Ah, spring is approaching. Thereby comes the responsibility of the beasts of the earth who cannot start their engines in cold weather to snap out of their hibernation and carry on with their jobs in the new year. And so must my laptop.
Hibernation is a wonderful technological feature that has been with us for nearly a decade. I quantify this timeline because it did not become a properly stable and useful feature until Windows XP and the hardware of that era. It is great to conserve energy by shutting down the entire machine, while maintain the state of the OS and its running programs. Even to me, it's almost black magic. I have used to on a daily basis, preferring it over the Sleep mode on Windows Vista. When I want it completely off, I want it completely off.
Since the Windows Vista that was upgraded over was defaulted to hibernation, it was no different for this Windows 7 beta. Only that, this morning, I witnessed the stubborness of some animals unwilling to break their winter sleep and grudgingly moved around half-awake in slow motion, not concerned with hunting to fill their empty stomachs. Today's Windows 7 took several seconds to over a minute in order for a program window to refresh its display contents, or just a pop-up context menu to appear. Even Task Manager could be observed frame by frame as it updates each text label element its UI presented.
I was late for work; I did not have time to spend four hours trying to slowly troubleshoot and see if I could isolate the cause and snap it awake right there; the trusty have-you-tried-rebooting technique is in order. This is Windows 7. This is the first time, and definitely not the last, I . And it takes half an hour to get to the shutdown splash screen with idle hard disk activity. I lost my patience and just shut down the machine cold.
Let me reiterate - Hibernation is wonderful. I love it. It is a truly complex operation of cooperation between software and hardware to carbon-freeze Han Solo for transportation to Jabba the Hutt's disco joint, without Han Solo even realising it until he asks, "what time is it?"
But we are still far from perfecting the technique.