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View Full Version : A question about leaving computer on?



Steven190
09-04-2007, 04:01 PM
I have been turning Off my game computer after I am done.

My question is is this a good pratice?

Who leaves there computer on all the time or is it a good pratice to shut it down when not in use.

R_Target
09-04-2007, 04:08 PM
Mine stays on at 100% load 24/7 as I do distributed computing for Stanford University's Folding at Home (http://folding.stanford.edu/) medical research program.

http://i7.tinypic.com/4kmreqx.gif

capt_frank
09-04-2007, 04:14 PM
My wife is also very pleased that I fold my own at home.

BTW, I turn mine off when not in use.

SeaFireLIV
09-04-2007, 04:15 PM
Strange question, I would`ve thought it logical (plus saving on wear and tear and cash) to switch off your PC after use. the only times i`ve ever seen Pcs continuously on 24/7 have been with business companies and security.

A slight problem I`ve had recently... I switched my daughter`s PC to a different wall socket in her room because of position change for her access to the net. Now every time she switches off her PC at the wall switch (after switching her Pc off normally) all the electric goes out apart from the lights in the whole place.

stalkervision
09-04-2007, 04:16 PM
Vista has a nice "power down" feature... http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_cool.gif

mazexx
09-04-2007, 04:26 PM
Well, I understand your question. In the good old days it was considered that the wear on the components in a computer at startup contributed to about 50 hours of normal "running" wear. Spinning up drives, initial power spikes etc. Modern PSU:s and MB:s are a lot better at starting "nicely" so I guess that it's a lot better. The drives still get a hammering when reving up to 7.200, 10.000 or 15.000 rpm. I guess that the wear from that is handled better today but we all know when HD:s start screaming... In 95% of the cases I've encountered it's when you boot.

I used to run my computer at home 7x24 earlier but nowadays they make to much noice so my wife is not that happy about it. Doesn't feel right to shut them down though! Computers are made for running!

/Mazex

Monterey13
09-04-2007, 04:33 PM
Just imagine that critical power supply fan going out whilst you are asleep. PSU's have also been known to catch fire from time to time, as well as monitors. Is it worth taking the chance?

I am a Firefighter, and let's just say I've seen it more than once.

My computer goes off at night, or when I'm not home.

BrotherVoodoo
09-04-2007, 04:34 PM
All of my home systems are up basically 24/7. I usually reboot them once a week whether they need it or not.

TheGozr
09-04-2007, 04:37 PM
Well to me i turn off my PC every night since windows is not good enough to keep all clean 24/7.

FritzGryphon
09-04-2007, 04:40 PM
I've had a lot of variation in the failure rate of my hard drives. Some last 6 months and some last 5 years.

This wide variation suggests to me that booting your machine repeatedly has little or no effect on the life of the drive. The life of the drive has more to do with the type, and inherent defects (otherwise they would all last the same time).

Even if booting did affect lifespan slightly, the savings in electricity would far exceed whatever additional cost for hard disks.

A hard disk costs maybe $100 and might lasts me an average of 3 years, regardless of how often I boot the machine (I boot mine many times a day).

So that's an average cost of 10 cents per day for the hard disk. A low estimate for the electrical consumption of a computer used for 4 hours a day and left on the remaining 20 hours is about 30-40 cents per day, for a slow desktop computer with an LCD. If I turn off the computer for those additional 20 hours, I could save maybe half that amount (because an idling PC uses less power than an active one). The cost of the 20 hours of daily idle time could be $80 a year or more.

So disks are cheap and power is expensive. You should turn it off for the same reason you turn off a light bulb when you leave the room, or turn off your car instead of idling.

Here's some further information: http://michaelbluejay.com/electricity/computers.html

JG52Uther
09-04-2007, 04:50 PM
Mine goes off when not in use.

flox
09-04-2007, 05:02 PM
Lately I've been hibernating my home PC when I'm not using it (which has been less and less since I am currently able to get all my internet surfing done while at work http://forums.ubi.com/groupee_common/emoticons/icon_biggrin.gif ). I used to leave it on 24x7 so I could stay signed into my instant messaging clients (which I use less and less) and because I hated waiting for windows to load.

I prefer the hibernate feature because it's faster than a full boot and I can just leave any apps I was using open and they will be right there waiting when I resume windows (unless the resume fails, which happens occasionally).

I also like to leave the PC off while I'm not at home because it uses less power (shave a little off the bill every month). Finally there are some security concerns (http://forums.ubi.com/eve/forums/a/tpc/f/23110283/m/2321096875?r=2321096875#2321096875) to be aware of if you leave your PC running all the time.

TgD Thunderbolt56
09-04-2007, 05:07 PM
Originally posted by JG52Uther:
Mine goes off when not in use.


ditto. With 5 pc's, 3 TV's, 2 AC units, a pool pump and 3 kids I need to save all the juice I can. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/53.gif

BaldieJr
09-04-2007, 05:12 PM
leaving an idle pc on is wasteful and irresponsible. no argument exists that can justify leaving idle pc's on. not even ignorance.

claypidgon
09-04-2007, 05:29 PM
Would you leave your car running all day?

flox
09-04-2007, 05:39 PM
That's why I don't even leave my cell phone charger plugged in when I'm not using it.

Haigotron
09-04-2007, 06:37 PM
I leave mine on 24/7, especially during holidays! no breaks for it. Never, ever had any problems with it.

I have come to the conclusion that it likes the abuse.

No seriously, I leave mine on.

leitmotiv
09-04-2007, 06:43 PM
Originally posted by Monterey13:
Just imagine that critical power supply fan going out whilst you are asleep. PSU's have also been known to catch fire from time to time, as well as monitors. Is it worth taking the chance?

I am a Firefighter, and let's just say I've seen it more than once.

My computer goes off at night, or when I'm not home.

Thanks for the reality check, M.

Waldo.Pepper
09-04-2007, 06:53 PM
If you are interested is keeping your computer forever then leave it on.
It will last longer, just like all electrical things.

HOWEVER, what if you are out and the fan stops turning, and then it starts a fire with all the "computer pubes" that have collected in the case acting as kindling.
In an effort to extend the life of a computer that will be obsolete in 2.5 years you have burned down your house.

Ask yourself if it is worth the risk and act accordingly.

R_Target
09-04-2007, 06:55 PM
Originally posted by Monterey13:
Just imagine that critical power supply fan going out whilst you are asleep. PSU's have also been known to catch fire from time to time, as well as monitors. Is it worth taking the chance?

I am a Firefighter, and let's just say I've seen it more than once.


I've seen shoddy components do all kinds of things, including catching on fire. Never had a problem with quality stuff.

Stew278
09-04-2007, 07:15 PM
I shut mine down when I'm not using them to save energy and because they are kind of noisy.

R_Target
09-04-2007, 07:24 PM
Originally posted by Stew278:
I shut mine down when I'm not using them to save energy and because they are kind of noisy.

That's what I would do if I wasn't doing distributed computing.

knightflyte
09-04-2007, 08:12 PM
Here's another way to look at it.

Since several posts in other topics have mentioned being green I'll ponder this.

With many places like California having a hard time meeting up with demand for electricity during such high temperatures, then why not power down, and save a bit for what needs might really need to be met as opposed to leaving it run 100% of the time.


I wonder how much electrical power the average home consumes per annum as opposed to 10 years ago? I'd venture that electricity use has spiked in that time. With more computers needing more power to run at optimum settings I'd imagine consumption has risen surprisingly fast.

Monterey13
09-04-2007, 08:17 PM
Originally posted by R_Target:
I've seen shoddy components do all kinds of things, including catching on fire. Never had a problem with quality stuff.

I have worked on some of the most expensive electronics in the world, both medical and mil-spec. ANYTHING can short out, I don't care how expensive it is.

Better to be safe than sorry.

han freak solo
09-04-2007, 08:48 PM
If not in use, I turn it off. Less dust bunny cleaning is one benefit.

Our work PCs and server ought to turned off every evening, too. That would mess up automated scans and updates in the evening hours, though.

TX-EcoDragon
09-05-2007, 01:52 AM
Off when not in use. . I am "EcoDragon" afterall!

mrsiCkstar
09-05-2007, 02:12 AM
My computer goes off at night, or when I'm not home.

Same as Monterey here. I usually turn mine on when I get home from work and it stays on until I go to bed wether I'm on it or not. But if I'm not in the house or I'm sleeping, the PC's always off.

major_setback
09-05-2007, 02:22 AM
Trying to melt the polar ice caps?

F19_Orheim
09-05-2007, 02:25 AM
when not in use, switch it off.... we are consuming too much as it is already...

DuxCorvan
09-05-2007, 03:38 AM
I shut it off because it's in my room: it's noisy and heats the whole room a lot. If you're living in some warm/cold country that does not matter, but here in Andalusia and in summer, night temperatures are rarely below 25ºC, and in my room, with the PC on, can raise above 30ºC. Try to sleep then.

gdfo
09-05-2007, 03:49 AM
Off. Otherwise no matter how much RAM you have your pc will slow down. Rebooting clears the RAM. Plus of you turn off the power to a dsl modem it resets you ip.

Quenaelin
09-05-2007, 04:07 AM
Computers and all equipment should be off if you don't use them, even TV:s should be switched off not in standby mode.

R_Target
09-05-2007, 04:34 AM
Originally posted by Monterey13:
I have worked on some of the most expensive electronics in the world, both medical and mil-spec. ANYTHING can short out, I don't care how expensive it is.

Better to be safe than sorry.

Yeah, I hear you, anything can short out. I guess it's a question of long odds.

tagTaken2
09-05-2007, 05:28 AM
Originally posted by DuxCorvan:
here in Andalusia and in summer, night temperatures are rarely below 25ºC, and in my room, with the PC on, can raise above 30ºC. Try to sleep then.

http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif

That sucks. The place I'm in at the moment has **** ventilation and a greenhouse atrium roof, so I know what you're talking about. Not looking forward to summer. I don't so much sleep, as pass out.

Agt_Homer
09-05-2007, 08:09 AM
Wow, I rember people saying that if you used your computer daily to never shut it off since, like others said, startup was supposed to be murder on the system. Of course that was 10 years ago, I guess technology might have changed but I never did.

I guess I'll start turning off the computer when I go to bed. Learn something new everyday.

jarink
09-05-2007, 08:59 AM
There are still a lot of people that say leaving your computer on is less stressful on the components. While the reliability of things like hard drives has increased tremendously since the 90s, a different issue has become more common: heating/cooling stress.

When your PC is off it's at room temperature, say about 76ºF/24ºC. When it's running, the CPU, GPU, RAM and motherboard (and other components) can heat up considerably, up to about 120ºF/50ºC or more. When it heats, the parts will expand slightly. When you turn it off, it cools back down and contracts back to normal size. This expansion/contraction will eventually cause fractures, just like on a highway in the US midwest. http://forums.ubi.com/images/smilies/16x16_smiley-wink.gif

Me, I turn my PC off at night. During the day, though, I use the "Stand By" feature to go into a low-power mode when I'm not going to use it for a bit. This lets the hard drives (and fans) spin down and the video blank, which greatly reduces power consumption. It also is a lot faster to bring back up than from Hibernation.