Is it risky to use hibernation in Ubuntu?

I’ve read that hibernation often causes trouble in Linux environments, e.g. system fails to wake-up or freezes and sometimes even refuses booting after reset. I really like the idea of hibernating the system into a zero-power state, especially for traveling. But I don’t wanna hurt my system’s stability. So I’m wondering, how is the situation nowadays? Is hibernation in Ubuntu reliable? I’ll also be using LUKS for full-disk-encryption if that changes the equation.

Asked By: programonkey


Try it (when you have all files saved).

The problem is that not all hardware is (fully) supported, or Ubuntu doesn’t know much about some devices (if it is save to switch them off). There are two main classes of problems: not all devices can be set to hibernation (e.g. often some external devices, and Ubuntu doesn’t know if it can switch them off), and not all devices can restore status from hibernation (or they will not start automatically).

So the best way it is to test it. So you will see if the hardware support it. And if some hardware is not 100% ok with it, you can search again in this site (and others), to find a work-around (e.g. putting modules on some black/white list, force to reload modules after hibernation, etc.).

It should be safe to test: since a lot of time we have standardized ACPI and other tools to control power, and the more standard components (protocol-wise) CPUs, motherboards and disks should be fully supported.

So test it, and if you are not full happy remember to do a full power-off and restart so to have hardware in a well defined state.

Answered By: Giacomo Catenazzi