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Old 10-01-2009, 04:13 PM   #1
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Lightbulb Environmental impact: 24/7 power vs. extra wear and tear on box

I've read an old post on this forum about the endless debate already. I'm trying to avoid having people post anecdotal evidence about how long their uptime is, or how many years their box has lasted with multiple power cycles a day.

What I can't find is any data (peer-reviewed journals) about the actual cost of multiple power cycles every day. I'd like to be able to weigh the environmental impact of the power consumption for 24/7 use (my current mode) against the impact of having to replace drives and other components more often (and dispose of or recycle those components).

I welcome any salient posts that would direct me to any research on either of these costs. The power consumption data is easier to come by. I would value the wear and tear research more.

Old 10-01-2009, 04:43 PM   #2
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The power consumption may be more complicated than you think if you heat or cool your home. Each machine running also puts out some amount of heat. In summer, if you run air conditioning, that will increase your cooling costs of the home. In winter, it decreases your heating cost, but may increase your overall energy cost if the efficiency is worse.

Once I had an old server that I left running 24/7 in the apartment because it could heat the room better than the baseboard heater. Now that I'm in a well insulated house w/ a relatively efficient heat pump (at least above 20 degrees Fahrenheit), I'm not sure that would hold true -- but I do it anyway because it's the main shared file/print server.


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