21 Jun

Free Software Saves Computer Energy – Eco Button Green Computer Energy Saver

Posted by Norman F

green eco-friendly notebook computer

Computers use a lot of power. We have covered how to save energy on computers in the past. Here are additional tips on saving energy.

Software Tools to save Power

Boray POWer helps saves energy by allowing you to slow down your computer’s processors during inactivity. Interesting spelling.

Verdiem has a new FREE home version of their Edison power management software for the PC available now.  It runs on Windows XP and Vista and helps you configure your computer to save energy. The Vista version should run under Windows 7. Use Edison to set up work time and non work time power profiles. Display money, energy and CO2 used.

AKS-Labs has Free WatchOverEnergy, an energy tracking and management software for Windows 9x, 2000, XP, NT. WatchOverEnergy program can activate stand-by mode for your monitor when you are not using the PC and when no important programs are running. Track energy saving in both watt-hours and dollars.

JSutils has energy saving utilities for Windows 2000, Windows XP/2003, Windows Vista and Windows 7. One program monitors the mouse, keyboard and CPU load and initiates computer shutdown if there has been no keyboard or mouse activity and the average CPU load has been below the threshold set for the specified time.

Granola Power Management Software

Granola for Windows and Linux is software that improves the energy efficiency of your PC or laptop. Server version is not free.

Sonar Power Manager puts your computer to sleep when ever you are away from it.

WinOFF is a utility program for Windows that allows you to schedule when your computer is shut down.

Eco Button Green Computer Energy Saver

Microsoft’s director of environmental sustainability has stated that “Probably 70 percent of business users leave PCs on at night for various reasons. That’s a lot of wasted energy”. Consumers need follow the same wasteful route.

I saw an interesting product at a computer store, the $30 Eco Button. Any time your computer is running and you are going to be away, you simply press the USB connected ecobutton™ and your computer is put into the most efficient energy saving mode available – they call this ‘ecomode’.

They claim it instantly sleeps and wakes computers. Eco Button also has software that displays how much energy you save. It will take a while to save the $30 it costs to buy it!

Here are some free tips for saving energy with your computer. Also consider installing a Digital Timer to control the smart power strip.

Greener Computer Printing

greenprint makes free computer software to eliminate unwanted pages saving paper, ink, money, and millions of trees. It works on Windows and Mac. The software analyzes each page and look for pages with nothing or wasted characters or just a little bit of print.

We all have power supplies littered with little power bricks.  These wall warts can constantly jack up your power bill, even when items are not in use, hence the term vampire power or phantom power use. Lawrence Berkley National Labs estimates that 10% of residential power use is wasted toward this as most homes have 40 products constantly drawing power.  Older power bricks are also not very efficient in converting AC power to DC power, causing waste. Save up to $125 a year by zapping hidden energy use.

We have covered power use by technology products in the past, including use of a Kill a watt to measure power consumption.   Yes, just unplugging them or turning off the power strip they are plugged into will work.

New devices now come with power saving power bricks that were required July 1, 2006 by the California’s California Energy Commission or CEC regulation, as well as the federal government’s Energy Independence and Security Act of July 1, 2008.

You should see an “Efficiency Level IV” tag on the brick that have very low “no load power consumption”.  You could even replace old power supplies with these newer ones.  They should draw a maximum of 0.75 watts when in No Load mode.  Energy Star 1.1 requires minimum power efficiency of 80%, while a future 2.0 version will up it to 87%.

California 2012 New Energy Efficiency Charger Rules

In January 2012, California regulators passed a more stringent rules to ensure power chargers are more efficient.  The motivating factor was the fact that 66% of power chargers use is wasted aka vampire power.  Many chargers already meet this new rules. It is expected that $300 million will be saved by using the new products. The new rules take effect on Feb. 1, 2013, for chargers used with consumer goods, such as phones and power tools. Jan. 1, 2014, for industrial chargers, such as forklifts. Jan. 1, 2017, for commercial equipment chargers, including walkie-talkies for emergency personnel and portable bar-code scanners.

Be sure to read: What makes a Green Computer or Electronics Product?

Track your Stolen Laptop with Prey

dell laptop, notebook, netbook, dell mini9

Losing a laptop or phone is terrible.  It interrupts your life and forces you to spend extra money to buy new electronics. Services for keeping track of laptops used to cost a ton of money every month. Track your Stolen Laptop with open source and free prey software.

It runs on Mac, Windows, and Linux and helps you track and find your laptop or smartphone if it ever gets stolen. Prey sends out timed reports with the general status of the computer, a list of running programs and active connections, fully-detailed network and Wifi information, a screenshot of the running desktop and — in case your laptop has an integrated webcam — a picture of the thief.

The thief needs to be able to boot your machine in order to load the software, so your best bet is to create a Guest account that has no password. Log into the Guest account and then install Prey.

Be sure to read our article What are Green Electronics – Green Computers.

Posted on June 21st, 2015
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One Response to “Free Software Saves Computer Energy – Eco Button Green Computer Energy Saver”

  1. Eco Button Green Computer Energy Saver | Easy Eco Blog Says:

    […] are some free tips for saving energy with your computer. […]

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