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ON or OFF?

Discussion in 'Tech Talk' started by Triggerbender, Apr 13, 2009.

  1. Triggerbender


    Mar 12, 2007
    This is something that that I have wondered about for a long time and have heard arguments both ways.

    So here it is.

    Is it better to shut down your home computer or just let it go into "sleep mode" when you are done using it for the day and why possibly?:dunno:

  2. Viper16


    Apr 2, 2007
    I have heard arguments both ways as well, and really do not know the true answer.

    I have done both to my computers throughout their lifetimes and have not had one single issue. I do however believe the "spike" or inrush of amperage when turning on the hardware does play a part in affecting the lifetime of the equipment. On the otherhand though, you will most likely never see the end of its lifetime due to the equipment being out of date and upgrading to newer equipment. I leave my equipment on and let them go into sleep mode, as long as the HD's are spinning, I think it will be fine.

  3. MavsX

    MavsX The Dude Abides

    Jan 19, 2009
    Arlington, VA
    neither. Leave them on. 24/7, forever. Restart them of course every now and then...but yeah..leave them on.

    do it.

    also, sleep mode sucks.

    just my professional opinion.
  4. CheesyD

    CheesyD Nyet to Marxism

    Oct 7, 2001
    Under God
    I leave mine on all the time. I've heard it's harder on the hard drive to start up over and over than it is to leave it spinning. Could go either way I guess.
  5. BigSexy


    Jan 26, 2009
    Fargo ND
    on all the time, reboot for kernel patches
  6. Heat is bad for a computer, putting it into sleep mode lets the computer shutdown and cool off:stooges:
  7. MavsX

    MavsX The Dude Abides

    Jan 19, 2009
    Arlington, VA
  8. Big Al 24

    Big Al 24

    Apr 23, 2008
    Heat is only bad for a computer if it's above the threshold designed by the chip maker for a prolonged period, or if it's because of dust bunnies insulating hot parts causing them to run hotter than necessary and restricting airflow. Heating and then cooling repeatedly is bad for most electronics. It's better to keep them hot or cool, but not both. I would keep it on rather than shutting down and restarting several times a day- but if you rarely use it then keeping it off shouldn't matter. The real goal with temp control in your computer is consistency. Intel C2D's have a thermal threshold which will shut the processor down at around 70+ degrees Celsius. My E6600's cores are currently at 43 and 41 degrees C and go up to around 50 when I'm benchmarking or gaming. Northbridges, GPU's, and other electronics have no problem with the heat, it's some of the support components on the PCB's that might take issue with it.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2009
  9. Blast

    Blast 'nuff said

    Aug 2, 2002
    NKY/Cincinnati area
    My computer has "System standby" and "Turn off all hard disks". When I'm done for the day I set system standby to activate in 2 minutes and turn off disks at 3 minutes. What exactly happens with either? Should I set both or do I only need one? I want the most complete rest period without turning off computer.
  10. RaiderRodney

    RaiderRodney Just Win Baby

    May 22, 2003
    North Carolina
    Same here...never really any problems either way. It truly is the classic "Ford vs Chevy" argument. The biggest thing that should pull you either way is how much juice it's gonna cost you monthly vs a hd does go out. Over the life of your may be cheaper to cut it off /shrug.

    The one thing that would sway me in the other direction is the state of sorry hd's these days. I was always a seagate fanboi because of the 5 yr warranty but these days they've went to 3 yrs as well so every company seems to be shipping lots of crap :(
  11. Y-NotG23


    Jan 8, 2009
    Woodstock, GA
    Turn them off.
    Other wise, this will happen!!

    Just yanking your chain.

    Pros to turning them off:

    • Less energy consumed.
    • Less heat generated.
    • Increased component life. All parts have an expected life. If they are running all the time, the end of life comes around quicker.

    • Parts (hard drives mostly) tend to fail upon start up
    • Some viruses are set to activate upon start up.
    • If you have several processes set to auto start, it can take some time to restart. If you are in a hurry, this can be a PITA.
  12. Big Al 24

    Big Al 24

    Apr 23, 2008
    The one in bold is the only one I disagree with. More heating up and cooling down cycles are what decrease component life. Chips are designed to run hot with adequate cooling. The expansion and contraction that occurs with heating and cooling puts stress on the chips and some say on solder joints and other components that are designed to run hot. People into high-end audio equipment typically leave some components on just for this reason. Who knows how much life you save by leaving it on, it may not be worth it. Another example of this is the Xbox 360 red ring of death. Many of the Xboxes (which run hot) that get turned off and on more frequently have had their chips pop out of the socket because of eco friendly lead-free solder. The expansion and contraction eventually cause some of the chips to lose contact with their sockets. People were even having mixed success wrapping a towel around their Xbox when it was on causing the chip to reconnect with it's socket, but I doubt it was a permanent solution.
  13. Linux3


    Dec 31, 2008
    I am a senior systems Admin, this is my life. Sad isn't it.
    Anyway, in the days of CRTs it was best to leave the monitor running as the inrush caused stress. With a LCD turn it off. Why waste power and fund the utility company.
    Back in the day hard drives had a nasty habit of developing 'sticksion'. That is if you turned the system off the oils in the drive bearings would seize. A thing of the past.
    A quality power supply should prevent in rush so turning off a system saves power and reduces, I forget the term but as a pc board ages heavy metals grow across the lams and short the board out.
    Turn it off!
  14. Y-NotG23


    Jan 8, 2009
    Woodstock, GA
    I'll respect your disagreement.

    The OP asked a good (and common) question.
    I've been doing hardware support since 86.
    The first PCs had a boatload of failures due to over heating.
    Motherboards would fry do to poor air circulation. More times than not, this was due to the user not making sure that the intake/exhaust areas remained clear of any obstructions (dust, curtains, etc...)

    One aspect that has yet to be mentioned is the quality of the parts.
    Mass produced or mickey mouse hardware is, in general, prone to all manners of failure.

    Disk drives have a MTBF (mean time before failure) rate that is based upon the drive spinning at full RPM.

    I'm do not want to jack the OP's thread nor do I want to start a pissing match over such a subject. So I'll leave it to the OP as to what he/she wants to do.

    Personally, I leave mine on 24x7.
    Desktops and laptops.
    The only time I shut them down is to clear out the bunnies that seem to collect (and add to the poor air circulation/over heating).
  15. MavsX

    MavsX The Dude Abides

    Jan 19, 2009
    Arlington, VA
    he's right
  16. Big Al 24

    Big Al 24

    Apr 23, 2008
    I wasn't starting a peeing match with ya, I just know there are two schools of thought on this subject (and possibly no "right" answer). Also remember, many people have "cold boot" issues with motherboards and components that have not been used for a while. I have a mild overclock going most of the time so I leave it on.
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2009
  17. Big Al 24

    Big Al 24

    Apr 23, 2008
    Be especially wary of the 1tb+ drives from any manufacturer. I think WD might be beating Seagate in that category on reliability. Lotsa peeps are having problems with the tb drives arriving DOA or failing after minimal use.
  18. Sgt. Schultz

    Sgt. Schultz Annoying Member

    Which is exactly why I'm watching this post from the sidelines. :supergrin:
  19. Y-NotG23


    Jan 8, 2009
    Woodstock, GA
    No prob.
    I never took it that way.
    I just wanted to make sure that the OP's question was addressed.

    And you are absolutely right.

    There are two schools of thought on the subject.

    Most users never take the time to look at the vents.
    And in turn, never see the collection of bunnies.
    In those cases, turn the sucker off when you're done.
    Fewer bunnies will collect and those that have will not fry the parts.

    I open mine up every spring. Blow'em out.

    I had one poor sap bring in his PC for repair.
    I opened it up and could not even see the motherboard for all the dust bunnies and the cooling fans were blocked and locked up. In his case, he left it on all the time and it did in deed over heat.
    Fried the power supply and motherboard in one fell swoop.
  20. JMag


    Feb 7, 2001
    USA:Love it or leave!
    Hibernation is generally a better bet than sleep, IMO...excepting speed of awakening.