This past Christmas I upgraded the wife's computer to the white MacBook from her horrible Dell. I've noticed recently that when she isn't on the computer, the screen saver doesn't come on and it doesn't go to sleep after the allotted time indicated in the System Preferences. She does have a lot of Apps open but I don't think that would affect it from going to the screen saver or going to sleep after a period of inactivity. Any suggestions on why it's doing this and what can be done to change it?
There are two places in system preferences that affect this, make sure you check them both. First, under energy saver and then under desktop and screensaver. Make that these are set to the times you want it to. It also depends on what apps she has open, some apps will keep the computer awake, one that are constantly updated through the internet I believe. When you choose "sleep" from the apple menu, does it sleep, also can you get the screen saver to work in system preferences.? Just to clarify, is this a Macbook or an iBook and what OS are you using?
i know if doesn't answer your question, but a good habit is to close the laptop when you're not using it. it will put it to sleep automatically and give you a measure of protection against accidental damage. one other tip is to select the option to require a password to wake the computer (system preferences > security then select general and check the box for 'require password' and choose 'immediately', or '5 seconds' if you want a chance to change your mind)... while you may not think it's necessary around the home, as soon as you leave the house with the laptop you have to consider it's contents vulnerable.
Hey thanks for all the tips. I discovered she had a file sharing program running that wasn't letting her computer go to sleep and I also zapped the PRAM as per instructions. The screen saver pops on now and it goes to sleep at the requested amount of time. Cheers!!