I'm using a Macbook Pro late 2011, it has been upgraded with a SSD and 8GB RAM. I was curious as to whether putting my mac on hibernation would extend it's life or I should just shut it down every night like a regular person...

**Problem: **I have to use this for an another 4-5 years. **Usage: ** for like 3-4 days of a week, it runs for about 10hrs each day, it is mostly sitting idle.

I have a lot of stuff opened up and I use "Reopen windows when logging back". I just feel like the whole shutting down and booting back up puts excess stress on my CPU.

The CPU usages all the way to the top for like 5 secs on booting up. Would it be better for my CPU's life if I just used hibernation instead?

I could use this command I figure:

sudo pmset -a hibernatemode 25
  • Macs can be pretty robust - I have a desktop here that has never even slept since 2008 - it's on & awake 24/7/365, reboot for OS updates, that's about it. [That doesn't answer your question, of course, but as I've never hibernated a Mac ever, I have no comparison] – Tetsujin Jun 25 '17 at 17:47

From a hardware perspective there is no functional difference between a shutdown and a hibernate. Both modes completely power off the system, and no energy gets used in either state. As you noted, the only difference is the way the computer boots back up when you turn it on. However, the stresses that each mode places on the hardware at bootup is, for all practical purposes, exactly the same.

You're thinking of your CPU as though it were a car engine or a light bulb; where using it is akin to putting miles or time on it. Electronic components do not experience wear and tear this way. Using them does not "wear them out". A transistor bit can be flipped an infinite number of times without issue. The only reasons computer chips fail is because of physical damage (caused by overheating, overvolting, etc.) or extreme age (on the order of many decades).

The exception to this rule is your SSD. An SSD has a limited number of write cycles because the transistors must be deliberately overvolted to make the bits "stick" through a power loss (causing the physical damage I noted above). Again, however, the difference between a normal boot and resuming from hibernate is practically irrelevant.*

*Some would argue that saving the hibernation file causes large amounts of data to be written to the SSD, causing more wear. I would counter-argue that pagefile and log file commits during a normal boot make that argument a wash.


Interesting question. Computers have a measurement call MTBF or mean time between failure. The more parts something has, the shorter the period between failures. If the computer is off, then it cannot fail during that time. So you will extend the life of your computer by turning off the power when not in use. Hibernation is still on, and helps conserve battery power. Since your disk is not spinning media, shutting off power to it will extend its life. CPU failure will be due to overheating, so if the fan is not coming on when you boot, it is in no danger.


CPUs don't really get worn down much from heavy usage, they get worn down from heavy heat. As long as your laptop can properly ventilate itself, I wouldn't worry about high usage. The boot process isn't pure CPU anyway since a lot is being loaded off disk. CPUs are not typically one of the first things to go, but when they go, it's often because of excess heat.

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