings start (giving it a short burst of power) - does it stay at critical or go back up to reasonable levels?
annoying yes, but that means the battery has remaining juice in it to either a/ chuck data at the hard disk during hibernation (a power-hungry action that may take a few moments to kick in), b/ stay in standby for a few hours more (using a trickle of energy to keep the RAM refreshed), so that whilst you're waiting for your flight to land, or to find a plug, or buy a replacement charger or dealing with whatever emergency means you've run on to emergency reserve (going below 10% can be harmful to battery lifetime) the important document you were working on and only had maybe 20 minutes more work to do on it (... not the 5 or so that a typical 3% charge represents) won't be destroyed - either by you having forgotten to save, or that bit of the disk being garbled when the power finally fails.
As a very few of you have said, Windows is not consuming more juice, its just falsely warning that the battery is at low voltage. Depending on your power settings windows MAY turn off (or hibernate) you laptop at a certain level. The issue is that although in reality the battery is "fine" windows thinks its not. MS admits this as is clearly explained in the article.
And im glad I read this as my Acer Ferrari 4000 has done just this sine WIN7 was installed. Thanks EL reg, I wont be buying that new battery then!!!!
I have a 2 year old HP dv9000; and was on the beta and the RC with no problems whatsoever. dish out £30 to upgrade to W7 Pro (student discount) and all of a sudden there is this problem, as well as an issue with the sound card (or to be more precise how hp's quicktouch buttons interact with it).
Ran powercfg /energy to generate a report, and it seems that the full capacity of the battery is being misreported, leading windows to believe that the battery is only charging to about 40% capacity, which triggers the alert. Personally the only thing I seem to have noticed in commmon between the laptops is the BIOS (Phoenix). I've also contacted HP support, and they just didnt have a clue WTF was going on.
One Service Pack 1 with fries please!
<winge>two hours to a half hour</winge>
They probably just lost the infernal intervals on Vista where nothing happens for no apparent reason during which it can't even muster an hourglass :-(
Also any hardware vendor['s bespoke battery management software is going to get blown away in an OS reinstall.
Or maybe the batteries are just four years older than when they timed it with Vista?
My Fujitsu Xi 2528 started blinking battery warnings and shutting down (for "shutting down" read "turning off completely without shutting down") after 5 minutes a couple of weeks ago. I had presumed that my battery was dead and was about to order a new one at £90 so many thanks El Reg for saving me some hard earned cash. Roll on the patch for this.
I run a Sony Vaio and get 8+ hrs out of it when I put Windows into power save profile, yes I loose all the funky aero stuff etc but not really that bothered when I just want it last all day.
When I run full fat version i.e. all aero etc battery lasts about 5 hours.
These figures are both better than what I used to get on vista, most pepole I know that have switched to 7 have also had the same experience.... battery life is better in 7.
Of the poeple I know that didnt have a positive experience first time round it was because they had power profiles that run at full speed and had missing or incorrect drivers.
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"But the company also says that in some cases, the new tool may be working properly. In other words, if it says your battery needs replacing, it may need replacing. But for so many laptops owners posting to TechNet, this is clearly not the case."
Brilliant! I'll just put warnings in *my* OS saying the hard drive's bad, battery's bad, the computer's too slow, and you need more RAM. The warnings will all be true SOMETIMES.
"Also any hardware vendor['s bespoke battery management software is going to get blown away in an OS reinstall."
No it's not, this stuff is handled by ACPI, it's in the system BIOS.
So... 2 possibilities.
1) Windows 7 has ACPI bugs. I won't rag on them for this (as long as they fix it promptly), ACPI spec is fairly complex, and it's interactions with the OS are too.
2) Microsoft's umm.. Microsoftian ploys are backfiring on them. Microsoft provides an ACPI compiler that produces (slightly) non-standard ACPI, this initially caused problems for non-Windows ACPI implementations (until they made them "bug compatible" with the Windows ACPI interpreter).. if Windows 7's ACPI code was redone maybe it doesn't deal with this. Also the ACPI table will check the OS... Windows 2000, Windows XP, "Windows XP SP1", XP SP2, Vista shows as "Windows 2006", etc. Often times these tables are just plain broken if the OS is unrecognized (and some few check for "Linux" and return broken tables too!). It has been suggested Microsoft encouraged these broken tables, so Windows would run smooth while other OSes crap out on the same machine. On these BIOSes, Windows 7 will probably not show up as "Windows 2006", it'll be unrecognized, and a broken table could be returned -- they are being hoisted by their own petard. The 3 solutions. 1) BIOS updates all around (to fix the ACPI tables). 2) The Linux solution, it now claims it is Windows 2000, XP, 2003, *and* Vista for ACPI purposes, to make sure it doesn't get some broken "default" or even worse broken "Linux" table. 3) Least attractive solution -- Linux supports loading custom ACPI tables, so I suppose Windows could too -- people will retrieve the broken ACPI tables, fix the bugs, and post the fixed table online to load at boot time.
Windows 7 Ultimate 32bit, Asus N10 with 2GB RAM - no problems. Have been running Win 7 since RTM version, haven't seen any behaviour like this, use the dear little N10 a lot on trains / planes on battery power. Still getting 5-6 hours with the Nvidia chipset activated and running Autodesk Revit (All your RAM are belong Autodesk arrrr har!)
So, no problems here.
MS fanboi rapidly becoming Apple fanboi, too I might add.
The last time I heard that was from Omid Jalili in Hammersmith. Does he read The Reg?
Win 7 has worked okay on the Samsung NC10 that several variants of Ubuntu have had difficulty with. They seem a matched pair (not sure that is a good thing really).
What a pi55er that M$ are still making the cock-ups that they have always. Fewer, perhaps. But they still have the talent for breaking the simplest but most impacting. I'd cop the complete arse if I had bought a replacement battery on the strength of Win 7's dubious warning. One wonders how many people have done just that ...
However as for better battery life I would dispute this. Under XP the CPU hardly ran unless I was doing a lot of stuff. Under vista and W7 it runs constantly. With near double of background processes its going to draw more power - my powerpack squeaks when its been asked to supply more power so under XP - quiet, under WV or W7 squeaking!!
Its more likely the battery technology has improved the running time rather then W7 making the improvements.
Having run my lappy for a few years now and still being happy with its XP performance, my upgrade plan is currently along the lines of doubling (and maxing) the RAM, laying in a second replacement battery, getting the last and largest of the 2.5" IDE disks (as its too old for SATA) and upgrading to a middling version of Win 7, skipping Vista entirely. Beats mucking about with a netbook, so long as 7 can deal with i915 graphics.
This kind of malarkey could be well annoying though...... does it just affect well worn batteries that are maybe halfway through their useful life (as my current one is), or all of 'em? Or is it a specifically Vista upgrade thing that can be ignored?
I'm reading all the quotes of battery life in various situations. Let's just say my eeePC901 XP gets around six and a half hours out of a charge. More if I turn off WiFi, like when I pop in the SD card containing all the MP4 stuff my PVR has recorded off satellite TV.
Seriously, what use to me is a computer that can maybe manage an hour and a half and that's NOT when the OS is misreporting reality?
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