Windows 8 "Hybrid Boot" discovered

We've seen a steady flow of Windows 8 news this past month, and it's not ready to stop yet. Earlier this week an old build of Windows 8 was leaked online, and many flocked to download the bits. Today, a site has uncovered a feature that appears to replace the operating systems default shutdown behavior so that the computer can start up even quicker.

Windows 8 Italia uncovered the feature which looks like it is a replacement for the current Windows shutdown behavior. The feature uses advanced hibernation functionality when the computer is shut down (instead of actually shutting it down) and allows the machine to start up faster. The article on Windows 8 Italia actually is a troubleshooting reference for a problem which apparently is caused by the new feature when two operating systems are installed. 

The feature is found by typing "power button" into the start menu, and then clicking "Change settings that are currently unavailable." It appears that Microsoft is changing the behavior quietly as it strives to decrease loading times when compared to Windows 7. 

Microsoft is expected to launch Windows 8 in 2012 with the current rumored retail availability for January 2013. Another rumor also suggests that there may be a beta as soon as this fall.

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For some reason the fans don't shut down / start at the correct speed when I use any sort of standby or hibernate on my desktop. Might try it again someday, or fix it......

Nice however 13 seconds load time on an SSD with Windows 7 isn't terribad. Excluding BIOS load time that is. My work PC is so pathetic though (Dell) that I set it to automatically switch on at 8am so by the time I am in the office everything starts up otherwise i need 15 minutes

Would someone mind explaining what's the difference bewteen hybrid-sleep (which is in W7) and the proposed hybrid-boot. Thank you.

I always use hybernate for shutdown, and restart my pc for like twice a month. (once because of Windows Update). I've always wondered why this wasn't the default shutdown type because it works great (in 99% of the cases) and works pretty fast even on a hdd.

So I guess this makes hybernate more accessable and keeps compatibility so their aint any apps not working after turning a pc on. I guess we will see how exactly it's going to work when the beta hits...

Peter van Dam said,
I always use hybernate for shutdown, and restart my pc for like twice a month. (once because of Windows Update). I've always wondered why this wasn't the default shutdown type because it works great (in 99% of the cases) and works pretty fast even on a hdd.

Agreed.. I shut down only if moving the machine or if I am cleaning/changing a part.

Peter van Dam said,
I always use hybernate for shutdown, and restart my pc for like twice a month. (once because of Windows Update). I've always wondered why this wasn't the default shutdown type because it works great (in 99% of the cases) and works pretty fast even on a hdd.

So I guess this makes hybernate more accessable and keeps compatibility so their aint any apps not working after turning a pc on. I guess we will see how exactly it's going to work when the beta hits...

Same here, I use Hibernate, its the default on my Start menu Power Option, way more convenient and fast. Shutdown is only for installing updates or reconfiguring hardware, in fact, I use Restart just for patch Tuesdays.

It logs offs (which makes programs close) and then hibernates. Only difference from hibernate is it closes programs. I don't understand what purpose this serves except that maybe people who don't really use or know hibernate and are used to shutting down will realise the benefits of hibernation over shutdown. Doesn't look like a new feature which offers some major benefit to hibernation which in fact preserves your open programs.

xpclient said,
It logs offs (which makes programs close) and then hibernates. Only difference from hibernate is it closes programs. I don't understand what purpose this serves except that maybe people who don't really use or know hibernate and are used to shutting down will realise the benefits of hibernation over shutdown. Doesn't look like a new feature which offers some major benefit to hibernation which in fact preserves your open programs.

True, but it may also be a prelogin saved stated that is used instead of the system state after the logoff. This would be a consistent and clean boot, with no driver errors or other locks retained.

If it truly is just a logoff-hibernate, it is only consolidating two actions that could be scripted now.

It's already implemented on asrock mobos as instant boot. Tried it and I just don't use it anymore. It boots instantly but shutdown is taking twice the time at least

Buzz99 said,
It's already implemented on asrock mobos as instant boot. Tried it and I just don't use it anymore. It boots instantly but shutdown is taking twice the time at least

Who cares how long their computer takes to shutdown?... I just hit shutdown and walk away generally...

_DP said,

Who cares how long their computer takes to shutdown?... I just hit shutdown and walk away generally...

Good point, same here - Why should I wait until my PC shutdown? Just press the button, I really don't care if it shut down instantly or after 30 minutes.

If you have a laptop and you need to shutdown fast before getting on an airplane, or off at the next train stop, you very much do care!

smithy_dll said,
If you have a laptop and you need to shutdown fast before getting on an airplane, or off at the next train stop, you very much do care!

Maybe you want to hibernate instead?

hibernate!=shutdown. If I want to turn off the computer, I do it, because I dont want pay more bill than Im actually doing. And hibernate is already done. Whats the point to play with the words?

ThePitt said,
hibernate!=shutdown. If I want to turn off the computer, I do it, because I dont want pay more bill than Im actually doing. And hibernate is already done. Whats the point to play with the words?
You're confusing hibernate with sleep. Hibernate saves the state to the hard drive and then totally powers off the system whereas sleep puts the system into a low-power state (also saving the state if hybrid sleep is enabled). Sleep consumes power (with or without hybrid sleep) but hibernate does not use any power because the system is literally turned off. You can unplug it or whatever without losing your state.

This implementation sounds similar to hibernate but presumably tweaked to make it a bit faster (hibernate is currently faster than a standard start up but noticeably slower than a resume from sleep).

They are having so much marketing of Windows 8, even before the product has been released. A post for every feature that is confirmed or rumored! That is microsoft's magic.

With all these innovative features being revealed (for what it seems like day after day), Windows 8 looks like it will be worth the $300 investment. (Money had already been saved anyway).

Mr. Dee said,
With all these innovative features being revealed (for what it seems like day after day), Windows 8 looks like it will be worth the $300 investment. (Money had already been saved anyway).

Dude you DO understand that's RETAIL pricing, right? And nobody in thier right mind pays retail for windows when you can just go to newegg and get windows 7 ult for like 160 bucks right, or windows 7 home premium for just over a Benjamin right? Why save 300 dollars for an os that is not going to be out for at least a year and then why pay retail when it's not needed.

thequestor said,

Dude you DO understand that's RETAIL pricing, right? And nobody in thier right mind pays retail for windows when you can just go to newegg and get windows 7 ult for like 160 bucks right, or windows 7 home premium for just over a Benjamin right? Why save 300 dollars for an os that is not going to be out for at least a year and then why pay retail when it's not needed.

OEM versions of Windows 7 are identical to Full License Retail versions except for the following:

- OEM versions do not offer any free Microsoft direct support from Microsoft support personnel

- OEM licenses are tied to the very first computer you install and activate it on

- OEM versions allow all hardware upgrades except for an upgrade to a different model motherboard

- OEM versions cannot be used to directly upgrade from an older Windows operating system

OEM licenses are to be installed by professional system manufacturers only. Under Microsoft's OEM License Agreement, they are not to be sold to end-users under any circumstance, and are to be preinstalled on a computer using the OEM Preinstallation Kit (OPK) before shipment to the customer, and must include at the very least the manufacturer's support contact information. They are, therefore, designed for installation only on a single computer and are not transferable, even if the original computer is no longer in use. This is not usually an issue for users who purchase new computer systems, because most pre-assembled systems ship with a preinstalled operating system. There are few circumstances where Microsoft will allow the transfer of an OEM license from one non-functioning system to another, but the OEM System Builder License Agreement (SBLA), as well as the OEM End User License Agreement (EULA) do not contain any allowance for this, so it is entirely up to Microsoft's discretion, depending on the situation

I only buy the best, Windows 7 Home Premium, is good for most, but I need the most complete edition of Windows for my work environment.

Mr. Dee said,

OEM versions of Windows 7 are identical to Full License Retail versions except for the following:

Technically you can't upgrade the motherboard, but if you call Microsoft, they should activate it for you, just say it had to be RMA'd. You can still buy 2 OEM licenses for the cost of one retail one.

Thanks neowin! It's present in 7850 but I could not get it to turn off. It stops you from booting into a different OS if you dual-boot with this. But damn does it boot fast.

s3n4te said,
I have been using hibernate instead of shutdown every since win 7 because it is so much faster to resume.

In my case, i use sleep instead of hibernate and i have a uptime of 6 days and running.

Magallanes said,

In my case, i use sleep instead of hibernate and i have a uptime of 6 days and running.

sleep kinda drains the battery after awhile

Nice. Might try it when Win 8 comes out.

I never use hibernate in Win 7. I have turned it off.
For some reason this doesn't work the right way for me.

kiddingguy said,
I never use hibernate in Win 7. I have turned it off.

Same, I typically just use standby myself for an instant-on, although hybernate does work just fine on my rigs. But this looks interesting for when I do actually have to power down (like running on batteries during a power outage, etc) versus a cold start. Granted, 7 is ready to go pretty damn quick as it is on my rigs even from a cold start.

Jen Smith said,

Same, I typically just use standby myself for an instant-on, although hybernate does work just fine on my rigs. But this looks interesting for when I do actually have to power down (like running on batteries during a power outage, etc) versus a cold start. Granted, 7 is ready to go pretty damn quick as it is on my rigs even from a cold start.

I personally use the hybrid system. With a SSD it is still instantaneous and if I lose power the machine boots to the state I had it when I put it to sleep.

Jen Smith said,

Same, I typically just use standby myself for an instant-on, although hybernate does work just fine on my rigs. But this looks interesting for when I do actually have to power down (like running on batteries during a power outage, etc) versus a cold start. Granted, 7 is ready to go pretty damn quick as it is on my rigs even from a cold start.

I use standby as well.

Bogdan Calapod said,
So... Hybrid Boot -> Hibernate on steroids?

I think it's Shut Down + Hibernate, closes System files but caches user/application files on Hard Disk...it would be very fast on SSD...

Gaurav Agrawal said,

I think it's Shut Down + Hibernate, closes System files but caches user/application files on Hard Disk...it would be very fast on SSD...

Considering I have an SSD this is good news, cant wait for the beta to use Windows 8 as a fulL OS

Gaurav Agrawal said,

I think it's Shut Down + Hibernate, closes System files but caches user/application files on Hard Disk...it would be very fast on SSD...

Could be, but my guess is it will be a pre-login saved stated instead. If it is just logoff-hibernate, then any locks/etc would be retained for no reason.

For example if an errant driver has just eaten extra memory, if it is just logoff-hibernate, the errant driver state would be retained. However if it is a saved state of a clean boot before login, then any errors with drivers or other issues would not be present or fluctuate.

Isn't it the general consensus that having hibernation enabled on an SSD is a bad thing? Every time I hibernate or sleep with that enabled would write 4gb to my SSD! Wearing it much more quickly.

_DP said,
Isn't it the general consensus that having hibernation enabled on an SSD is a bad thing? Every time I hibernate or sleep with that enabled would write 4gb to my SSD! Wearing it much more quickly.

A few years ago..yes. Nowadays you can constantly write at full speed to an SSD and it would still need more or less 80 years to wear out

XerXis said,

A few years ago..yes. Nowadays you can constantly write at full speed to an SSD and it would still need more or less 80 years to wear out

Should I be safe with a OCZ Vertex 2e 60gb?

_DP said,
Isn't it the general consensus that having hibernation enabled on an SSD is a bad thing? Every time I hibernate or sleep with that enabled would write 4gb to my SSD! Wearing it much more quickly.

Well, in theory... However there are two aspects that have made this less of an issue.

SSD that are designed as hard drives have internal managers that write to different places so that even with limited writes, it would take years to hit the write stability limits, which is pretty close to the same time frame that traditional HD also start to fail.

Vista was designed with a new write technique for Flash and SSD devices, so that even heavy use would use different areas of the storage and also not overwrite information that is the same. (Some SDD/HD manufacturers used the Vista technologies in their SSD devices, or were inspired by the techniques Microsoft created for Vista as they were also trying to find ways around the limited writes and shorter lifespan.)

This is also how Vista and Windows7 can use Flash cards for ReadyBoost, which is a VERY active cache, without wearing out the cards, because without it, a normal Flash card could be worn out in a matter of weeks of use, and instead they should last many several years, even when used full time as a ReadyBoost cache.

The techniques that Microsoft developed in Vista were mainly designed for readyboost, with a bit of direct SSD support, as SSD drives were not commonly very large when Vista was being developed in 2004 and 2005. There were some SSD features added to Vista before release, but they were more 'functional' and didn't capitalize on the benefits of SSD or avoid the weaknesses.

Windows 7 extended the technology so that SSD drives as full time HDs are handled with several new tricks that directly work to get the most performance out of SSD by using different read and write methods to increase their speed/strengths and avoid their weaknesses compared to traditional HD technology.

One thing to notice is that Microsoft also uses the 'smart' write method on the XBox 360 in recent updates and WP7. This is how both devices can heavily use flash memory of the SD cards in the phones and internal and newly supported external flash memory on the XBox 360.

---

So in your example, the hibernate state being saved, is not an issue, and only the differences in the image are actually written to the SSD with existing bits that are the same left untouched. So in theory, frequent traditional hibernates, along with the new hybrid shutdowns should not decrease the life of the SSD.

(Also users moving to Win7 should be aware they can use things like hibernate and other features that are discouraged on other OSes when used with a dumb SSD.)

As a side note...
This specific issue has been the heart of why a lot of users get aggrivated with Android, since it doesn't use any smart techniques when writing to SD cards. So it doesn't give users the ability to use the SD cards that have a lot of space for a pagefile and RAM virtualization. So instead, when Android gets tight on RAM, it randomly starts terminating Apps running in the background, even if they are important applications that users depend on. For example if you have a 256mb Android phone and have Skype running, and open a browser, sometimes, Skype gets closed, shutting off your ability to receive calls or Skype communications.

It also can be a pain if you are trying to look up information in one App that uses a bunch of RAM and switch to the other App to use the information. Which sadly makes multi-tasking on Android sometimes pointless.

It is also a old concept that is new again, as running of out RAM is something users have not had to deal with for nearly 20 years in the computing world because of pagefiles and RAM virtualization to the larger storage media/HD.

This is why I cringe when I see people go on about the awesome multi-tasking in Android, when in practical terms you can't open Google Earth without Android closing nearly every process/App, and sometimes even turning off the ability to receive SMS on some phones.