What does "Suspend session" @ "Energy Saving" mean?

In the “Energy Saving” settings, there is a checkbox for “Suspend session”. By unchecking this (it was on by default), I solved a problem where getting the monitor back from sleep mode (manually invoked by my script) didn’t work right. (Now it works.)

But what does “Suspend session” actually mean? KDE seems to use a peculiar vocabulary for some things, such as calling the “taskbar” “task manager”, or calling the Wayland and X11 versions/editions of Plasma “sessions”. Or maybe other parts of Linux call it that as well. Normally, I think of “session” as meaning “some amount of time doing a particular thing”.

Does “suspending” the “session” (of being logged in?) really equate to “make the monitor enter power-save mode”? Or is it more general/different? Would be nice to know what exactly I’ve disabled!

“Suspend session” is standard Linux vocabulary meaning basically power save mode, yes. This involves the monitor shutting down, but also the rest of the system; your computer will no longer do any work in the background while it’s suspended, which saves more power than just no longer lighting up the screen. What kind of power save mode exactly it enters depends on what you select in the dropdown below that checkbox, i.e. sleep, hibernate, etc.

1 Like

The relation between “suspend” and “session” here is basically that it means “interrupt doing a particular thing by powering down and then resume to doing things later”, to use your own words.


This is accurate. KDE doesn’t have a ‘taskbar’, but a panel that can contain many separate items that can be mixed, matched, moved around, added, or removed from it. Such as a task manager, system tray, clock, among many other things. Sure, it is a little different, but most desktop environments do call the “bar” at the top or bottom of the desktop a panel, not a taskbar.

This is also accurate. There is no separate “version” or “edition” of plasma for either of these. The difference is the display server used. The desktop can be run via X11 or Wayland.

Another thing to consider is using a consistent wording that is also easily translated to many different languages.

1 Like

In most places, we’ve replaced “suspend” with "sleep in user-facing text, so I see that the Energy Saving page is a bit behind the times. Its UI is quite dated and there’s currently an effort to re-do it, hopefully in time for Plasma 6.

1 Like

But how do you suggest renaming that particular occurrence of “suspend” in energy saving settings given that it’s a general setting where sleep is just one of the options?

Ah. I definitely don’t want my computer going to sleep or stop doing work just because I’m away for a few minutes and/or lock the screen, so I definitely should keep it unchecked indeed.

When you said before “manually invoked by my script” - do you mean that you have a script that disables the monitor, maybe by sending “DPMS off”?


sleep 4
xset dpms force off
i3lock -c 000000 --no-unlock-indicator -n
1 Like

Instead of doing that, you can set - in Energy Saving - “Screen Energy Saving” and set it to however long you want, instead of (or in addition to) “Suspend Session”.

1 Like

But is that triggerable by WinKey + L like my script? Because that’s the only way I use it. I don’t have a “timeout” (those stresss me out beyond words).

Then don’t use Energy Saving - that thing is all about the timeouts :person_shrugging: :sunglasses: .

You can instead just set a shortcut key to Turn Off Screen: Go to System Settings => Shortcuts => Power Management, click Turn Off Screen and set your shortcut.

1 Like

Or you can use the screen locking short (which is by default [META] (“win key”) + [L]) - it will lock the screen and then the screen locker will (eventually) turn off the screen.

Unfortunately, using shortcuts, you can’t do both - but you can write a script to invoke both those actions as DBUS commands, so you still get a script to do both, but instead of using two different command line commands, you can let Plasma manage this. I’m pretty sure it will be a better experience overall.


Sorry, you’ve lost me. I don’t get what you’re saying at all.

Never mind - you want to be able to press a shortcut and have both the screen turn off and the desktop locked, without waiting for a timeout - which is not a feature that Plasma has - and you found a setup that works for you :slightly_smiling_face::+1::+1:

If you want, I can show you how I would have written such a script, to use just internal Plasma features, without external utilities.