Jump to content


 


Register a free account to unlock additional features at BleepingComputer.com
Welcome to BleepingComputer, a free community where people like yourself come together to discuss and learn how to use their computers. Using the site is easy and fun. As a guest, you can browse and view the various discussions in the forums, but can not create a new topic or reply to an existing one unless you are logged in. Other benefits of registering an account are subscribing to topics and forums, creating a blog, and having no ads shown anywhere on the site.


Click here to Register a free account now! or read our Welcome Guide to learn how to use this site.

Photo

Switch off external 2,5'' hard disk with software?


  • Please log in to reply
25 replies to this topic

#1 Dirkk

Dirkk

  • Members
  • 274 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:12:45 AM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 05:44 AM

I am considering to use an external 2,5'' USB hard disk to store my movies on. I would need the drive about 3 to 5 hours a day running. I do not want to let the drive being connected / running all the time (to take care of it), but only when I watch a movie or so. Is there a convenient way (may be software) to switch off the USB connection, the port or the hard disk (like you could do with a switch on an external 3,5 hard drive case) without each time having to plug off the plug?


Edited by hamluis, 13 March 2014 - 07:05 PM.
Moved from Win 7 to External Hardware - Hamluis.

Windows 10 Home, 64bit


BC AdBot (Login to Remove)

 


#2 Ant.Man

Ant.Man

  • Members
  • 129 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Just left of DC
  • Local time:11:45 PM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 05:57 AM

Assumption:

The drive does not a power switch.

 

The hard drive has two parts that are powered.  The motor and the PCB.  The motor will power down through firmware/software.  The PCB will not.

 

For more detail, please provide make and model for all hardware involved.


This is not my signature.


#3 Dirkk

Dirkk
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 274 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:12:45 AM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 06:18 AM

Thanky you Ant.Man.

 

Yes, no switch.

 

Sorry, do not know, what PCB means.

 

I am looking for a way to use a drive like that, I have to buy it first (so I do not know any details, sorry). I am considering to buy a 2,5'' or 3,5'' hard disk for this purpose. If you could switch off a 2,5 HD, I may be would prefare it.

 

Thanks again.


Windows 10 Home, 64bit


#4 Ant.Man

Ant.Man

  • Members
  • 129 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Just left of DC
  • Local time:11:45 PM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 06:28 AM

drive-firmware.jpg

 

PCB = the green part, printed circuit board

 

http://www.amazon.com/MiniPro-eSATA-6Gbps-External-Enclosure/dp/B003XEZ33Y


This is not my signature.


#5 Dirkk

Dirkk
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 274 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:12:45 AM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 06:38 AM

Ah OK, I understand (I have any idea of hard disks), many thanks for the screenshot.

 

The motor will power down through firmware/software.  The PCB will not.

 

Or, may be that would be enough to safe power and to spare the hard drive. So when the motor automatically would be switched off, when the drive is not needed the drive would not be loaded anymore.

 

Yes, a good idea, an enclosure with switch, thanks.


Windows 10 Home, 64bit


#6 Ant.Man

Ant.Man

  • Members
  • 129 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Just left of DC
  • Local time:11:45 PM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 06:54 AM

A drive can 'spin down' or 'rest' (save power/stress) and still be available to the OS.

 

This describes PCB = on, disk = off.

 

Drive spins down.  Saves power.  You need a file.  Windows 'wakes up' the drive (spins up).

 

USB powered external drives are subject to problems related to amperage available to power the disk motor. 

 

Note the insightful user review from Amazon:

 

I chose this drive over other 2.5" portable Hard Drives because it can be powered by an external 2.0A power supply. When reading all the negative reviews of other drives, most of the low ratings can be traced to insufficient power coming from the computer USB ports. I surmise that many of the reviewers do not recognize this, and blame the drive (with just cause). A typical 2.5" HD requires 850ma to start up, and USB ports are current limited to 500ma. Notice that the drives that have a Y cable (to provide 1.0A to the drive) have the fewest negative ratings and the ones that don't (like Seagate) have the most. The particular drive in this unit is a Toshiba MK1059GSM, which, according to Toshiba requires 900ma to start, and 440ma to run. (Higher than typical)

This is not my signature.


#7 Dirkk

Dirkk
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 274 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:12:45 AM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 07:05 AM

Thanks for the explanations.

 

Yes, indeed, very interesting the review, I didn't know that at all. It becomes more compliacated as I would have thought. Very strange, USB ports have max. 500 ma, drives need more, but why is it offered like that, why do one manufacture USB ports with 500 ma, although external drvies need more?


Windows 10 Home, 64bit


#8 Ant.Man

Ant.Man

  • Members
  • 129 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Just left of DC
  • Local time:11:45 PM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 08:24 AM

why do one manufacture USB ports with 500 ma

 

That is the USB design standard.

 

although external drvies need more?

 

A drive is sometimes used in a device that it was not designed to be used in.


This is not my signature.


#9 Dirkk

Dirkk
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 274 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:12:45 AM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 08:59 AM

Good, I understand.

 

So, may be the best would be just to use an external 3,5'' HD with a switch. And it would be cheaper.


Windows 10 Home, 64bit


#10 Ant.Man

Ant.Man

  • Members
  • 129 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Just left of DC
  • Local time:11:45 PM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 10:45 AM

That is what I usually recommend.  With USB and eSATA connection.


This is not my signature.


#11 Dirkk

Dirkk
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 274 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:12:45 AM

Posted 13 March 2014 - 12:46 PM

Well, OK, I will do it. Many thanks for your help.


Windows 10 Home, 64bit


#12 smax013

smax013

  • BC Advisor
  • 2,329 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Not Telling
  • Local time:11:45 PM

Posted 20 March 2014 - 12:30 AM

There are "portable" external drives (i.e. external drives that use 2.5" internal drives and are generally bus-powered, but can be powered externally sometimes as well) that have power switches.

Here are two options:

http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/firewire/on-the-go

http://eshop.macsales.com/shop/firewire/EliteALmini/eSATA_FW800_FW400_USB

I am sure there are other options, but I am familiar with the OWC models as I have used previous versions of both (i.e. their old versions before USB 3.0). For me, I tend to "build" my drives…that is I buy the enclosure without the drive and then by the internal drive that I want. Even if I where to buy with the internal drive included, I would still tend to buy from OWC rather than the likes of Seagate or WD mainly because it is very easy to replace the internal drive with the OWC drives, while Seagate and WD seem to make that very difficult. Of course, the other reason is that I have a couple of Macs and like to have drives with Firewire…and OWC is more "aimed" at Mac users, but their drives work fine with Windows PCs too.

If you are not going to need to move the drive around much (i.e. you are not using it with a laptop that you take when you travel, etc), then I would likely say you will be better off with a "desktop" external drive (i.e. one that uses a 3.5" internal drive and that will require external power). You will get more bang for your buck (i.e. you can likely get more capacity for less money).

Edited by smax013, 20 March 2014 - 12:31 AM.


#13 Dirkk

Dirkk
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 274 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:12:45 AM

Posted 20 March 2014 - 03:49 AM

Thank you very much, smax013,

 

Yes, I do not need to take the drives with me (may be besides of a single one) as I need them for back up and for the original data which stay at home, so I would prefer the 3,5 drives, indeed. Yes, and it is cheaper, with more speed, more space. The more capacity the better. Thanks for the links, that drives are a little bit more expensive (and, of course better) than normal 2,5 drives, if I see it right. I do not know how big the difference between 7200 RPM and 5400 is, especially when you edit files. Transferring data will be much more faster, I assume.


Windows 10 Home, 64bit


#14 OldPhil

OldPhil

    Doppleganger


  • Members
  • 4,123 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Gender:Male
  • Location:Long Island New York
  • Local time:12:45 AM

Posted 20 March 2014 - 05:10 AM

Make sure you get an enclosure that has cooling, I am seeing these un-cooled drive failing when left on for hours.


Honesty & Integrity Above All!


#15 Dirkk

Dirkk
  • Topic Starter

  • Members
  • 274 posts
  • OFFLINE
  •  
  • Local time:12:45 AM

Posted 20 March 2014 - 08:56 AM

Ah, really? A fan (or do you mean another kind of cooling?) is very loud, I assume. I have some old drives with a fan, unbelievable noise. The usually available hard disk, external, do not have a cooling, if I see it right, no active one at least.


Windows 10 Home, 64bit





0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users