Introduced as part of OS X Mavericks and continuing in OS X Yosemite is Safari Power Saver, one of a number of energy-saving features that Apple has added to OS X in recent years. As Apple describes the feature, Safari Power Saver “pauses” battery-draining content, such as Adobe Flash animations, on the webpages you visit, helping to preserve battery life and improve your Mac’s energy efficiency.
Apple claims that Safari Power Saver “recognizes the difference between what you came to see and the stuff you probably didn’t,” and tries to only pause content that’s on the periphery of the page: animated advertisements, videos unrelated to the page’s main article, those annoying flash games, and so on. In general, Safari Power Saver does a good job of distinguishing between a site’s main content and types of items listed above, but it also has a tendency to get in the way. Whether it’s an online status dashboard with multiple Flash-based widgets, updated game highlights on a sports website, or an advertisement that you may actually want to see, most OS X users have had to overrule Safari Power Saver at least once.
Safari Power Saver is enabled by default in OS X Mavericks and OS X Yosemite, and it’s generally a good idea to keep it enabled if you’re using a MacBook. But if you have a desktop, where energy savings of this minor degree aren’t particularly significant, or if you want your MacBook to display everything, here’s how to disable Safari Power Saver.
Disable Safari Power Saver Completely
Before we begin, note that, as its name implies, Safari Power Saver affects only Safari. Those using other browsers like Chrome, Firefox, or Opera don’t have anything to worry about here (although you’ll still be subject to Apple’s other OS X power saving features like App Nap). With that in mind, launch Safari and head to Safari > Preferences in the menu bar.
Click on the Advanced tab and find the box labeled Stop Plug-ins to save power. Uncheck this box to disable Safari Power Saver.
Disable Safari Power Saver Only for Certain Websites
The steps above disable Safari Power Saver completely. As an alternative, you can tell Safari to ignore the feature on specific websites. To do so, click the Details button under the checkbox and you’ll see a list of websites.
You can’t manually add a website here, but each time you override Safari Power Saver while browsing, that domain will appear in this list. You can however, manually cull this list by selecting each domain and clicking Remove (or clicking Remove All to delete all exceptions and start over).
Features like Safari Power Saver do help save energy, and are definitely worth considering when it comes to MacBooks. But those who want to exercise complete control over their Safari browsing experience, or those using an iMac, Mac mini, or Mac Pro, may want to try disabling it.
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