Helping people with computers... one answer at a time.
Hibernate is a fast way to turn a computer on and off. On many computers, it works reliably.
I often turn my computer off and on daily. I use the hibernate function always. Is this in any way possible to harm it? I'm aware of the slight power use, but hibernate really speeds things up. I use Windows XP and run on Verizon DSL. I've never had any problems.
In this excerpt from Answercast #18, I talk about hibernate as a safe alternative to shutting off a computer and why I don't choose to use it.
And I wouldn't expect you to. Hibernate is totally safe when it works for you and clearly, it works reliably for you. If it's working faster for you than rebooting the machine, I really don't see a problem.
It's not something I would ever expect to damage your machine in any way.
Having said, that I do want to clarify one thing: "I'm aware of a slight power use."
No. Hibernate does not use any power. Hibernate literally turns your machine off completely.
That is in contrast to standby. Standby is the one that actually uses a little bit of power to keep RAM loaded. Hibernate writes all of your RAM to disk. Standby keeps all of the RAM in RAM by using a little bit of power to keep it in RAM.
If they work reliably for you, I really don't see an issue. I would encourage you to continue doing what you're doing.
Personally, I don't really like either. That's typically not so much because they are dangerous in any way. It's just that in my experience (on my computers), they have been unreliable to one degree or another. Either I can't reliably come back from hibernate or I can't reliable come back from standby.
So, I just trained myself to always turn the machine off completely anyway.
But if it's working and working reliably for you (and it sounds like it is),
keep on hibernating!
Next from Answercast 18 - Can I plug all my router plugs into a switch to get more speed?