Only those who have used Windows 7 and earlier know the real pain of watching a computer taking minutes to boot-up. Not that PCs loaded with Windows 8 onwards these days don’t take some time to boot up, but you would have noticed that they do so quite fast compared to those running on older version of Windows. What’s the difference? Fast Startup!
As the name suggests, Fast Startup in itself is a feature that was meant to speed up computer boot introduced first in Windows 8, and later adopted for Windows 10 as well due to its success. The way it did so, was pretty simple: It never really turns off your Windows machine.
To avoid the tech-savvy technicalities let’s just say that due to this feature, the state of the PC is stored in a form of hibernation file, which makes it easier for PC to start from that very state since its already saved. This means that your PC is going to use a very tiny amount of power to keep the state saved. When you normally shut down your computer the state gets saved, and this is the reason why Restarting a computer using the proper Restart option from Windows seems to take way longer than just shutting down and booting up. This is because in restarting, the Windows Machine turns off completely, and since no state is saved, everything has to be loaded from scratch.
But then why may one want or need to turn this amazing feature off?
The feature in itself is quite useful, and personally, I don’t recommend turning it off unless you fall under the user category who might face some problems because of this feature – Believe me, the number of such users would be quite less. But then all that glitters is not gold, thus you might want to turn the feature off.
First of all, the hibernation file that is produced as a result would definitely take some space, so if you are already very low on space it might cause problems. Furthermore, if you want to use the “Wake-on-LAN” feature, then you need to know that you might face some time delay for the message to be sent across the internet network to wake up the PC.
Not only this, many updates and computer programs after installation, for instance, require a complete reboot. Thus, it can be arduous for some to manually reboot the PC by going further in the settings. By disabling the Fast Startup option, one can safely shut down Windows and turn on the PC again, and that would count as a reboot too.
Not only this, you might face some issues with Dual Boot Operating Systems. For instance, I have a Windows PC with Ubuntu installed as well. Whenever I boot into Ubuntu without properly restarting my PC from Windows, I can’t edit or copy anything to any other drive apart from Ubuntu’s own within Ubuntu. Thus, by disabling fast startup, even if I forgot to reboot properly, I wouldn’t face problems with Windows drives.
In addition to this, it has been reported that due to Fast Startup enabled, some users faced the problem of their keyboard’s power buttons not working. Not only this but for some users, their PC’s fan(s) never stopped spinning, even after shutting down, since Fast Startup essentially doesn’t really shut down your PC completely.
If you already have switched to an SSD drive, then your boot time would be up already, so you won’t even notice the lag in boot even if you turn the feature off.
How to turn off (and on, if need be) fast startup in Windows 10
It is quite easy, to be honest, to do so.
- First of all, you just need to open Control Panel. You can do so by typing Control Panel in the bottom left search bar and pressing
- Inside the Control Panel window, choose Power Options
- Select the option which says “Choose what the power buttons do”
- Now choose “Change settings that are currently unavailable”
- From there you can uncheck the “Turn on fast startup” to completely disable the fast boot option.
- Don’t forget to save your changes.
To turn the fast boot feature back on, just follow the above steps again and check the option to Turn on fast startup.
Note: Even if you had previously disabled Fast Startup, it might have got re-enabled itself after the last year’s Fall Creators Update as per a post by PC Master Race subreddit. Those that again disable the feature, might have to do the process again, as once again the April 2018 Windows Update has re-enabled the feature. It just takes a few seconds, so you should recheck your settings once again.