1. doc109's Avatar
    Just got a Surface Pro and am generally loving it while still sorting out Windows 8. I'd like to know exactly how much screen-on time I am getting with a battery cycle. I have not had luck finding a Windows app to do this. If anyone can point me to an app that simply tells a user how much on-screen time is used during a battery cycle, it would be appreciated. I am also perfectly happy using a legacy Windows program to accomplish this task. Or maybe there is a command line I can run that would tell me what I want to know.

    Basically, I am hearing a lot about 4-5ish hour battery life and I would like to know exactly how much screen time I can milk out of the Surface Pro.

    Side note: I love how quickly the Surface Pro comes back on after waking from Hibernate - about 7 seconds. Makes it a lot easier to Hibernate rather than Sleep, which is much better for conserving battery.
    06-25-2013 05:34 PM
  2. stephen_az's Avatar
    Just got a Surface Pro and am generally loving it while still sorting out Windows 8. I'd like to know exactly how much screen-on time I am getting with a battery cycle. I have not had luck finding a Windows app to do this. If anyone can point me to an app that simply tells a user how much on-screen time is used during a battery cycle, it would be appreciated. I am also perfectly happy using a legacy Windows program to accomplish this task. Or maybe there is a command line I can run that would tell me what I want to know.

    Basically, I am hearing a lot about 4-5ish hour battery life and I would like to know exactly how much screen time I can milk out of the Surface Pro.

    Side note: I love how quickly the Surface Pro comes back on after waking from Hibernate - about 7 seconds. Makes it a lot easier to Hibernate rather than Sleep, which is much better for conserving battery.
    I doubt you will find such an app. Anything that is logging your usage will also then be draining the battery even faster, You can, however, get the essential information by typing powercfg -batteryreport at an elevated command prompt. That will generate an html file with current system log data. FWIW, in my experience, an aggressive power plan that toggles back the processor, dims the very bright screen, emphasis of hibernation over sleep, etc., gets me well over five hours, possibly much better but I have never bothered to test how far. I am light sensitive though so the max I ever the screen brightness is 30 percent. For my use, I also cut the max processor usage in half and the minimum to one percent while on battery since those are the occasions when I am not doing anything that should draw heavily on the CPU. In addition, I set the flash add on to not run by default. Instead, I only to allow it to run on select sites (this is not one of them).

    Personally, I think one major failing on Microsoft's part was to not load it with a genuinely aggressive default power plan that runs full power plugged in and significantly toggled back when on battery. Some battery life complaints come from people watching movies or surfing the web, neither of which require much of the processor at all but the out of box settings are closer to high performance than low battery use. That is not to say that is the case for all people, but the machine is set by default to use far more power than is needed for a good deal of typical on-battery activities.
    06-25-2013 07:14 PM
  3. doc109's Avatar
    Thanks for the detailed response. I agree that creating a custom power profile is a good way to go. I've cut to 60% max processor and always use hibernate rather than sleep. And I use a dim screen as well. I might try cutting max processor to 40% - seems like the internet tasks, movies, and Office tasks have had no problems so far so I may as well cut back the processor until I find the point where my work is noticeably impacted. Thanks for the top re: not having Flash run by default.
    06-25-2013 08:30 PM
LINK TO POST COPIED TO CLIPBOARD