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Funk 49
Bronze

Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??

 If a PC is not going to be used for (8) hours or more, is it better (for parts/HDD longevity) to just leave it running or Shut if Off ??

 

 

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21 Replies
mfinnan101
Platinum

Re: Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??

If you're not using it, it's best to shut it off. It'll also lengthen the life of the components such as the hard drive. Generally hard drives fail due to wear and tear resulting in mechanical failure from constantly spinning at revolutions such as 7200rpm all the time.
Message Edited by mfinnan101 on 05-23-2008 10:02 AM

Desktop

Asus Rampage, Q9450 @ 3.2GHz, 4GB DDR2 800MHz (4-4-4-12), 8800GTS 512MB

X-Fi XtremeGamer, 4 1TB HDs, Triple Boot - Ubuntu (Hardy), XP Pro and Vista Ultimate 64bit

 

 

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Ringfinger
Silver

Re: Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??

I generally leave my PC running and reboot once a week to clear things out and release regain resources that may be hung up.  i am sure you will find more people that not that leave it running.  That way, your defrag, scans, etc can run in the middile of the night. 
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RobinBredin
Diamond

Re: Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??

If you are running Vista, you could put it in the sleep mode. 
      

If my answer Was helpful?  Please let me know by clicking on the 'Did this answer your question' and clicking on the Yes button.  Thanks.


 

 

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x_lab rat
Platinum

Re: Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??

Running constantly, a computer burns through about $10 of electricity a month.  Leaving it on gains nothing.  Dust builds up faster.  Windows needs to be shut down.  It's a very poor housekeeper, and over time it clutters itself up to where it won't run anymore.
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Alexandra_P
Diamond

Re: Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??

Another vote for turning it off.  The classic argument is that powering on is more stressful than keeping it running.  If you power cycle it every 5 minutes, well, yeah.  Every 12-24 hours - come on.

 

Here's a classic article on the subject from 1993 (!).  Even way back then hard drives were rated for about 20,000 power cycles and 25,000 hours of continuous operation - powering off every day was just fine.  Today hard drives are easily 2-3 times more reliable than that.

 

http://www.umich.edu/~archive/mac/misc/documentation/tooffornottooff.txt

 

Of course that's hard to believe when you're unlucky enough to have one die on you after 6 months.  I've been extremely lucky and had 2 PC's with drives that lasted 5 and 7 years with daily power-downs.

 


'Tis a poor carpenter that blames his tools.

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Ringfinger
Silver

Re: Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??

I set mine to power down hard drives after 1 hour.  So, no stress on the hard drives in my case.
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x_lab rat
Platinum

Re: Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??

Startup stresses are negligible. Power supplies do not 'lurch' on, they startup under a programmed ramp, the designers recognizing that at cold start, capacitors briefly appear to be a dead short. They turn off the same way. So it's not like slamming the doors on your car.

 

Certain old drives actually landed the heads on the disc surface at shutdown. They also were prone to bearing changes with temperature from long runtimes. Those two reliablility factors cancelled each other out. Starting/stopping it was bad, leaving it running was bad. Those issues have largely been overcome in recent designs.

 

When you hear/read about people having trouble turning their computer on after it's been off, that is a circumstance specific to that unit, and the root cause is the current generation of marginally-defective capacitors being used in all computers. When that starts happening, you might get another month's use out of it by leaving it on. But as the capacitors continue to deteriorate, the system will still fail outright.

 

Technically, this should not be happening.  Capacitors in computers are under much less stress than they are in say, a CRT television.  But vendors have cost-reduced the parts to the extent their reliability is heavily compromised. 

Message Edited by x_lab rat on 05-23-2008 02:41 PM
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drprinter
Copper

Re: Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??

I leave mine on 24/7.  When you turn a cold computer on there is a "electronic shock" to the system.

after a while this "shock" can blow a component on startup. if you leave it on then everything is at optimal

running temp.

 

just my opinion 

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mfinnan101
Platinum

Re: Is it better to Leave a PC Running OR Shut it Off ??


drprinter wrote:

I leave mine on 24/7.  When you turn a cold computer on there is a "electronic shock" to the system.

after a while this "shock" can blow a component on startup.


Not true any more. 

The only thing that would cause a "shock" as you put it on startup is if there is an electrical inductance present. The inductance that is on all integrated circuits inside your typical computer today is completely negligible and is of no concern whatsoever.

 

The only component that is susceptible to this would be the power supply, however in recent years the parasitic inductances and capcitances has be ironed out. So this shock is no longer present.

Desktop

Asus Rampage, Q9450 @ 3.2GHz, 4GB DDR2 800MHz (4-4-4-12), 8800GTS 512MB

X-Fi XtremeGamer, 4 1TB HDs, Triple Boot - Ubuntu (Hardy), XP Pro and Vista Ultimate 64bit

 

 

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