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Remove hiberfil.sys File In Windows Vista and XP

Remove hiberfil.sys File In Windows Vista and XP

By disabling the hibernation feature in Windows Vista or XP, you can save precious room on your hard disk drive.

With the release of Windows Vista Service pack 1, many errors which led to an uproar of harsh reviews on the new OS have been fixed.

Although I get on well with Vista, most of my applications work fine, there are still several annoyances in how some of the settings differ from XP. One of these would be how to remove the hiberfil.sys file that is created by the hibernate function in Windows.

Remove hiberfil.sys file in Windows Vista and XP

When I first started using Vista I noticed that it would use up hard disk space seemingly randomly. Gigs would disappear and couldn’t pinpoint why. Then I noticed the hiberfil.sys file was taking up a lot of room on the C: drive and the cause finally became apparent.

The hiberfil.sys is a system file that is created when the computer hibernates. It serves as a reference point for the restoration of system and applications that were running at the time of hibernation. This file is responsible for saving the data in the open applications and allows your computer to quickly boot back up in the same state, with all your current data saved.

While this may be a useful function for some, disabling the hibernation function, and removing the hiberfil.sys file, you could save up to 2GB of room on your disk drive. It is also good practice to remove this file if you plan to defrag your hard disk drive, the hiberfil.sys is a system file that the Disk Defragmenter cannot defragment.

Remove hiberfil.sys File In Windows XP:

  • Access the ‘Control Panel’
  • Click ‘Performance and Maintenance’ > ‘Power Options’
  • Click on the ‘Hibernate’ tab
  • Uncheck the ‘Enable hibernation’ option

Disable Hibernation Windows XP

Now when you restart your machine, the hiberfil.sys will be gone.

Remove the hiberfil.sys File in Windows Vista:

You can use the command prompt:

  • Click ‘Start’ and then type ‘cmd’ in the Start Search box (do not press enter)
  • After a brief moment the ‘cmd.exe’ will be displayed in the search results
  • Right-click the ‘cmd.exe’ and click ‘Run As Administrator’
  • If you are prompted by the User Account Control for permission, click ‘Continue’
  • Remove hiberfil.sys file in Windows Vista and XP

  • At the command prompt type: ‘powercfg.exe -h off’
  • Then press ‘Enter’
  • Type ‘exit’
  • Then press ‘Enter’

If you are not comfortable using the command prompt, you can disable hibernation and hybrid sleep feature in Windows Vista is by using Disk Cleanup wizard tool.

To do this the hibernation file must be enabled to gain access the hybrid sleep and hibernation feature. Unless you have changed this setting, it should already be enabled by default.

  • Click ‘Start’ > ‘All Programs’ > ‘Accessories’ > ‘System Tools’ > ‘Disk Clean Up’
  • From the menu select ‘Chose which files to clean up’
  • Disk Cleanup Options Windows Vista

  • On ‘Drive Selection’ select the drive where your Vista OS is installed, most cases this is drive C:
  • Choose Which Files To Clean in Windows Vista

  • When the Disk Cleanup finishes scanning the system, a new window will open
  • Check the ‘Hibernation File Cleaner’ option (here you can check/uncheck several other files to clean or preserve)
  • Check the ‘Hibernation File Cleaner’ option

  • Click ‘Ok’

This will also remove the hiberfil.sys file from your drive.

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