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Dec 26 2011

Why Won’t Windows Automatically Sleep?

Recently, I reinstalled Windows 7 from scratch after putting a brand new OCZ RevoDrive 3 X2 solid state drive in my desktop computer but since then my computer hasn’t been going to sleep automatically after its nightly backup. After a bit of research, I found that I needed to use the powercfg tool to see what was keeping the computer from going to sleep.

Specifically, you need to open an administrative command prompt and then type in the following command:

powercfg /requests

You should then end up with something looking like this:

Powercfg Command

Powercfg Command

As you can see, there is an entry under the System heading:

[DRIVER] \FileSystem\srvnet
An active remote client has recently sent requests to this machine.

You can even run a power efficiency diagnostics report by running the following command (after you close all of your files and applications):

powercfg -energy -output %USERPROFILE%\Desktop\Energy_Report.html

After sixty seconds, this will create a file called Energy_Report.html on your desktop which you can open and check the file for items that contains the phrase “The device or driver has made a request to prevent the system from automatically entering sleep.” You may also see a reference to \FileSystem\svnet towards the top of the report.

So how do you fix it?

There are a few things. The first thing you should try is updating the driver for your network card(s). The best place to check for these are the manufacturer website if you bought your computer pre-built or the manufacturer of your motherboard (if it’s a built in network card) or the manufacturer of your network card (if it’s a dedicated card).

The second thing to try is disabling media streaming. To get there you’ll need to browser to:

  • Control Panel,
  • Network and Internet,
  • Network and Sharing Center,
  • Change advanced sharing settings (on the left),
  • Scroll down to the “Media streaming” section and click on “Choose media streaming options…”,
  • Click the “Block All” button,
  • Reboot your computer.
Media Streaming Options

Media Streaming Options

By default, your computer will attempt to advertise its content to other computers on the local network through means such as HomeGroup and other content sharing functionality in Windows. If another computer on the network continually or periodically polls your computer for content the net effect can be that your computer will never go to sleep.

To undo this change, just browse back to the screen and click the button to turn it back on (there should only be one button in the window).

If that doesn’t work for you then you can initiate an override on the srvnet driver from an administrative command prompt:

powercfg -requestsoverride driver \filesystem\srvnet system

… or, if that doesn’t work then type:

powercfg /requestsoverride driver srvnet system

This setting will survive a reboot so you shouldn’t need to input it after each cycle but you’ll need to reboot to get it to take effect.

To undo this change from an administrative command prompt, just type in the following:

powercfg -requestsoverride driver \filesystem\srvnet

Hopefully, at least one of these options will help you get around your Windows Vista, Windows 7 (and perhaps also Windows 8) computer not wanting to go to sleep by itself.

3 comments

1 ping

  1. toolworker

    powercfg -requestsoverride driver \filesystem\srvnet system didn’t work for me (on Windows 7 Professional 64 SP1).

    But powercfg /requestsoverride driver srvnet system did (from this thread).

    1. Boyd Chan

      Thanks for the feedback – I’ll update the article later today 🙂

    2. Lucas

      Thank you so much, I tried everything and the only thing that worked is “powercfg /requestsoverride driver srvnet system” 🙂 The other command (that everyone seems to be proposing) did not work for me, but this one did.

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