Power Management on Windows Vista
One of the main limitations of many portable devices, especially mobile PCs, is battery life. Although hardware manufacturers and Microsoft continually attempt to improve the effective life of mobile PCs, the application developer should take proactive steps to improve the power usage of their applications.
Your application should:
- Be aware whether the current power source is battery or AC power and use computer resources appropriately. For example, non-essential features – such as animations polling loops, and complex supplemental calculations – should be minimized when using the battery.
- Receive power state change notifications and act appropriately. For example, a low battery notification provides a good chance to save current work in case there is a subsequent catastrophic loss of power.
- Handle shutdown notifications gracefully by saving its current state and shutting down as quickly as possible. Windows Vista has greatly changed the shutdown experience for both programmers and users. More details are in Application Shutdown Changes in Windows Vista.
- Not use a device that has been powered down, unless necessary or until other activity has woken up the device for general use.
- Minimize the needs for reboots, which are a very time- and power-consuming operation. For this purpose, Windows Vista introduces Restart Manager technology.
For a detailed discussion of these topics, see Power and Device Awareness in the Mobile PC User Experience Guidelines for Developers.
Build date: 2/8/2011