How to Keep Windows 11 Awake with PowerToys

This post shows students and new users steps to keep Windows PC awake and stop it from going to sleep or turning off the display with Microsoft PowerToys utilities. PowerToys is a set of utilities from Microsoft for power users to tune and streamline their Windows experience.

There multiple settings one can configure using PowerToys. One of the many features in PowerToys utilities is the Awake feature. Awake is a utility tool for Windows designed to keep a computer awake for extended periods of time without having to mess with Windows sleep & power settings.

This feature should come in handy especially for folks who work in environments that control the power & sleep settings on individual laptops and desktop. Some companies will automatically turn on off the display after 5 minutes of inactivity. This can be very brutal, especially when you have to always re-type your password.

With Microsoft Awake PowerToys tool, you can keep your computer awake indefinitely or for a specific period of time.

To get install PowerToys utilities in Windows 11, follow the steps below:

How to stop Windows from turning screen or display off

When you work in environments where your computer screen goes black after certain periods of inactivity, you can use Microsoft PowerToys tools to stop it from happening.

To do that, go to the link below and download PowerToys.

Releases · microsoft/PowerToys · GitHub

On the screen, click on PowerToysSetup-0.43.0-x64.exe

Future versions should have different version number in the image below.

windows 11 powertoys download

Once the file is downloaded, go to the Downloads folder and double-click the file and begin the installation.

Click Next to begin the setup wizard.

windows 11 powertoys install

On the next screen, select the option to Automatically start PowerToys (Preview) at logon.

windows 11 powertoys auto start checked

At the end, click Install to install PowerToys tools in Windows 11.

windows 11 install powertoys

After installing the app, close out the PowerToys Welcome screen at first launch. Then go to the Start menu and search for “PowerToys” as highlighted below.

Then right-click the app icon and select Run as administrator.

windows 11 powertoys open as admin

On the General tab, click the Restart as administrator button as highlighted below.

windows 11 run as administrator

When the app re-opens, toggle the button to On to Always run as administrator. Also turn on Run as startup and Download update automatically as highlighted in the image below.

windows 11 powertoys general settings page

Next, click on the Awake tab on the left menu, then toggle the button to enable. Check the box to Keep screen on, then change the mode.

The following Awake states can be selected:

  • Off (Passive) – The computer awakeness state is unaffected. The application is waiting for user input.
  • Keep awake indefinitely – The computer stays awake indefinitely, until the user explicitly puts the machine to sleep or exits/disables the application.
  • Keep awake temporarily – Keep machine awake for a pre-defined limited time. Once the time elapses, computer resumes its previous awakeness state.
windows 11 awake settings indefinately

You can also choose to keep the PC awake temporarily, then specific for how long.

windows 11 awake settings temporarily 1

Exit and restart your computer.

How to use Awake from the Taskbar

Once Awake is configured, you can quickly change its settings from the Taskbar. The Awake icon (teacup symbol) will appear as a hidden icon in the taskbar.

windows 11 powertoys taskbar teacup

Click show icons up arrow, then right-click on Awake teacup icon and select the mode you want the computer to stay awake or turn off to use the default power & sleep settings on the PC.

windows 11 awake change mode

That should do it!


This post showed you how to use Microsoft PowerToys Awake feature to keep your computer from going to sleep or turning off the screen.

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