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Turning Off Internal HDD's Win7

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a b G Storage
April 17, 2010 10:42:27 PM

Hi!
I was wondering is it possible to turn of an Internal Hard Disk Drive manually? I have a Back-up Hard Disk Drive that i only use every so often for back-ups. Without opening my case and disconnecting power, is it possible through Microsoft Windows 7 64-bit Home Premium to just turn it off and then when i need it, start it up? Its connected through SATA II 3GB/s. Its NOT my Operating System Drive. I know in power options you can set it to turn off after a certain amount of time, but i have 2 storage drives and want one to be always on, and the other to just sleep until i need it. If there are any settings in windows or any third party softwares that can do this then that would be great. Thank you

System Specifications:
-Intel Core i7 920 D0
-Asus P6T
-Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-Bit
-Corsair 850TX
-Intel X25-M 80GB-Primary/Boot/OS/App
-Samsung Spinpoint F3 500GB-Download/Storage/Data
-Western Digital Caviar Blue 500GB-Back-Up

Thank You for any help!
a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 4:06:11 AM

you can disable the sata port in the bios, or remove the drive letter in disk management

side note- having your backup drive plugged in leaves it vulnerable to power surges or hardware faults. It would be a shame if a surge took out your computer and backup at the same time.
a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 2:35:31 PM

So if i just go into bios and disable it from there, the drive will literally be turned off? If so, if i needed to turn it back on again in bios, how would i do that, would it automatically recognize it again or what?

Also, if i remove the drive letter in disk management, it will also literally turn the drive off...as in it won't even spin period?

Which way is better for this, the bios way or disk manangement way?

Thank You for the reply and help so far!

-BTW don't worry about my back-up management, i have it handled. None of my hard drive is vulnerable to power surges. For a surge to get to my hardware it would have to go through 2 breakers and a UPS, which also has a surge breaker and battery. Moreover my PSU also helps. And even if my drive does go bad, my important data that i care about is in like 5 different locations including an online back-up service. So i have it handled :) 
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a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 4:44:51 PM
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first off as long as it's plugged in, there is power going to it end of story. that said on to the rest of your questions

now if you disable the port in the bios it will never spin up or be recognized by any os or software, to re-enable it later just set the port to auto then reboot and it will take care of it's self

the disk management route is going to leave the drive enabled. it will spin up at post for bios to recognize it, then again at boot for win to recognize it. After that it will sit dormant unless you use some other software to access it

FYI
thinking your not vulnerable to surges is like thinking you safe in a car because your seat belt is on, it really doesn't matter when a rig or train flatten your car.
1. breakers - do absolutely nothing to prevent surges, their purpose it to prevent you from drawing to many amps over the wire, which could cause the wire to heat up, which could start a fire.
2. UPS with a surge protector - awesome investment the ups stabilizes the voltage, prevents brownouts from affecting the computer, and provides power in case of an outage; the surge protector protects from minor surges only. If you've never seen a tree struck by lightning an electrical arc jumps from the clouds 2-3 miles down and blows a 8ft diameter oak tree to pieces, that lil piece of plastic is not going to stop it.

3. PSU - sorry but that does not offer you any protection from a surge

4. offsite storage - the absolute best backup solution available though quite a PITA to update regularly
a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 5:45:43 PM

^Well thanks for the data back-up help, not really an expert there. But i do have an online service that does this, its called Mozy. Its pretty good :) 

-And thanks for the information, i'll do it through bios. I just want the drive to always be inside the comp and connected. I want to sit there untouched until i need it. It will be like a lamp...its still plugged in when its off.

Anyway thank's so much, i am going to go ahead and try this :) 
a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 6:10:50 PM

glad to help, I think I'll look into Mozy I need to setup an off site backup somewhere
a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 6:13:26 PM

Well I tried BIOS but no luck. I have an Asus P6T. I went into it look through all settings and couldn't find one to do this. Therefore i went to device manager, found my disk drive, right clicked and clicked Disable. The OS warned it will turn off all functions of it. Now nothing can see this drive, no software, nothing. I can only see it in device manager where i have the option to enable it.

Does this mean right now, its not spinning, and not doing anything? Not heating up? Not making noise?...etc...etc.If so then thats the perfect solution for me.
a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 7:18:07 PM

didn't think of that but it will work about the same as removing the drive letter

in your bios you would have to go to the specific port the widow will show the specs of the drive, the first or second value will be set to "auto" it can be changed to hdd, cd-rom, floppy, zip, disabled, manual,...
a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 7:22:55 PM

Well thanks for the help. Looks like it isn't on and not spinning up at all which is what i need. Problem solved. I can tell its not spinning because my other drives temps dropped by 3C since they are right on top of each other in the case.
a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 7:24:58 PM

awesome glad you worked it out
a b G Storage
April 18, 2010 7:26:10 PM

Best answer selected by blackhawk1928.
!