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I've installed awesome as my windows manager. However, it doesn't seem to respect the power options from lightdm; if I'm at the login screen shutting the lid will trigger suspend.

Once I log into the awesome wm, however, this no longer happens.

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It no longer happens because power management is different between lightdm and the the session you log in to. Each session is expected to handle its own power management, for various reasons, and so you will need to run a power manager with your WM to get this feature to work as you wish.

A good power manager for the task would be xfce4-power-manager, which you can get in the repos. You can set it to suspend when the lid is closed. Then, just set it to start with your awesome-wm session and you'll be good to go.

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Use package pm-utils from the repos, then issue the command pm-suspend (as root) to suspend the laptop, more info on this link http://goo.gl/emZFUB

apt-get install pm-utils

Also, if your latop has a 'suspend' button or a combination of keys such as Fn+F3 to suspend /hibernate you can use them just make sure you have installed the packages acpi-support and acpi-support-base

apt-get install acpi-suport acpi-support-base

With this and some bits of configuration you can achieve to suspend the machine when the lid is closed (or using a button or combination of keys)

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