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Turning off a hard drive

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  • Hard Drives
  • Storage
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Last response: in Storage
January 11, 2010 10:21:32 AM

I just installed 2 hard drives not long ago for the first time. I'm using one as kind of an archive that I don't really access on a day to day basis. Is there a way to turn the drive off from the start of windows and it doesn't turn on until I access it?

More about : turning hard drive

a b G Storage
January 11, 2010 10:29:41 AM

Convert it to an external HDD. That is the only option. There is no option from BIOS or OS to do that!
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a c 415 G Storage
January 11, 2010 4:37:25 PM

The easiest way to handle this is to use a "green" drive - the firmware in these drives typically spin down the disk if it isn't accessed for a while.
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January 11, 2010 7:49:01 PM

You could also disable the drive in the BIOS, but you'd need to manually re-enable it in the BIOS again when you want to access it.
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January 12, 2010 10:11:23 AM

hell_storm2004 said:
Convert it to an external HDD. That is the only option. There is no option from BIOS or OS to do that!

If I do this am I still keeping it inside the case? And I'm guessing in order for it to stop spinning I need to "stop" it from the taskbar and would I have to restart my computer for it to come back on?
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a b G Storage
January 12, 2010 10:23:06 AM

^^That's what i said... make it into an external HDD. That way you dont have to keep it in your case! And it would only spin when you switch it on!
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a b G Storage
January 12, 2010 9:00:45 PM

friskydingo said:
I just installed 2 hard drives not long ago for the first time. I'm using one as kind of an archive that I don't really access on a day to day basis. Is there a way to turn the drive off from the start of windows and it doesn't turn on until I access it?

You can use a tool like Drive Power Manager to put the drive in standby.
Add this tool with the right command line arguments to Task Scheduler and you're set.
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a b G Storage
January 13, 2010 11:59:07 AM

An external case is more expensive, increases the cable mess and requires an extra power outlet so if you have room to put the internal drive inside the case then I don't see an advantage of using an external case.
Putting the drive in standby by using a software utility will give the same advantage as an external case without the disadvantages.
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a c 415 G Storage
January 13, 2010 12:59:43 PM

Cases... software... a "Green" drive is a lot simpler. It does exactly what the OP wants, automatically. No fuss, no muss...
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a b G Storage
January 13, 2010 2:38:18 PM

Maybe, but buying a new drive just to save a bit of power seems a bit (well a lot actually ;)  ) overkill.
And putting the drive in standby saves more power than slowing it down.
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a c 415 G Storage
January 13, 2010 5:22:29 PM

Yes, more expensive - although IMHO drives are pretty cheap these days and the OP could use the original drive in an external case for backup purposes. More backups are always good. ;) 

And Green drives, at least the WD Caviar Green that I use, don't just "slow down", they actually stop when left idle for a while. My 1TB Caviar Green drive uses just 0.4W of power in standby mode.

At any rate, if anyone else is looking at this thread for the purposes of making a buying decision, I'm convinced that a Green drive is definitely the way to go to fill this need.
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