Wednesday, April 28, 2010

20 Ways To Increase Laptop’s Battery Life

20 Ways To Increase Laptop’s Battery Life

1. Ship shape with a defrag
Regular defragmentation helps to arrange data more efficiently thus making the hard drive work less to access the data. The quicker the moving hard drive works lesser is the load placed on the battery (buy battery for dell inspiron 1545, a1181). Thus, your batter can last longer. The effect is minimal, but this efficiency goes hand in glove with hard drive maintenance.

2. Kill the resource gobblers
End the background processes that are not vital. Monitor the resource usage through a ‘Ctrl-Alt-Del’ which brings up the Windows Task Manager (in Windows). If you’re not on the internet, it is safe to shut down the immediate non-essential programs running in the taskbar like the antivirus and the firewall. Weed out unnecessary programs running as start-ups by launching the System Configuration Utility from Run – Msconfig – Tab: Startup. Uncheck the programs which you don’t want to launch and reboot the computer once.

3. Pause the scheduled tasks
It may be a defrag or a virus scan, but make sure it is scheduled for a time when you are near a power outlet. If not then nix them for the moment.

4. Unplug external devices
USB devices are the biggest drainers of battery power. Unplug all external devices like an external mouse, PC cards, Wi-Fi, external speakers, Bluetooth and even an attached iPod.

5. Empty the CD/DVD Drives
Even if you don’t intend to use it, don’t leave any CD/DVDs as leftovers in the drives. A spinning drive sucks battery power like a sponge.

6. Go local
Desist using the DVD/external drives while running on batteries. Shift the content to the hard drive or run using (free) virtual drives like Pismo File Mount or even Microsoft’s Virtual CD ROM Control Panel.

7. Lower the lights
The LCD screen of a laptop is another huge power sink. Calibrate the brightness to the lowest level you can tolerate using the Function key toggles or using the Display Settings applet in the Control Panel.

8. Kill the sounds
Mute the speakers and try avoiding the use of multimedia software to maximize the battery life. Installed sound schemes also drain a battery (lithium 1501 battery, 1525 battery, 1526 dell battery) perceptibly.

9. Rid the screensaver
To maximize battery (laptop batteries, replacement laptop batteries) life by a little, switch off the screensaver.

10. Visit Power Options
Get familiar with power management through the ‘Power Options’ applet in the Control Panel. Both XP and Vista come with advanced power management features which shut off components like the monitor and/or the hard drive after specified intervals. This again depends on the chosen ‘Power Schemes’ (for XP) in the same applet. For instance in XP, ‘Max Battery’ under Power Schemes can be selected for maximum battery (apple a1175 batteries, apple a1189 batteries) optimization.

Similar settings can be found under ‘Mobile PC’ in the Control Panel of Vista.

11. Turn off the looks
Today’s OS’s like Windows Vista come with features like ‘Aero Glass’ which are resource guzzlers. One can turn it off and go for the ‘Classic’ appearance which consumes less power. In Vista, click on Desktop – Preferences – View Colour – Appearance – Classic Appearance and Windows Basic graphical interface. In XP it’s – Display Properties – Theme – Windows Classic.

Linux and even Macintosh are better optimized for longer battery (dell batteries, sony batteries, apple batteries) life.

12. Hibernate is better than Sleep
In the Stand By mode (or sleep mode), the computer turns of the hard drive and the display but memory remains active while the CPU slows down. This draws on the battery. In contrast, hibernation mode is better because the computer saves the current state and shuts itself down completely thus saving power.

13. Get the most…work on the least
Working on too many programs while on the battery is a sure fire power drainer. Keep use of graphic intensive applications to a minimum. Working on a spreadsheet consumes much less than playing your favourite game. To increase the life of the battery open just one or two programs concurrently.

14. Ram in more RAM
Adequate RAM reduces the load on Virtual memory which by default resides on the hard drive. Though every extra bit of RAM uses up more power, it increases overall savings by short cutting access to the power hungry hard drive.

15. Keep it clean
A laptop with blocked air vents will generate more heat thus reducing the life of the battery. Clean the air vents regularly to keep operating temperatures low. Allow for open space around the vents for air to circulate freely. Keep the area around the laptop clean to avoid entry of dust.

16. Temperature is a silent killer
Undue heat kills off a battery slowly but surely. Avoid leaving the laptop under direct sunlight or inside a closed car.

17. Avoid the memory effect
A problem more for the older Ni-MH batteries than for Li-Ion batteries on which most modern laptops run. Memory effect relates to the loss of battery charge when they are repeatedly recharged after being only partially discharged. It can be prevented by discharging the battery fully and then completely recharging it. Li-Ion batteries on the other hand have no problems with partial discharges and re-charges and complete discharge is never recommended for this type.

18. Update software and drivers
This sounds a bit incongruous but then newer drivers and software are often designed to be more efficient (and hopefully less resource hungry).

19. Use the right adapter
Ensure that the adapter you use to charge the laptop battery is an original one or one with the correct specifications. A mismatch in the wattage could cause an overload thus damaging the laptop and the battery.

20. Pack it up
If you don’t plan to use the laptop on batteries for quite some time, ensure that the charge is nearly 40 percent – remove the batteries and store it in a cool place.

A typical lithium ion laptop battery has an overall average life of 2-3 years. With some care and caution, its mortality can be delayed.

Informations from:

Apple MacBook Pro 15-inch Review
Installing MacBook Pro 15" Model A1150 Hard Drive Replacement
If I remove the battery & run from a power source will it lengthen battery life?

Apple MacBook Pro 15-inch Review

Like other systems we’ve tested with the Intel Core i7-620M processor, the MacBook Pro returned superb results, especially considering it was paired with 4GB of RAM. After installing Windows 7, we ran PCMark Vantage in Boot Camp, and saw a score of 6,699; that’s nearly double the mainstream average of 3,885, not to mention the previous 15-inch MacBook Pro’s score of 3,285 (which used a 2.66-GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor and 4GB of RAM). The HP Envy 15, which uses a 1.6-GHz Intel Core i7-720QM processor and 6GB of RAM, came in about 500 points lower, at 6,173. However, the Sony Vaio Z, which had a 2.4-GHz Core i5-520M processor, scored a much higher 9,936 (though that system had dual SSDs).

Compare PCMark Vantage results with similar laptops

Multitasking on this MacBook Pro (Buy cheap apple laptop battery pack ? Apple macbook pro 17-inch battery, macbook pro 15-inch battery, apple a1175 battery, apple a1189 battery, apple a1181 battery, apple a1185 battery) was a breeze; we had about a dozen windows open in Safari, including Google Docs and streaming music from Pandora, and were able to easily pan around lower Manhattan in Google Earth. 3D Buildings rendered in about 5 seconds, and flying around the city was smooth.

Booting into Mac OS X 10.6 took the 500GB hard drive a speedy 44 seconds, but loading Windows 7 was a somewhat slower 1 minute and 25 seconds. We saw the same difference when duplicating a 4.97GB folder of multimedia: in the Mac OS, it took 2:45 (30.8 MBps), whereas in Windows it took 4:20 (19.6 MBps). Still, there are some benefits to operating in Boot Camp; we transcoded a 114MB MPEG-4 to AVI using Oxelon Media Encoder in just 47 seconds, a new record.

Battery Life and Wireless
We never expect stellar apple laptop battery life out of 15-inch notebooks, yet that’s where the MacBook Pro really stands out. On our laptop Battery Test (continuous web surfing over Wi-Fi) the notebook lasted 7 hours and 54 minutes, more than double the category average (3:40), and akin to endurance you’d see on an ultraportable or thin-and-light. Even then, comparable notebooks were found wanting: The Sony Vaio Z lasted just 5:21 on stamina mode, and the ASUS U30Jc gave out after 7:07. While the older MacBook Pro managed 8:06, the endurance on the newer model is all the more impressive when you consider its increased power.

Informations from:

Installing MacBook Pro 15" Model A1150 Hard Drive Replacement
Laptop Battery Power Tips

Installing MacBook Pro 15" Model A1150 Hard Drive Replacement

Step 1 — Battery
Use your fingers to push both apple battery release tabs away from the battery, and lift the apple macbook pro 15" battery ( a1175 battery ) out of the computer.

Step 2 — Memory Door
Remove the three identical Phillips screws from the memory door.

Step 3
Lift the memory door up enough to get a grip on it, and slide it toward you, pulling it away from the casing.

Step 4 — Upper Case
Remove the two Phillips screws in the apple laptop battery compartment near the latch.

Step 5
Remove the following 6 screws:
Two 10 mm T6 Torx screws on either side of the RAM slot.
Four 14.5 mm Phillips screws along the hinge.

Step 6
Remove the four Phillips screws on the port side of the computer.

Step 7
Rotate the computer 90 degrees and remove the two Phillips screws from the rear of the computer.

Step 8
Rotate the computer 90 degrees again and remove the four Phillips screws from the side of the computer.

Step 9
Do not yank the upper case off quickly. The case is attached to the logic board via a ribbon cable.

Lift up at the rear of the case and work your fingers along the sides, freeing the case as you go. Once you have freed the sides, you may need to rock the case up and down to free the front of the upper case.

Step 10
Disconnect the trackpad and keyboard ribbon cable from the logic board, removing tape as necessary.

Remove the upper case.

Step 11 — Hard Drive
Disconnect the orange hard drive ribbon cable from the logic board.

Step 12
Use a spudger to carefully loosen the adhesive securing the sleep light and IR sensor connectors to the top of the hard drive.

Step 13
Remove the two silver Phillips screws securing the hard drive retaining bracket to the lower case.

Step 14
Slide the Bluetooth board out of its slot next to the hard drive. The Bluetooth board is still connected to the orange hard drive cable, so don't try to remove it entirely from the computer.

Step 15
Lift the hard drive up with one hand and use your other hand to remove the retaining bracket from the side of the hard drive.

Step 16
Disconnect the orange hard drive cable.

Step 17 — Hard Drive Replacement
Remove the two silver T6 Torx screws and black rubber bumpers from the right side of the hard drive.

You'll need to transfer these screws and bumpers to your new hard drive if you're changing drives.

Step 18
Remove the two black T6 Torx screws and black rubber bumpers from the left side of the hard drive.

You'll need to transfer these screws and bumpers to your new hard drive if you're changing drives.

If you are installing a new hard drive, we have an OS X install guide to get you up and running.

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