I usually turn the laptop off when I have finished with it but of course then you have all the start up procedure to go through. What does the forum think of turning it off fully or just closing the lid and 'putting it to sleep' for a while.
It is normally plugged into the mains and used as a desktop replacement.
Have we got any thoughts one way or the other, and will I damage it at all by leaving it on.
Sleep keeps the computer alive using a small amount of power. everything you were working on in held in RAM
Hibernate saves the computer state to hard disc and then powers down the computer and you use no more power than you would if you Shut Down.
Vista (and, I suspect but don't know, Windows 7) has a hybrid Sleep/Hibernate option. This saves the computer's state to both RAM and hard disc. It keeps the computer in Sleep for a while (about 12 hours for mine) and then goes firmly into Hibernate.
If you want to minimise power use and have swift start up, use Hibernate. If you want to have a "fresh start" with Windows, use Shut Down.