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Article ID: 935799 - Last Review: September 1, 2014 - Revision: 2.0

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Symptoms

When you configure power options for the active (current) power plan in Windows Vista or in Windows 7, the changes are not reflected on the System Settings page in the Power Options item in Control Panel.

Note You can access the System Settings page by clicking any of the following links in the left pane of the Power Options page:
  • Require a password on wakeup
  • Choose what the power buttons do
  • Choose what closing the lid does

This behavior does not occur if you are currently using the default, or "preferred," power plan. The preferred power plan is specified in the registry.

Cause

This behavior occurs because the settings that appear on the System Settings page are derived from the registry settings for the preferred power plan.

Changes that you make to the active power plan do not affect the global settings on the System Settings page, unless you are currently using the preferred power plan. Changes that you make on the System Settings page apply to all power plans. These power plans include the active plan and any custom plans that you have created.

Note By default, the preferred power plan is the Balanced plan in Windows Vista and in Windows 7.

More information

Power plans

Power settings in Windows Vista and Windows 7 are based on power plans. A power plan is a collection of hardware settings and system settings that manages how your computer uses power. Power plans can help you save energy, maximize system performance, or achieve a balance between these two goals. Windows Vista and Windows 7 provide the following default plans to help you manage your computer's power:
  • Balanced
    This plan offers full performance when you have to have it. This plan saves power during periods of inactivity.
  • Power saver
    This plan saves power by reducing system performance. This plan can help mobile PC users benefit the most from a single battery charge.
  • High performance
    This plan maximizes system performance and responsiveness. Mobile PC users may notice that battery power does not last as long when they use this plan.
You can change settings for any of these plans, or you can create your own plan by using one of these plans as a starting point.

How to create a power plan

To create a power plan, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start
    Collapse this imageExpand this image
     Start button
    , type Power Options in the Start Search box, and then click Power Options in the Programs list.
  2. On the Select a power plan page, click Create a power plan in the task pane.

    Collapse this imageExpand this image
     User Account Control permission
    If you are prompted for an administrator password or for confirmation, type your password, or click Continue.
  3. On the Create a power plan page, select the plan that is closest to the type of plan that you want to create. For example, if you want the plan to conserve energy, select the Power saver plan.
  4. In the Plan name box, type a name for the plan, and then click Next.
  5. In Change settings, select the display settings and the sleep settings that you want the computer to use when it is running on battery power and when it is plugged in, and then click Create.

    If you are using a mobile PC, your plan appears under Plans on the battery meter. If you are using a desktop computer, your plan appears under Preferred plans.
Note The plan that you created automatically becomes the active plan. To put a different plan into effect, select that plan on the Power Options page.

How to customize a power plan

To customize a power plan, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start
    Collapse this imageExpand this image
     Start button
    , type Power Options in the Start Search box, and then click Power Options in the Programs list.
  2. Click Change plan settings under the plan.
  3. On the Change settings for the plan page, select the display settings and the sleep settings that you want your computer to use, or click Change advanced power settings to change additional settings.
  4. Click OK, or click Save changes to save the changes.

    Make sure that the power plan that you want the computer to use is selected on the Power Options page.

How to use the Powercfg.exe tool to set the active power plan

You can use the Powercfg.exe tool to control power settings and to configure computers to use the hibernate feature or the sleep feature. The Powercfg.exe tool is installed with Windows Vista and with Windows 7.

To set the active power plan by using the Powercfg.exe tool, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start
    Collapse this imageExpand this image
     Start button
    , click All Programs, and then click Accessories.
  2. Right-click Command Prompt, and then click Run as Administrator.

    Collapse this imageExpand this image
     User Account Control permission
    If you are prompted for an administrator password or for confirmation, type your password, or click Continue.
  3. Type the following command, and then press ENTER:
    Powercfg -setactive Scheme_GUID
    Note Scheme_GUID represents the scheme GUID. To determine the GUID for all existing power schemes, type Powercfg /List at the command prompt, and then press ENTER.
For more information about the Powercfg.exe tool, visit the following Microsoft Web page:
http://technet2.microsoft.com/WindowsVista/en/library/1d58b934-f56a-4796-b2df-7be2eb9c03bc1033.mspx?mfr=true (http://technet2.microsoft.com/WindowsVista/en/library/1d58b934-f56a-4796-b2df-7be2eb9c03bc1033.mspx?mfr=true)

How to use the registry to set the preferred power plan

Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
322756  (http://support.microsoft.com/kb/322756/ ) How to back up and restore the registry in Windows


To change the preferred power plan, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start
    Collapse this imageExpand this image
     Start button
    , type regedit in the Start Search box, and then click regedit.exe in the Programs list.

    Collapse this imageExpand this image
     User Account Control permission
    If you are prompted for an administrator password or for confirmation, type your password, or click Continue.
  2. Locate and then click the following registry subkey:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\explorer\ControlPanel\NameSpace\{025A5937-A6BE-4686-A844-36FE4BEC8B6D}
  3. Right-click PreferredPlan, and then click Modify.
  4. In the Value data box, enter one of the following:
    • Type 381b4222-f694-41f0-9685-ff5bb260df2e to use the Balanced plan.
    • Type a1841308-3541-4fab-bc81-f71556f20b4a to use the Power saver plan.
    • Type 8c5e7fda-e8bf-4a96-9a85-a6e23a8c635c to use the High performance plan.
    You can also type the power scheme GUID for a custom power plan that you have created. To determine the GUID for all existing power schemes, type Powercfg /List at the command prompt, and then press ENTER.
  5. Click OK, and then exit Registry Editor.
Note The specified power scheme in the PreferredPlan registry value cannot be explicitly shown in any UI. Regardless of this registry setting, the "(Recommended)" suffix is always added to the Balanced plan on the Power Options page.

For help with power consumption and battery life problems in Windows Vista, visit the following Microsoft Web page:
Fix problems in which power consumption is more than expected or the battery life is short (http://support.microsoft.com/gp/windows_battery_power_settings)

Applies to
  • Windows Vista Ultimate
  • Windows Vista Enterprise
  • Windows Vista Business
  • Windows Vista Home Premium
  • Windows Vista Home Basic
  • Windows Vista Starter
  • Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Enterprise 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Business 64-bit Edition
  • Windows Vista Home Premium 64-bit Edition
  • Windows 7 Enterprise
  • Windows 7 Home Basic
  • Windows 7 Home Premium
  • Windows 7 Professional
  • Windows 7 Starter
  • Windows 7 Ultimate
  • Windows 8 Enterprise
  • Windows 8 Pro
  • Windows 8
  • Windows 8.1
  • Windows 8.1 Enterprise
  • Windows 8.1 Pro
Keywords: 
kbtshoot kbprb kbexpertiseinter kbwinvistapostrtmfix KB935799
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