What is Away Mode?

What exactly is Away Mode in Windows 8? I have looked all over the Internet found something but it didn't really exactly told me what it is. What does it do? I've read up a little bit about it, can I do tasks such as Share Media to media devices such as a PS3 or Xbox 360 in Away Mode? What can or can't I do in Away Mode? What differs from it from Hibernate and/or Sleep? Etc.

If you can give me any details and it's pretty extensive, please do! Thanks!


Away Mode does the following when invoked:

·    Shuts down the video signal at the port

·    Mutes all system audio

·    Blocks HID and PS/2 input devices (so your cat does not walk across the “delete” key and delete your library)

·    Puts the CPU into “adaptive” mode, which may save power depending on what’s running

·    Notifies kernel-mode and user-mode components of the transition (enables HW like video cards to clock-down or front-panel displays to change content, enables SW to do “smart” things like IM going to “away”)

·    Notifies the BIOS through an ACPI control method of the transition (enables the power LED to change from green to whatever, enables a different thermal profile to be put in place if the OEM decides)

·    Wakes back up when flash devices (USB FOB, flash card) are inserted

·    Wakes back up when an optical disc is inserted in the drive



The intention here is to provide a “user not present” state to the machine so you can walk away, know that your recording is going to happen (or not be interrupted) while not badgering the user with a screen, audio, etc. It is *not* intended to be a power management state. Today, this is the only way to ensure that your media center extender will always work w/o having to worry if your MCE host is turned on or not. Also is great in that the system does not have to wake from S3 to record – and become noisy in the process.


For assistance with issues related to Windows feel free to post on Microsoft Community Forums and we will be glad to help.


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Last updated July 30, 2020 Views 16,948 Applies to: