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I use a very portable laptop with Ubuntu running. On that laptop, neither sleep nor hibernate works reliably (it works sometimes and it doesn't the other times).

I'm not asking how one can get them to work, but rather, how one can maximally power-save when he/she cannot sleep or hibernate the laptop but won't do anything with the machine during that time.

Please advice.

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marked as duplicate by Mitch, Eric Carvalho, Jorge Castro, Radu Rădeanu, Thomas Ward Jun 15 '13 at 4:43

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

You will get maximum battery life from the machine by ensuring that the CPU can stay in low power states for as long as possible.

The powertop utility (from the powertop package) is useful for diagnosing the causes of wake ups. It will also provide suggestions about configuration changes that can improve things.

You should run powertop using sudo in order to get the best use out of it, since it won't be able to monitor the system fully with regular user privileges.

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That's a useful tool. I already tried several 'suggestions' it gives and it already seems to have reduced the power consumption to some extent :) – Gödel Sep 4 '11 at 6:09

Allow me to answer my own question. But I wanted to share this link on "How to reduce power consumption". Anyone thinking of optimizing power consumption on a laptop should take a look as the page contains really nice set of PM tips. It is primarily written for thinkpad users but much of it still works on any laptop running Ubuntu.

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  • Turn off the display. There is usually a keyboard shortcut for this.
  • Lock the CPU to the lowest possible clock rate by using the powersave governor:

sudo apt-get install indicator-cpufreq

enter image description here

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