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Windows 7: Is leaving your computer on all the time (24/7) better for hard drive?

29 Dec 2012   #71

Win 7 Pro 64-bit 7601
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Goji73 View Post
Does power-cycling (persumably, turning a computer on and off) have any effect on a computer's motherboard? Does it wear it down? Or am I just repeating the same question in this thread already?
the answer is more or less the same. It will wear it down. Everything wears down with use, and even just time passing wears down things. Point is, as long as it is a quality motherboard, its supposed to endure the stress for decades. More often than not, even trashy mobos greatly outlast their service life and end up gathering dust in my shop's storage, even if still working perfectly.

Quote:
According to my source, he claims that it does but I thought I'd ask since I assume a dying hard drive and a computer's motherboard are separate issue.
Yes, your source is wrong. They are a completely different thing. HDD failure is relatively common (tech support point of view), mobo failure is very very rare and usually connected to failing PSU or thunderstorms or some external cause.

Quote:
This screen would appear right after the "ACER" logo disappeared, this happens whenever I would turn on my computer:
Clone that disk on a new one before it dies completely, trash the old one as it can die any moment.
Mobo is fine.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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29 Dec 2012   #72

Windows 7 64-bit, Windows 8.1 64-bit, OSX Maverick
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Goji73 View Post
Sorry to bump this thread but I thought I'd ask since it goes back to source of where this thread started... Does power-cycling (persumably, turning a computer on and off) have any effect on a computer's motherboard? Does it wear it down? Or am I just repeating the same question in this thread already?

According to my source, he claims that it does but I thought I'd ask since I assume a dying hard drive and a computer's motherboard are separate issue.
The motherboard has no moving parts, but the electronic components (chips) do generate heat. As long as the system has a resonable airflow, the components are designed to withstand temperature changes.

Most chips don't really heat up much and the ones that do, CPU, North Bridge, GPU, etc., they had been designed to withstand wide temperature ranges. For example, here are the temperature ranges for my system:

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The ambient temperature was around 20-22 degree Celsius. Note that the temperature for the internal hard drive is pretty close to the ambient temperature, while the external drive is running much warmer.

The CPU and the GPU on the other hand are 4-8 degree Celsius above ambient temperature, which isn't that bad. Playing some games and/or heavy use of the computer can easily push the temperature for the CPU and GPU to the 50's range, which is about 50% more than the idle temperatures.

If it's true that turning on/off the computer would damage the motherboard, using it beyond idling would downright destroy it in a very short timeframe. I for one who has some doubts that it's true...

You are correct that the HDD and motherboard is a separate issue. One the other hand, the power supply could cause damage to the HDD, even if there's no storm in your area...


My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Dec 2012   #73

 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Cr00zng View Post
You are correct that the HDD and motherboard is a separate issue. One the other hand, the power supply could cause damage to the HDD, even if there's no storm in your area...
Any properly designed power supply, even many years before the original IBM PC existed, could not damage hardware. Due to many functions that make damage virtually impossible.

Heat ICs to ambient temperatures above 100 degrees F (40 C) and not one IC is damaged. Many see the resulting crash. Then assume that is hardware damage. Heat only causes timing changes resulting in failed instruction processing. Cool the IC and nothing changes.

Intel processors have even operated in temperatures as high as 350 degrees F without hardware damage. Semiconductor damage meeans temperatures even higher.

How to find defective semiconductors? Operate the computer in a 100 degree F room. The timing changes causing crashes at 100 degrees F is how to identify and avert failures maybe a year later at 70 degrees F.

That is also how a defective drive might have been found before its warranty expired.

Another failure can be traceable to a defective power supply. Normal is for a defective supply to still boot and run a computer even for months. Heat and a multimeter can also identify that defect long before defective voltages eventually make a disk driver appear to be defective.

Determine what is and is not defective by executing a disk drive manufacturer's (provided for free) diagnostics. Especially informative when executed at higher ambient temperatures. And also at lower (ie 40 degree F) temperature. Temperature is a powerful tool to find defects. Unfortunately, many see the defect. Then blame temperature for what is really a marginal and slowly getting worse hardware.
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 Is leaving your computer on all the time (24/7) better for hard drive?




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