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While the Sleep Mode on the Nintendo Switch is incredibly efficient when it comes to battery drain, there may be some occasions where you might want to completely power off your device - such as when you're taking a prolonged break from using the console or planning on removing your Micro SD card in order to export screens to your PC.

However, fully powering off the Switch isn't entirely obvious. Pressing the power button on the top of the unit simply sends it into Sleep Mode. Also, using Joy-Con or Pro Controllers will only allow you to enter Sleep Mode too. If your console is sleeping and you remove the Micro SD card, you run the risk of losing data or it becoming corrupted. The Switch itself gets into a proper huff whenever this happens and displays a stern warning before turning off entirely.

To avoid getting reprimanded by your games console for employing an incorrect power-down routine you need to follow these (not so obvious) steps:

  • Hold the power button located on the top of the Switch for around 5 seconds
  • Under sleep mode, you will see "Power Options"
  • Under Power Options, you can choose to restart or turn the power off

Once the systems off you can remove and pop your MicroSD card into an SD adapter (many of the 'Micro' cards come with one of these by default) and use a related port or USB dongle to hook into your computer. Pleasingly Nintendo hasn't applied any funky formatting, so you can simply go into your computer's file explorer, dig into folders to find the screen captures you want and take copies.

Please keep in mind that by restarting or powering off your Switch that you will lose any data stored in suspended software - so make sure you save your game and close the software down before totally powering off the console.