It looks like the days of having a quick snooze before your machine boots up in the morning could be over, with Microsoft promising a mere eight second boot up for their new Windows 8 operating system.
It’s still eight seconds away from the holy grail of ‘instant on’, of course, but it represents massive step forward for impatient users, especially those used to the coma-inducing start on times of older Windows machines.
The super fast start time has been achieved thanks to Microsoft’s engineers whizzing up a new hybrid hibernation/shut down option, which serves up far speedier boot-up at the expense of losing the ability of restoring any open programs on shut down.
Writing on the MSDN blog, Microsoft spod Steven Sinofsky got all techie on our asses:
Compared to a full hibernate, which includes a lot of memory pages in use by apps, session 0 hibernation data is much smaller, which takes substantially less time to write to disk.
If you’re not familiar with hibernation, we’re effectively saving the system state and memory contents to a file on disk (hiberfil.sys) and then reading that back in on resume and restoring contents back to memory.
Using this technique with boot gives us a significant advantage for boot times, since reading the hiberfile in and reinitializing drivers is much faster on most systems.
Read more technical delights here.