Prevent Your Laptop from Sleeping in the Middle of a PowerPoint Presentation

Last Updated Aug 17, 2010 11:37 PM EDT

You know the drill: You're in a crowded conference room, projecting a PowerPoint presentation. Thanks to a few questions, you get bogged down on slide 5 a little longer than you intended. And eventually, the laptop decides to turn off the display or go to sleep, since it hasn't been touched in 10 minutes. Then you have to jiggle the mouse and wait for everything to power back up before you can continue.

It's not a catastrophe, of course, but it is annoying. And it's even possible that your laptop won't reconnect to the projector after waking back up, which can quickly become a serious problem. One solution is to change the sleep settings in Windows' Power Management Control Panel, but that's a pain as well. And you don't want your laptop to avoid sleeping all the time -- just when you're projecting. I've got just the thing.

Mouse Jiggler is a small, free utility that keeps your computer from going to sleep. In essence, it jiggles the mouse for you, preventing sleep from kicking in.

You can use Mouse Jiggler for any sort of activity when you want to watch the computer screen completely hands-off for long periods of time -- like when watching videos or reading -- but I've found it's ideal for preventing sleep while delivering presentations. There's even a Zen jiggle mode in which the mouse doesn't really move at all (but the PC thinks it does). Groovy. [via Download Squad]

Photo by Nina Matthews