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Like Your Netbook’s Battery Life? Stick With Windows XP

According to some recent Laptop Magazine tests, some netbooks’ batteries aren’t running as long under Windows 7. Laptop Magazine’s editors ran testedthe Toshiba Mini NB205, ASUS Eee PC 1008A and HP Mini 311 with both XP and Windows 7. The result? The netbooks with Windows 7 ran for an average of 47 minutes less than their XP counterparts.

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The NB205 lost 33 minutes of battery life, which isn’t all that much since it still runs for almost nine hours under Windows 7. But the Mini 311 and 1008HA suffered big time under Windows 7.

Laptop Magazine’s battery test utilizes a script that simulates continuous web browsing.

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8 Comments

  1. Tim

    11/11/2009 at 7:35 pm

    Makes sense really. Windows 7, while presumably having a better power management system than XP, also has more features and is overall more demanding than XP.

    The question becomes what’s more valuable: 30min-1hour of battery life, or whatever features 7 might be granting you for productivity/security/whatever else.

    Reply

  2. GoodThings2Life

    11/11/2009 at 8:28 pm

    Sounds like someone can’t figure out how to take advantage of “Balanced” and/or “Power Saver” modes…

    Reply

  3. Ben

    11/11/2009 at 8:58 pm

    I could swear I saw some tests that showed just the opposite.

    Reply

  4. Xavier Lanier

    11/11/2009 at 9:05 pm

    @Ben – You’re right there have been tests that have shown the opposite. Laptop Mag pointed out that larger notebooks saw improved battery life under its tests.

    Reply

  5. Sumocat

    11/11/2009 at 9:19 pm

    Yes, on my Tablet PC, Windows 7 is running noticeably cooler than XP, which would boost battery life (though it’s so limited to begin with that the boost doesn’t amount to much).

    Reply

  6. K T Bradford

    11/12/2009 at 10:48 am

    @GoodThings2Life – Our battery test is meant to give readers a good idea of how long a notebook or netbook can last under normal circumstances. We set the screen brightness to 40% and allow the netbook to conitnuously surf the web until it dies. Certainly users can get more battery life if they tweak the settings, but if you’re looking to establish a baseline, all of the conditions need to be the same each time.

    This also goes for the tests JKOnTheRin and Liliputing did. Though the goal of that test is to hammer at the CPU until the battery gives out, it again is a baseline to see the minimum amount of time a given laptop will last. If you use the same test and the same parameters each time you can better measure the differences.

    Each time there was a loss in battery life, which seems significant to us.

    Reply

  7. tivoboy

    11/12/2009 at 10:54 am

    I’d really like to see someone post some real insight into WHY This happens? I can imagine there is just some system optimization that needs to take place, or is MSFT putting more emphasis on constantly monitoring things like networking, or background virus and spyware processes?

    Reply

  8. Dodot

    11/12/2009 at 11:24 pm

    My tablet lasts 4 hours on a six-cell battery when using Windows 7 – it used to last 3 hours and 15 minutes on the same battery when it had XP. Tablet ed running. But perhaps the difference in my case is that both Windows 7 and XP had Tablet PC services running continuously, whereas an installation of Windows XP on a netbook (XP Home ed?) likely does not have any Tablet PC-specific services. Perhaps if the Tablet PC services on a Windows 7 installation are disabled, the results would be more similar to my experience.

    Just a supposition.

    Reply

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