It often happens with several mobile computer users that their devices run out of battery power during a class or a meeting. Battery power issues are things that always worry users. How much longer will the battery last, whether it will run out while waiting for an important email etc are questions we frequently consider or ask.

How to conserve battery power

There are a few strategies and tips for managing power more efficiently that are discussed below.

Optimize the power settings: You can choose a power plan that will extend the battery life of the PC. If you have a Windows 7 OS, you can click on the battery meter icon on the taskbar of the desktop. From the two options of ‘Balanced’ and ‘Power saver’, you can select ‘Power Saver’. Windows Vista, on the other hand, has three default power plans – ‘Balanced’, ‘Power saver’, and ‘High performance’. You can select either of them by clicking on the battery meter icon on the taskbar.

Make use of low-power states: There are different battery-saving states according to different versions of Windows, like the ‘Sleep’ or standby state, and the ‘Hibernation’ state. In a ‘Sleep’ state, the hard disk and display turns off and all the open programs are saved in RAM. So the work can be saved in standby mode and can be accessed later, because the information saved in RAM is cleared once the computer turns off. To put a computer in ‘sleep’ state, click on ‘start’ and then click on the arrow just next to the ‘Shut down’ tab; then click on ‘Sleep’. For getting it back up and running, press the power button on the computer. If you have a Windows Vista server, you can click the Power button after clicking on ‘start’. In a hibernation state, on the other hand, the open programs are saved to the hard disk and then the computer shuts down. When you switch it on again, the desktop is restored exactly as you left it. For putting the computer in this state, click on ‘start’ and select ‘Hibernate’ from the arrow next to the ‘Shut down’ button. In Windows Vista, click on ‘start’, click the arrow next to the lock button and select ‘Hibernate’.

Adjusting screen brightness: Dimming the screen or blanking it completely when it’s not in use is a good option for conserving battery. You can also reduce the amount of time the computer is idle for before the screen goes blank.

Turning off wireless: You can turn off the wireless connection if you are using the computer but are not connected to the Internet. Either you can remove the WiFi card or disconnect from your current network by accessing the Control Panel or the screen icon on the taskbar.

Other tips for conserving battery may include taking care of small things, like charging the battery as often as possible, avoiding watching a DVD or playing online games if you need to save battery, and adding memory (RAM) on the mobile PC.