Shutting Down Windows—and Your Computer
You’ve probably already noticed that Windows starts automatically every time you turn on your computer. Although you will see lines of text flashing onscreen during the initial startup, Windows loads automatically and goes on to display the Windows desktop.
When you want to turn off your computer, you do it through Windows. In fact, you don’t want to turn off your computer any other way—you always want to turn off things through the official Windows procedure.
To shut down Windows and turn off your PC, click the Start button and then select Shut Down. If you have a desktop PC, you’ll then want to manually turn off your monitor, printer, and other peripherals.
Putting Windows to Sleep
While you can totally power down your computer, you can also just put it to sleep, invoking Windows’ special Sleep mode. When you enter Sleep mode, Windows saves all your open documents, applications, and data to both your PC’s hard drive and memory; shuts down your PC’s hard drive and monitor; and then enters a special power-saving mode. It doesn’t turn off your computer—it simply puts it to sleep.
The advantage of using Sleep mode is that it makes it faster to turn your computer back on—or, more accurately, to wake it up. When you’ve put Windows in Sleep mode, pressing your computer’s On button powers up your equipment, wakes up Windows from Sleep mode, and quickly retrieves all open documents and applications from system memory. It’s a lot faster than rebooting from a power-off condition.
To invoke Sleep mode, click the Start button; then click the right-arrow button next to the Shut Down button and select Sleep from the pop-up menu.