4 Ways to Keep Your Mac From Falling Asleep
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keep mac from sleepingMost of the time, using the computer means staring at the computer screen, one hand clasped around the mouse, the other standing ready at your keyboard. However, a lot of us use our computer for more than just Internet browsing. We use it to convert video 2 Ways to Convert AVI & MKV Files to Add Videos to iTunes 2 Ways to Convert AVI & MKV Files to Add Videos to iTunes iTunes only supports MP4 and QuickTime format video files. We demonstrate how to use trusted free, open source, and cross-platform software to convert video files into formats recognized by iTunes. Read More , render images and compile code. Sometimes, we even use it to charge a cellphone.

At times like those mentioned above, you won’t necessarily be sitting behind your computer, eyes fixed on whatever relevant process indicator. More likely, you’ll get a warm beverage (like coffee), stretch your legs, and go to sleep.

It’s quite a source of frustration to then find out that your computer has fallen asleep mere moments after you stopped giving it your undivided attention. After several hours (or maybe an entire night), the process indicator shows a measly single digit – likely not what you imagined. For times like these – batch processing, big transfers and the charging of cellphones – you should be able to keep your Mac from sleeping.


If you’ve looked for these kind of utilities before, chances are you’ve laid eyes on Caffeine. It’s the most popular utility to keep your Mac from falling asleep. Usage is very simple. Installing Caffeine adds a small cup of coffee to your Mac OS X menu bar. From this menu, you can direct Caffeine to keep your computer from falling asleep indefinitely, or for a specified amount of time.

keep mac from sleeping

Caffeine has always been the most popular kid in class. Jackson reviewed the app Keep Your Mac Awake With A Dose Of Caffeine Keep Your Mac Awake With A Dose Of Caffeine Read More for MakeUseOf back in 2008. However, starting with Mac OS X 10.7 (Mountain Lion), and similarly with Mac OS X 10.8 (Lion), some users are having less success with the utility. Don’t worry, there are a lot of great alternatives.

Sleep No More

As an alternative to Caffeine, Sleep No More works essentially the same. It, too, adds an inconspicuous icon to the Mac OS X menu bar. Clicking it, you can specify how long you want the utility to postpone computer sleep, display sleep, or both.

keep mac from falling asleep

Sleep No More is singular in its functionality, only allowing you to postpone sleep for a given amount of time. This makes Sleep No More a breeze to use. It also doesn’t hurt that the application is beautifully designed.

Should I Sleep?

The two apps above work very similar to one another. Now for something completely different, Should I Sleep? attempts to automate the entire process using sensory input from your computer. Instead of specifying the amount of time you want to keep your computer from sleep, Should I Sleep? looks to see whether you’re still using your computer.

keep mac from falling asleep

Should I Sleep? is initially free to download, but requires small in-app purchases to activate the different sensors and detection features, like Face Detection, Camera Motion, Sound Activity, External Display, Download Monitor and Processor Usage. For just under $3, you can activate all the sensors in one go, and make sure your computer never skips out on you again.


If you want to keep your laptop awake to use it with your media center, or otherwise to use it with the lid closed, that’s exactly what NoSleep is here to do. Normally, your laptop goes into sleep as soon as you close its lid, unless it’s outputting to an external display and charging. NoSleep allows you to keep your computer awake, even after closing the lid!

keep mac from sleeping

This is ideal if you’re looking to use your laptop as a media server, broadcasting files to other computers. Are you worried about power consumption? I would too. Luckily, NoSleep lets you make the distinction between adapter sleep and battery sleep.

Why do you want to keep your Mac from sleeping? Let us know your reasons (and your preferred solution), in the comments section below the article!

Image credit: sdmania / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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  1. BW
    January 7, 2017 at 3:04 am

    The new phone absolutely has hurt my eyes. I started having vision problem after switching to the 6 Plus. Apple should be responsible and make this right.

  2. RustyPolo
    March 20, 2013 at 12:12 pm

    Caffaine is the best. i use that program to keep my mac awake

  3. Daizy
    February 8, 2013 at 3:59 am

    In my opinion, Mac users should change settings in the ‘Energy Saver’ control panel?
    Here, no need to run any other application. To the best utilization or resources, you need to set Mac sleep timing.

  4. Home page
    January 26, 2013 at 5:22 pm

    I am satisfied with your blog. Your post is dear. Thanks for sharing your precious comprehension with me.

  5. Harshit Jain
    January 21, 2013 at 1:50 pm

    Just joking- Save power, Shut it down. It will reduce pollution, then global warming and ultimately life on earth. The earth is in your own hands. Save it.:-)

  6. Achouak Ben
    January 21, 2013 at 9:45 am

    my brother has sleep no more and it looks to work fine

  7. Mr. Milk
    January 21, 2013 at 8:32 am

    I'm the developer of Should I Sleep and just want to clarify that Should I Sleep comes with Face Detection and Prevent by Time (exactly the same Caffeine and Sleep No More functions, also available for the menubar) for free.

    • Réy Aétar
      January 21, 2013 at 7:32 pm

      sir r there any windows version of this app?

      • Mr. Milk
        January 21, 2013 at 7:56 pm

        I'm sorry but we have only worked with Mac development environment so far. Maybe in the future we can analyze other OS versions.

  8. David Slipp
    January 21, 2013 at 1:11 am

    Is there some reason why we wouldn't just change the settings in the 'Energy Saver' control panel?

    I have my MacBook set to never sleep when on the power adapter but to sleep after 15 minutes on battery. When I have long running processes to complete, I just plug it in.

    • Mihovil Pletikos
      January 21, 2013 at 4:06 pm

      i was kind of shocked that there is even a need for utilities like that.... i never owned a mac, but kind of it looks to me that if os has that built in as an option, utilities are just a resource drainers.... and i bet that power options have also something like windows multiple power profiles, so you can change it as needed....

      • Naz Lazar
        January 22, 2013 at 4:14 am

        I'm a long time Mac owner and also am perplexed on why the settings in Energy Saver are not sufficient. I set all my Macs for the HD to never sleep, just the screens. It's not like the display sleeps if you're watching a movie, so I don't get it.