7 free applications to prevent your Mac from sleeping

When it comes to power management, the Mac far excels any of the PCs. I have my Mac configured such that it goes to sleep within 30 minutes of it being idle. unfortunately this tends to disrupt my downloads and also prevents me from remote logging in whenever I want to. I’ve been hunting for a good application that keeps my Mac from falling asleep.

Before you proceed with installing a new utility, keep in mind that preventing you Mac from sleeping has to be done with care, especially when the lid is closed. This can cause your Mac to overheat in the long run. Remember, your Mac needs regular rest just like you and me!



Caffeine is a tiny program that puts an icon in the right side of your menu bar. Click it to prevent your Mac from automatically going to sleep, dimming the screen or starting screen savers. Click it again to go back. Right-click (or ?-click) the icon to show the menu.

This is one of the most popular programs that I have found that does this job. While it is very easy to use, it is limited in features.



This small utility acts as a wrapper to the Insomnia kernel extension.  This is a lot more powerful than Caffeine. It gives you loads of options including turning off your display (my favourite feature) and setting it to prevent sleep on either battery or closing the lid. Needless to say, this is currently running on my Mac.



Jiggler is a little freeware app with one purpose: to keep your Mac awake. Jiggler just wiggles your mouse every once in a while, keeping your machine awake and happy. When you want to stay awake, run it. When you don’t want to, quit it. You can even run it while you’re working, because you can set it not to wiggle your mouse unless your computer has been sitting idle for a while.



NoSleep makes closing of your MacBook lid possible without going to a sleep mode. Now you shouldn’t have to plug your mouse and monitor to stay computer awake – just activate it by clicking a menu bar icon or check a tick in the System Preferences and continue downloading huge files and watching favorite movies over the network with lid closed.



Yet another application with the same name for the same purpose. NoSleep is an application that you use to prevent your Mac from going to sleep and for waking it at a specified time and then keeping it awake.

Don’t Sleep

Dont Sleep

Don’t Sleep blocks screen dimming, screen saver and sleep. Click on the icon in the menu bar to use. Right-click/?-click to instantly activate and deactivate. One really good feature is you can choose for how long to wait before the sleep mode kicks in.


pmset manages power management settings such as idle sleep timing, wake on administrative access, automatic restart on power loss, etc. This comes inbuilt within your Mac and you can activate it by opening a new Terminal window and running:

pmset noidle

To exit pmset, simply hit Control+C and your Mac will go to sleep as per your settings.

Are you already running any of these utilities on your Mac? If so, which is your favourite application?


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