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Old 10-05-2009, 05:01 PM   #1
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Dis- and reenabling SATA drives on the fly

I'm building a new Linux (Debian) server which is going to function as, among other things, a file server. Since this server is on all the time, naturally I want power consumption to be low. My plan to achieve this is to run the server off a CF-card via an IDE converter, and having 3 SATA-drives purely for storage (in RAID 5). Since SATA is hotswappable, I want to cut power to the drives unless I'm using them. I have a few questions related to this:

1) Is there a utility which will let me power down the drives from the command line? (If not, my backup plan is to simply cut power via USB-circuitboard.)
2) Will this continual powering down and up of the drives cause issues I may not realize right now?

Many thanks in advance!
Old 10-05-2009, 05:38 PM   #2
Registered: Mar 2005
Location: North Carolina
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Hard drives are a lot more reliable when they are running constantly. I believe you can set spindown times on hard drives with 'hdparm -S'. I wouldn't do it though, it causes wear and tear on the drives and they will die quicker, I don't think the pennies you would save on your power bill would be worth it.


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