I started using a Mac few days ago (a MacBook Pro 13" with Mountain Lion). I'm wondering if there are power profiles that I can create and set like in Windows. Do they exist in the Mac world?

  • What sort of specific things do you want to implement from a windows power profile? I'm assuming you don't want to run Windows in BootCamp and use power profiles there and instead are looking to accomplish something specific in OS X.
    – bmike
    Sep 2, 2013 at 16:33

4 Answers 4


You might want to investigate the fine-grained control available to you in the Terminal command pmset. There is a host of features too numerous to mention in this simple posting.

  • Because I'm not a Windows user, I'm not sure of exactly which settings Daniel San is looking for. If Mr San is savvy, he will be able to find settings equivalent, or close enough, to match his requirements in the ample variety in pmset.
    – IconDaemon
    Sep 3, 2013 at 11:33
  • In combination with selfmade scripts, this can solve the problem. Thanks!
    – Daniel San
    Sep 3, 2013 at 20:08

Something very similar but with some additional options exist.

Open your System Preferences and find the Energy Saver.

Open it, and the you can not only set your power profiles but few more helpful settings.

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However this does not set the Mac operating performances, since those are managed more intelligently based on actual demand. Means the system will go in to lowest possible power consumption mode when ever possible. That is best shown in the New MacBook Air, with a battery life of >8 hours.

  • I should have mentioned that I alredy know this window from the preferences. But this is too basic. I wanted to set fine-grained configuration as pmset allows. It will be cool to have the pmset functionality presented as a GUI
    – Daniel San
    Sep 3, 2013 at 20:06
  • The answer can be only as good as the questions is!
    – Ruskes
    Sep 3, 2013 at 22:09

It's a great question, but because long-term OS X (macOS) users may not have experienced what Windows has to offer in this regard, I expect they are not sure what the OP is asking. Power Profiles allow for different power setting combination depending on the task. For example, when running a presentation a user might not what the screen saver to come on or the computer to go to sleep. Similarly, when encoding the user might not want the hard drives to power down. In Windows, seperate power profiles or themes can be set up for each of these occasions, allowing a range of power settings to be be controlled through making just one selection. So far I have seen nothing like this on the Mac (Mountain Lion to Sierra), so I am just starting my search to see if a third party utility exists. Failing that, there may be a way to set something similar up using the Automator.


macOS unfortunately does not allow for fine-grained control over the power consumption of the computer. Still, there are some tools that provide some of the configurability offered by Windows' power profiles:

  • caffeinate and KeepingYouAwake can prevent your Mac from sleeping.
  • Turbo Boost Switcher allows disabling Turbo Boost, limiting the clock frequency of the processor. This can limit power consumption (and fan noise) when a demanding application is being run (but will slow it down).
  • Volta allows for more fine-grained control over the power consumption of the processor. Your System Integrity Protection settings need to be adjusted, however.

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