Duck's Tech Blog

MacBook Pro Retina Going to Sleep on Battery in Mavericks

by on Dec.30, 2013, under Home, How-To Guides, IT Issues

I recently got myself a MacBook Pro 15″ Retina and noticed that in Mavericks they have removed the option to have separate timers for display sleep and computer sleep.  You can turn off sleep mode  when you’re running on AC power, but not when you’re running on the battery.

The problem with this is that I want the display to turn off to save battery power, but I want all my background processes (eg. Adium/Colloquy) to continue running and for it to stay connected to wifi, but when the display goes blank, it goes straight to sleep and disconnects everything!

The fix for this is to manually set the options via pmset in the terminal. To do this, you’ll need to do the following:
1.    Open Terminal (it’s in the Utilities folder under Applications)
2.    Enter the command:  sudo pmset -b sleep 0
3.    Enter the command:  sudo pmset -b standby 0

You will need to enter your password after running these commands (if it asks for it).
For more information about what this command does, check here:

Hope this helps someone 🙂


7 Comments for this entry

  • Jaime D

    It helped me! Thank you!

  • hrochodyl

    Hi, your tip really helped me, but how can I undo these changes? I’ve just replaced 1 instead of 0 but it didn’t work. Thanks

  • duck

    It’s actually the value in minutes, with 0 to disable.

    So set it to something more like 20 minutes or so.

  • what

    Thanks for this tip. Was wondering though if this disables sleep and screen off completely for both on battery and power modes? So if I change these values the only way the laptop will sleep is if I close the lid or hit ‘sleep’ in the menu?

  • duck

    If you tell the screen to turn off through the system prefs, it will still go off. The machine just won’t go into the deeper sleep where the network turns off etc.

  • what

    Thanks. My only concern is that I still want my computer to go into a deep sleep (standby) while it’s sleeping for more than 3 hours, like it currently does.

    I just want it to not sleep when I turn my display off. So wouldn’t pmset -b sleep 0 be enough? What is the reason for the standby setting? I’m hesitant to change the settings until I fully understand them.

  • duck

    You can find out more about the settings by typing man pmset in the terminal. I’m on Yosemite now so I can’t check the settings for the older versions.

    Fun fact, this still works in Yosemite :3

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