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Disk Wear from constant access


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11 replies to this topic

Poll: Disk Wear from constant access (4 member(s) have cast votes)

Will constant disk access break my hard drive?

  1. Yes, she's gonna blow (2 votes [50.00%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 50.00%

  2. No, you so crazy (2 votes [50.00%] - View)

    Percentage of vote: 50.00%

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#1 thrillhouse

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 07:41 PM

I just updated my computer with a lot of stuff from HP that I haven't been using since I did a clean install of 7 after formatting from xp.

The HP software came with drive encryption. I like the idea of my drive being encrypted but the disk access light is always on now. Sometimes it's flashing, sometimes it just stays lit, but it is never completely out now unless the comp is off.

My question is will this be detrimental to the health of my hard drive? I turn the computer off for a while at least once a day so I am hoping it will be fine but I am looking for any advice concerning longevity.

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#2 killerx525

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 08:00 PM

Have you tried a hard drive diagnostic?

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#3 MrBruce1959

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 08:03 PM

I voted yes she's gonna blow. :thumbup2:

My reason for voting yes is for the following reasons.

A disk type hard drive has mechanical features such as motors and read/write heads.

Motors do wear out and the heads which do not actually physically touch the disks, do make a crash landing to the disks on occasion.

Some hard drives spin all the time the computer is on, that is if you do not have power options set to put the hard drive to sleep after a certain amount of time.

Anything that is mechanical will wear out eventually, but the more the device is being used the sooner it will wear out.

Bruce.
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#4 thrillhouse

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 08:35 PM

thanks guys, I will use my bios drive diagnostic and see what it says. the light is finally out after my computer has been on and running for three and a half hours (just noticed it is staying off). I guess it was just when I first boot up.

When the drive is spinning for a while and I have no music laying I hear a squeak. Probably the bearing for the pallets.

Anyway, thanks for the advice, I have an extra drive or two on the ready and am all backed up so I am going to stay encrypted and dare it to crap out. Thanks so much! B)

#5 MrBruce1959

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 08:54 PM

Not a problem.

Sometimes windows indexing and system idle process can make the hard drive whirl for quite a while, I see that often on my computer if I walk away from it for a while.

But then again, I have my power saving options set to never put the computer to sleep, or the hard drives nor does the screen saver ever kick in.

But that is the way I prefer my system to be.

Does it cause un-needed wear on my hard drives? Sure it does, same as I often run SETI@HOME along with the benchmarks active.

Bruce.
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#6 thrillhouse

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 09:39 PM

I turned windows indexing off of most files and use google desktop, the computer has been faster doing this and I find what I am looking for.

Diagnostic check showed it was fine.

The drive just spins like crazy booting up and takes 10 minutes but after that it works great. The only reason I wanted to use the drive encryption was because you enter one password before the OS and no more passwords. There is a tpm chip on the motherboard that stores all the passwords for everything (windows login ,websites, programs, archives, ..) Once you put in the one password all the other password screens are bypassed. The wait time to boot up blows but it is a lot easier to compute without memorizing a million passwords. And you can lock it with a fingerprint reader.

On a semi related note, I have a wireless "broadband" connection as primary internet, and F@H always lost connection. I don't know if they are cutting me off because of slow speed or what but I couldn't get it to work when I tried years ago. I'll give it another shot, but if they use it to invent cyborgs I will be mad.

Edited by thrillhouse, 09 March 2011 - 09:41 PM.


#7 MrBruce1959

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 10:06 PM

The drive just spins like crazy booting up and takes 10 minutes but after that it works great.


I seriously hope you are exaggerating. :blink:
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#8 thrillhouse

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Posted 09 March 2011 - 10:13 PM

With the drive encryption stuff running, it is 8-10 minutes from when I press the power button to where my desktop is loaded and the spinning stops. The computer booted up fast before so I may take it off, but it is still fast once it's booted now and the password thing is convenient.

#9 Baltboy

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 12:34 PM

It really depends on the type of disk you are talking about. Average SATA disks will probably suffer the most. Enterprise rated SATA drives and SAS drives that are intended for RAID arrays are designed with heavy access in mind. The best way to judge is look at the MTBF ratings.
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#10 Allan

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Posted 10 March 2011 - 12:36 PM

Boot to safe mode. Does the disk keep spinning after safe mode loads?

#11 thrillhouse

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 11:26 AM

Thanks for the help guys, but I took the drive encryption off. It was just maddening waiting so long to boot up. Everything is running great now, thanks for taking a look.

#12 MrBruce1959

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Posted 11 March 2011 - 05:42 PM

Not a problem, that's what this web site is all about, people helping people.

I am glad to see things at your end are as they should be.

Happy computing!

Bruce.
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