When do you turn off your Ubuntu boxes?

ruscook ruscook_oz at yahoo.com.au
Sun Dec 3 20:36:47 UTC 2006

On Fri, 2006-12-01 at 10:15 +0000, norman wrote:

> > > I leave my box on most of the time. It is probably because I believe
> > > that there is more strain on components with switching on and off rather
> > > than running constantly. 
> > 
> > I don't really believe that.  I think the components that are most
> > likely to wear are the mechanical ones: drives and fans.  Those wear out
> > with every spin. 
> < snip >
> You must understand that I am quite ancient and my memory goes back to
> the days before transistors were invented. We used 'valves' or 'tubes'
> and these lasted much longer by being left on permanently. Also I
> suspect that the quality of resistors, capacitors etc was no where near
> as good as those used today.

Hi Norman 
I "only " go back to CPM and Apple II days in the early 80's, however
you are still 100% correct in attributing thermal shock to equipment
when powered up or down. Power down can cause a spike and overload kit,
power up can cause surges but DEFINITELY causes heat to cold solid state
components which can cause them to fail. 

Others are also right when they point out fans and hard disks are
mechanical and more likely to fail than the solid state components. And
yes hard disks can still develop stiction (although no where near as
prevalent as in the 80's and early 90's) which will cause hard disks to
fail on power on after being left on for a number of years. 

Even so, power on/off is I think a moot point in a lot of cases now a
days as quality of all components has improved since the 80's. I tend to
leave my computers on, 1 is a server (with web and mail) and I turn off
my desktop about every other day (part of the reason to leave it on is
a) suspend still doesn't work properly and b) I have a cron job backing
it up to the server in the wee hours.

Kind Regards Russell
sales at windsorcycles.com.au
ph. 02 4577 3209
Linux user #369094

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