Why do people care so much about boot time of an operating system?

This question can certainly be scientifically approached. Let's attempt to improve and reopen it...

  • 3
    I'd love to hear how you plan to "scientifically" solve the problem of "why do people care". People are illogical, and that is a scientific fact. May 7, 2012 at 3:20
  • @Breakthrough: That's why improving the question could make it scientific. May 7, 2012 at 11:58

1 Answer 1


Reads like it's asking for understanding personal habits of other people. A more sociological and psychological question about how the mind works and why some numbers make people drool over another.

  • What's the importance behind boot time metrics?
  • Why do we care how fast it kicks up?
  • Why do reviewers hark on about it?
  • Why do other people turn off their computers when I put mine to sleep or not at all?

Which leads to spitballing:

  • It's the first metric you experience on a new computer.
  • People or companies turn off their computers when they're not in use for long periods.
  • New users can understand this easily in demonstrations.
  • Once it was running clock speed, but now boot time is the latest thing for manufacturers to unzip and flop out to sit on the card table looking you back in the eye.

It's the same as asking why car reviews always emphasise the 0-100 acceleration when drivers rarely have legal opportunity to test this out, don't care for it, don't use it to such speeds and other matters of personal consultation.

So why do reviews now seem to be focussing on this aspect when they didn't before? What changed really in the user and corporate environment where people have always been hibernating, sleeping or shutting down to their own preferences or limitations? Why now do we care about how fast it boots up?

And now we're onto marketing.

  • Okay, I will try to see if I can improve it and ask again later. Just found it unfortunate that people rather decide to close it instead of improving it. Half of the Windows computers still shutdown is a measured fact, so I don't see what's not constructive about it at all. I agree though that the question might read that way... May 7, 2012 at 11:59
  • The question is about human behaviour and perception of numbers over the shutdown stats
    – random Mod
    May 7, 2012 at 13:09
  • By human behavior you are referring to the reviewers I suppose? Because dave's last paragraph mentions that that question is about the people and not about the reviewers, which makes the shutdown stats the main concern. In any case, I understand now why some of you have closed it... May 7, 2012 at 13:13
  • Reviewers yes and also why the recent shift toward boot times as a selling point when people were still either shutting down or sleeping years before. Macbook Air.
    – random Mod
    May 7, 2012 at 13:19
  • 2
    Ah, interpreted that way it's definitely subjective. One could say "because MS implemented clever tricks to cut it down a lot, which allows them to use booting time [which still matters for 50%] as a marketing point", but there's no longer anything scientific about that. Re-reading your answer totally makes sense now; I was just thinking from the users' approach where around 50% do shutdown and boot their computer. But that indeed does not explain the why about it, which appears to be a very long list of reasons... May 7, 2012 at 13:28

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