Windows 8 Fast Startup and Hiberfil.sys

Does Windows 8 boot faster (real word on an SSD) with fast startup enabled or disabled?

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Jan 3, 2012
Many people who have SSD’s configure windows to reduce the size of or move the location of the pagefile and remove the hiberfil file by disabling hibernate. With systems that have large amounts of system memory this will restore a significant amount of storage space to your SSD (more so on a Win 7 machine). With Windows 8 MS has added another purpose to the hiberfil file storing the kernel and drivers to enable Fast Startup. The common practice of disabling hibernate to delete the hiberfil file will also disable fast startup. I think that there are benefits to not using fast statrup (fresh running drivers etc.). So on a system using an SSD and fast startup disabled how much longer will it take for the system to boot up? In reading some posts on other forums some people state that their system boots faster with it off some state that it is faster with it on. I haven’t tested the two to see if there is a difference between the two. But my gut tells me that on an SSD the difference is negligible and it is better to have it disabled any ways. Opinions?
Hibernation also wears out the SSD quicker.

Speed difference?
It depends on how you shut off your PC. On MY PC it's like this with a fast SSD for Windows:

OFF to ON: roughly 60 seconds (has slowed down with more programs over time)
HIBERNATED to ON: roughly 45 seconds
Hybrid SLEEP to ON: 5 seconds.

Hybrid Sleep is the most common use. The system state is COPIED to the main Windows drive and most (not all) of the power is shut off. It can then restore in a few seconds. This also contributes significantly to SSD wearing and uses up SSD space.

Hibernation and OFF are the slowest to start. The advantage to OFF though is that you can disable the Hibernation file. If you need the space or are really concerned with wear then you need to do this. Hibernation is mostly POINTLESS. Hybrid Sleep incorporates Hibernation but can start in a few seconds. If the POWER is interrupted, then the system starts from Hibernation state instead.

How am I set up?
Wear isn't a huge deal to me due to the rapid SSD price drop. I'll replace my main drive before it wears out.



Jan 3, 2012
Thanks for the information I also use hybrid sleep running windows 7, yep like 5 seconds if that. What I am really trying to figure out is how much of a difference if any there is on windows 8 between fast startup that uses the hiberfil.sys to store the kernel and drivers and doing a startup with the hiberfil.sys disabled. How much if any speed difference is there between the two?

I just told you.
If you disable Hibernation then you simply eliminate the option of "Hybrid Sleep" and Hibernation, thus leaving only a FULL OFF or SLEEP option.

If you use sleep it starts exactly as fast as Hybrid Sleep. The Hibernation file isn't used to startup from Hybrid Sleep; it's just there in case the power goes out turning off the PC. Without Hibernation your PC crashes if it is in Sleep mode.

How it works:
Hibernation-> RAM is copied to main Windows SSD/HDD (a restart copies it back)

SLEEP-> RAM still receives power but most of PC off (power loss crashes system)

Hybrid Sleep-> BOTH of the above (RAM still contains data thus quick to start; Hibernation file not used unless power outage then PC starts as if from Hibernation by copying from SSD/HDD back to your System RAM)

The speedup they show here is simply a slightly improved HIBERNATION mode. In fact, it's a bit deceiving in the gains because they're comparing a COLD BOOT to restoring by Hibernation. They aren't comparing for example, Windows 7 Hibernation to Windows 8 Hibernation on the same system.

Windows 8 has the feature ON by default. It will enable a faster HIBERNATION restart as well as shutting down into Hibernation or Hybrid Sleep faster.

The first part of this stage is the motherboard startup (POST) and that's always there when the system has been turned off. It generally takes 5 to 20 seconds. That's the motherboard testing itself (since SLEEP or HYBRID SLEEP is already on it won't do this when you do a warm start).

The best way to start your system is still Hybrid Sleep.


Jul 25, 2013
Hi Photonboy,

Any tips on how to free up harddisk space on SSD for windows 8?

Hiberfil and pagefile are taking up the biggest chunks on my precious SSD real estate.

Appreciate any tips to help free up some gigs.



You should be able to GOOGLE that info pretty easily:
1) Pagefile:
*skip down to the screenshots, then set the Max and Min values to be the SAME. I'd recommend 2048MB (2GB).

2) remove Hiberfile (so no Hibernation or Hybrid Sleep is available, only Standby or OFF).

*the vista/7 option should work. I highly recommend you check the FREE SPACE before you do this, reboot after and check again. You shoud have gained between 50% and 100% the size of your RAM (If Windows detects you don't use all of your System RAM, the DDR3, which the Hibefil is a COPY of, then it doesn't copy the unused space).



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