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I'm considering my file server with a brand new 80G HD, will turning that PC off over night prolong the life of the hard drive? Manufacturer's (Samsung) warranty covers 3 yrs, but I'm hoping it remains relaiable for 5 or more yrs.
So should I turn off my file server every night or let it run for 5 yrs. straight?
Any advice from personal expirence or pointers to studies on the topic is greatly appreciated.
This is a classic issue over which heated arguments have been had since the dawn of the home PC. And nobody ever seems to be able to clear it up and decide what's best.
First off, it is said that a hard drive encounters much more wear during spinup and spindown than when it's rotating at its working speed. Most agree on this, but to decide whether or not it's better to shut it down (or use power management on the HD, which also stops the disks from spinning) you need to determine exactly how much more the device gets worn when getting shut down or started, compared to how much it is worn when just spinning along at its 7200 revolutions per minute (or whatever the rotational speed of your hard drive is). Here is where the real argument begins, because it's not easy, if even possible, to provide a measurement on how much it differs.
Me? The computers far away from my bed (the noise vs girlfriend factor, you know ) stay on all the time. If a disk breaks down, it breaks down. Replace it. In my experience, disks are more likely to suffer a complete crash when shutting down or starting than when just plodding along. But again, that's only my experience (I have only had three disk crashes at home so it doesn't even make a halfassed statistic ).
I leave mine on too (for the most part). My only concern is with the CPU fan. Its getting louder and I presume that it will fail soon. However, this machine is 5 years old and hasn't skipped a beat, so I shouldn't complain.
Every HD that I've seen fail has been at either bootup or shutdown. I just had one fail on a work machine 2 weeks ago, and it was during bootup.
Take it for what its worth and make your own decision.
Hehe, I use an Barton 2800+ w/ 1GB RAM as my main machine now so I know of what you speak. But don't throw away the old computer - get a new heatsink/fan and use it for experimenting....or as a web/mail/file/print server or whatever. I have a host of old computers that I have managed to get from friends and coworkers who wanted to ditch 'em that I fiddle about with when I get some free time over. But I guess it's the geek in me talking now.
Yeah, my whole house is full of old (still functional, you know..) PCs. I haven't convinced my family to make the switch to Linux yet, but they seem to be playing Frozen Bubble on my machine quite a bit lately, so maybe soon. I must admit that Frozen Bubble should be given much more credit than it gets. It's an excellent tool for recruiting new Linux people.