I have a Western Digital Black 1 TB (this one: http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...). Right now, I have Windows 8 on an SSD (Intel 330 180 GB) with my OS on it, and mainly use the WD HDD for storage. My question is, how does sleeping the HDD affect lifespan (if at all)? Does it make it longer, shorter? By default, Windows 8 seems to put it to sleep automatically after some number of minutes (not sure how long, maybe 10 minutes). Thank you very much.
I think the sleep feature in Windows has more to do with saving battery power on a laptop than it has to do with reducing wear-and-tear on the device.
My wife's laptop has been running 24/7 for the past four years on a/c power with no sleep or power-saving features enabled at all. It's still on it's original hard drive which last week tested as being completely healthy.
Compare that with my PC which I switch off every night and I've got through through two hard drives on it in 3 years.