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Thread: How to idle a rarely used HDD

  1. #1
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    Question How to idle a rarely used HDD

    On my desktop PC, beside the main HDD with the master-partition I also use a separate HDD which I actually access quite rarely, say once a week.

    So I want to know if there's any application utility out there which can let me stop the HDD when I don't need it running and restart it when I need it.
    I want to reduce both the overall power consumption and the wear of the disk.

    Thanks.

  2. #2
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    Some modern "Green" HDDs get powered down automatically when idle independent of the OS. In addition, OSes specify power-down options for HDDs. You may notice a brief delay (a couple of seconds) and spin-up noise when accessing a powered-down HDD. Keep in mind that constantly spinning down/up a hdd can actually have negative effects on its longevity as well, so use common sense.

    You can usually control when the hdds go into "sleep" mode from your OS power settings. Under Windows 7, from Control Panel > Control Panel\Hardware and Sound\Power Options\Edit Plan Settings > "Change advanced power settings" > "Hard Disk" ..

  3. #3
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    Thanks for the tips, of course the easiest way is by using the Power Options, but the problem is that some programs access the HDD at their own discretion (for example like Norton Antivirus for so called background scans) which I can't control...

  4. #4
    resident Humboldt's Avatar
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    I'd save the second hdd as a spare and get an external for your weekly use.

    It's worked well for me. If you need the space for backups just plug it in, otherwise it's not drawing power and isn't wearing itself down.

    Plus they're about as cheap as regular hdds now.

  5. #5
    Senior Member BMED's Avatar
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    NAS-RAID STORAGE DEVICE, turn it on when you need it!

  6. #6
    Administrator Philip's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ranger View Post
    Thanks for the tips, of course the easiest way is by using the Power Options, but the problem is that some programs access the HDD at their own discretion (for example like Norton Antivirus for so called background scans) which I can't control...
    Secondary drives are not used by Windows much (you can further control it by turning off search indexing, page file locations, turn down how much space the Recycle Bin uses).
    You should be able to controll when and what Norton AV scans.
    I have a couple of drives that I only use for storage, and they have to spin up every time when I try to access them after an idle period.

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