Power Throttling to Make a Comeback in Windows 10 “Redstone 3”

Posted on April 18, 2017 by Paul Thurrott in Windows 10 with 32 Comments

Power Throttling to Make a Comeback in Windows 10 "Redstone 3"

Microsoft revealed today that an erstwhile Windows 10 feature called Power Throttling is making a comeback. And it looks like this feature will finally ship in the “Redstone 3” release that is expected in the second half of 2017.

Note: Even I can’t look at the phrase “Power Throttling” and not see my own name. Weird, right?

“In this latest Insider Preview build (Build 16176), we leveraged modern silicon capabilities to run background work in a power-efficient manner, thereby enhancing battery life significantly while still giving users access to powerful multitasking capabilities of Windows,” Microsoft Director of Program Management Bill Karagounis explains. “With ‘Power Throttling’ enabled, when background work is running, Windows places the CPU in its most energy efficient operating modes – work gets done, but the minimal possible battery is spent on that work.”

So it’s like Game Mode. But in reverse.

According to Karagounis, Microsoft had experimented with adding Power Throttling to the Windows 10 Creators Update back in build 15002, which at the time was the biggest Windows 10 Insider Preview build yet. But I didn’t even mention this functionality in my own write-up for some reason, so I had to go back and look at Microsoft’s announcement to see what they had done. As it turns out, it was a limited experiment only.

“We are running experiments on a small set of Insider devices to evaluate an upcoming Windows 10 Creators Update feature which helps improve Windows battery life,” Microsoft’s Dona Sarkar wrote at the time. “Depending on the experiment configuration, you may see one or more applications reported as ‘throttled’ in the task manager. The experiment should have no noticeable impact on your user experience.” She noted that there would be more updates in February, but I think that was the end of it until now.

Old Power Throttling UI

New Power Throttling UI

According to Karagounis, those Power Throttling experiments resulted in about a 13 percent battery life improvement. And they’ve made improvements since then, so the real-world improvements could be even higher now. For now, Power Throttling is available only in PCs powered by Intel 6th-generation Core processors or newer. But Microsoft is looking at expanding support to other processors soon.

 

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Comments (37)

37 responses to “Power Throttling to Make a Comeback in Windows 10 “Redstone 3””

  1. Avatar

    Waethorn

    I see this as being a software helper to squeeze unnecessary tasks into a timeslice when the processor is already throttled up.


    So, paging for processes (?) :S

  2. Avatar

    dnation70

    AMD's not included...lol

  3. Avatar

    Ugur

    Not bad at all if done well.

    But please Paul, can you look into if MS intends to finally address file system operations with the next update?

    It's horrible how slow some file system operations are in Windows 10 on several of my machines (with fast hdds and fast ssds and usb3 sticks).

    Things like: -delete large folders (many gigs) with many (thousand) files in it: On my mac takes less than a minute, on my windows 10 comps with faster drives takes many minutes and with on top degrading massively in processing speed the longer it goes.

    Same for copy from one drive to another.


    And while at it also fix the things making me question the entire OS when still the case in 2017 like issues with long path names.


    It's nice and all that MS addresses many things each update but they don't have these very essential basics right yet is really agonizing (next to a massive workflow and efficiency downer).


    I wanted to copy a large project folder (several gigs, many thousand files) again toda and it was so slow again on my windows 10 main box that i googled half an hour for possible workarounds/fixes, of course none of them helped a lot, but it showed me that thousands of people have these issues with windows 10.


    Then, finally, after over 1.5 hours when the copy to external usb 3 drive was done from windows 10, i connected it to my mac and copied the project to there and the copy was done in less than two minutes.

    So,hm..


    I bitch and moan enough about macs recently, because i think they really made the hardware massively worse meanwhile (not gonna downgrade to the new ones from my macbook pro 2015, the last good macbook pro right now), but yeah, MS has to get these (very important) basics for file system operations as good as on mac.

    • Avatar

      ym73

      In reply to Ugur:

      I'm not expert, but my understanding is the the read speed is considerably faster on most USB drives than the write speed. When you were copying files from the computer to the USB, you were writing to the USB. When you were moving files from the USB to the Mac, you were reading from the USB and writing to the Mac. Try copying those exact same files from the Mac to the USB and see if it takes 2 minutes. I bet it will take the same 1.5 hours.

      • Avatar

        Ugur

        In reply to ym73: You are right in general regarding read vs write speed of course, but the speed (both read and write) is way slower than it should be on several of my windows 10 running machines.
        No matter if from/to fast usb3 stick or fast ssd.
        It was also way faster and way more consistently fast even for large folders/many files before i had windows 10 installed on these computers.
        And yes, both read and write is way faster and way more consistent on my 2015 macbook pro than on my windows 10 machines of which several have way faster ssds and some still reasonably fast hdds.

        Some of my drives are rated at very high throughput per second and in speed tests also achieve that but in windows 10 explorer file operations are only achieving a tenth of that and that at max, with it dropping way lower (even a 10th of that 10th) every few sec and more the longer the operation goes.

        I work on large project folders for unreal and unity projects which make up many gigs with many thousand files and this has become a major workflow hinderance.

        When one googles the topic it is obvious many thousand people have these issues on windows 10.

        It does not happen to everyone/all machine setups but obviously to a lot of people, so something has to be fixed there.

        And i saw many topics on this all the way back since windows 10 first release and still many up to this day.

        I heistantly updated to creator's update to see if that would fix anything regarding this problem, but sadly didn't at all.


    • Avatar

      glenn8878

      In reply to Ugur:

      I agree. Windows is slow doing basic file management operations. Copying files from one location to another is massively slow. Sometimes File Explorer locks up with my fast PC running i7-6700K. I give up. Just realize its the cost of running Windows.

    • Avatar

      warren

      In reply to Ugur:

      Long path/file names work in Windows 10. They fixed that last year. But in order to maintain backwards compatibility it's off by default for the time being. Take a second to look up how to turn that on, it isn't that hard if you really need it.



      • Avatar

        Ugur

        In reply to warren: Well, then please explain how to turn it on in a way that works properly in all scenarios. I googled all options i could find and applied them and it still only semi works and falls apart in many scenarios. Like for example it now accepts long path/file names in explorer while the stuff is in one folder but then for example still comes up with nonsense "too long path" moaning when i try to copy things from one drive to another (where i applied the same settings on both) or when i try to just delete a folder with things with long names in it.

        


  4. Avatar

    glenn8878

    My PC already feels throttled when locking up doing routine tasks. Please write efficient code.

    • Avatar

      warren

      In reply to glenn8878:

      Meanwhile my computer absolutely flies through whatever I throw at it.

      Gonna hazard a guess that you've got slow hardware.

      • Avatar

        glenn8878

        In reply to warren:

        So always the hardware's fault and never Windows? My PC is one year old running i7-6700K. I'm not running anything that would be considered difficult. Just doing routine Windows tasks like moving or opening files and applications. Odd to get "Not Responding" on enough occassions to make me question Windows. Oh yeah, Windows is perfect for you.

        • Avatar

          Rycott

          In reply to glenn8878:

          Sounds like either Windows is having issue and needs a reset or you have a hardware problem... possibly a faulty HDD.

          • Avatar

            glenn8878

            In reply to Rycott:

            In other words, it's Windows 50-50. Marvelous. Having issues like this with my 3 years old work computer too. Don't tell me. Probably Windows 50-50 or hardware. LOL!!!

            • Avatar

              Polycrastinator

              In reply to glenn8878:

              Well, without laying hands on things obviously it's hard to know what's going on. I can tell you my home and work desktops are still fast and responsive, and both systems are about 6 years old (Sandy Bridge, i7 and i5 respectively). So something's not right. If you're seeing the same symptoms on 2 different systems my guess would be if there's consistent software between the two of them, look at that.

            • Avatar

              Waethorn

              In reply to glenn8878:

              Well we've established the unifying issue here: the user.

            • Avatar

              TheOneX

              In reply to glenn8878:

              Glenn, when a computer is having "Not Responding" issues it is rarely actually a Windows issue. The issue is usually either a hardware problem, or installed software issue. If you are constantly having issues there are a few things you want to look into. You will want to check your processes to make sure a piece of software is not eating up all of your computer's resource, not leaving enough for your other programs to run properly. Another possibility is malware has found its way onto your computer. Finally running a check disk to make sure there isn't an issue with your hard drive. All three of these issues are far more likely to be the cause of your issues than Windows itself being the issue. If none of those are causing the problem, then you probably have a corrupted install of Windows, in which case doing a reset to Windows should solve the issue. If you do a reset, and you still have issues before installing any software, then I can say with almost 100% certainty you have a hard drive issue.

              • Avatar

                glenn8878

                In reply to TheOneX:

                Since I mentioned one was a work computer where I am specifically not allowed to install my own software, the common software is obviously Windows. There's no malware that I can detect since it is maintained by the company with a strong firewall. And I cannot do any reset of a work computer Windows 7 setup.


                As for my home computer, it is very new. Absolutely no reason to think it is obviously slow. Updated to latest Windows 10 with updated drivers.

  5. Avatar

    OhAlan

    Please let them call it "Thurrottling"

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