Shutdown options in Vista had recently some space in blogsphere because of Joel's post about Vista shutdown menu, and follow up made by Moishe Lettvin who worked on developing this piece. Continuing this thread we can get a view on how development of similar thing looked like for Mac OS X.
But this is not main topic of this post. Those posts brought to my attention Vista's power options which are much richer then in previous Windows versions (and at the end built-in support for GPO is available). Among many others I've spotted new option which is Hybrid sleep.
In simple word hybrid sleep is combination of power saving functions available in sleep and hibernate in one single options. When laptop (or desktop) is switched into sleep mode it consumes less energy, but all the time system is keeping its state in memory, so we can quickly get back to our previous work just by waking up our computer. With hibernation memory state is being written to disk and system is shut down. On resume, saved memory state is restored from disk and we are back at the same point where system was hibernated.
Hybrid sleep is doing both operations. When system is being switched into sleep mode and hybrid sleep is enabled memory state is being written to disk and also it remains in memory, and system is switched into power saving mode. So we can save power with sleep mode and quickly recover to work with weak-up call, and if our battery will get empty or power will fail we are safe as our memory state is saved on disk.
This option isn't enabled by default and power plan settings has to be altered to use it. This can be easily done in advanced power options (see screenshoot below).
If hybrid sleep is enabled every sleep command executed on system results in hybrid sleep. So simple. If You thing You may benefit from this option go and enable it.
At the end, if anyone who works with Active Directory missed it I recommend as a reading excellent post from Sander Berkouwer about power saving options available in Active Directory and Windows workstations environment.