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Thread: Removing power from harddisks without shutting down

  1. #1
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    Removing power from harddisks without shutting down

    Hi, im running Xp pro on compact flash with EWF installed and working. However, i also have a second harddisk which contains all my large files on... this is writen to when i upload files via ftp.

    My question is, i know its ok to remove power from CF card as nothing is ever written to it. Is the same true for the harddisk? Surely windows is parking the harddisks for you when it shuts down? Or, do the disks have enough power stored when power is removed to park themselves?

    I take it a lot of people run systems like this with harddisks containing films/mp3s etc, would be interested to hear from people and if my concerns are valid.

    Thanks in advance,

    Chris

  2. #2
    FLAC ShawJohn's Avatar
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    don't touch ide cables or power lead to a hard disk (whilst PC is on) unless you want to stuff it up and lose all your data!

  3. #3
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    CF cards don't take much power, don't bother to shut them down. It is possible to have the hard disks spin down and enter a low-power state under software control. Windows has some basic control built in by default (Display Properties -> Screen Saver -> Monitor Power (of all places, gotta love windoze!)) but there are some other apps that provide greater control.

    Windows will automagically spin the disk back up when it needs to access it.

    -p.

  4. #4
    FLAC strohj's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by g18c
    Hi, im running Xp pro on compact flash with EWF installed and working. However, i also have a second harddisk which contains all my large files on... this is writen to when i upload files via ftp.

    My question is, i know its ok to remove power from CF card as nothing is ever written to it. Is the same true for the harddisk? Surely windows is parking the harddisks for you when it shuts down? Or, do the disks have enough power stored when power is removed to park themselves?

    I take it a lot of people run systems like this with harddisks containing films/mp3s etc, would be interested to hear from people and if my concerns are valid.

    Thanks in advance,

    Chris
    just curious... but why do you wanna turn them off while your pc is still running?
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  5. #5
    FLAC ShawJohn's Avatar
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    Just get a Firewire external case for it... Problem solved!

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    sorry i didnt explain myself very well and people seem confused!!

    What i want is to remove power, ie turn the ignition off, so power is removed from the entire system at once.

    i have disabled write cache on the harddisk so as long as no data writes are taking place at time of power removal i presume no data loss will occur. i have looked into hardisks too and they autopark their heads when power is removed... got this from wikipedia

    Sound resonable?

    Chris

  7. #7
    FLAC ShawJohn's Avatar
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    Ok. I thought you meant to disconnect the drive whilst PC is running!

    Killing PSU power shouldn'tt do any harm as the PSU stores enough power to allow drives to park before being powered down...

  8. #8
    Well, He asked for it. WebDog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by g18c
    sorry i didnt explain myself very well and people seem confused!!

    What i want is to remove power, ie turn the ignition off, so power is removed from the entire system at once.

    i have disabled write cache on the harddisk so as long as no data writes are taking place at time of power removal i presume no data loss will occur. i have looked into hardisks too and they autopark their heads when power is removed... got this from wikipedia

    Sound resonable?

    Chris
    Do you have a shutdown controller? or are you just going to kill power?
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  9. #9
    Variable Bitrate will1384's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by g18c
    sorry i didnt explain myself very well and people seem confused!!

    What i want is to remove power, ie turn the ignition off, so power is removed from the entire system at once.

    i have disabled write cache on the harddisk so as long as no data writes are taking place at time of power removal i presume no data loss will occur. i have looked into hardisks too and they autopark their heads when power is removed... got this from wikipedia

    Sound resonable?

    Chris
    I have used that for years - never killed windows XP yet - just make
    shure write cache is disabled - I dont use any shutdown controler at all
    - I use a relay to turn a inverter off and on - the relay gets power
    from the head unit - blue wire, it also turns my amp on

    some day I will make a tank circuit - just to keep the computer running
    for like 10-15 min - for truck stops, gas stations ect ect

  10. #10
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    I suppose the advantage with the blue wire is that when the car is running the blue wire is at 12v, then the engine is off its at 0v.

    With the ignition wire you just get a _-_ pulse?
    And there is no way to detect when the engine is turned off with the ignition wire?

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