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Spinning down Drives every few hours or never spin down drives ?


Maticks

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I do love Unraid's ability to spin down drives i am not using for media access etc.

I have mine set to spin down after 3 hours, they pretty stay offline for 6-7 hours a day.

 

That being said with Red drives and Ironwolf drives entering an idle power state is it better to leave these drives online all the time and let the disk go into a lower power mode.

I have had this debate with some friends that spinning down hard drives powers down the motor and when it comes back online it has to start from a stopped state.

low power mode still spins the disk just at a lower speed and is less wear on the motor vs a stopped disk.

 

Are we harming these disks with stop/starts? maybe desktop drives are better to be spun down and the proper NAS disks are designed to be always spinning?

Looking online seems to show its bad to stop start disks and its also bad to leave disks on and let them heat up. its hard to say whats good vs bad.

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Most believe leaving the disks constantly spinning is better for they health (as long as the temperature is under control, ideally <40C), having said that I don't see a few spin ups a week significantly affect them, but would avoid if possible more than one spin up a day on average.

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33 minutes ago, johnnie.black said:

having said that I don't see a few spin ups a week significantly affect them, but would avoid if possible more than one spin up a day on average.


A HDD would normally be designed for at least 30000 start/stop cycles.

And at least 100000 load/unload cycles - i.e. number of times they park the heads.

 

Many disks can do several times higher figures. But as with everything else, some drives fails before reaching the expected limit so it is always good to try to keep below the figures specified in the datasheets.

 

Anyway - if assuming 8 years of use, you want to stop the drive less than 10 times/day. Preferably less. I prefer to stay under 3-4 stops/day for 2.5" drives and 1 stop/day for 3.5" drives - 2.5" drives often have way better specifications for start/stops since they are often intended for laptop use or in very high-density servers where it's a big advantage to be able to save energy. But lots of my storage disks have 1 or 2-digit start/stop counts when it's time to retire them - it's only drives that I know will very seldom get accesses that I let spin down to save on power and heat. The main storage server averages one disk start/stop cycle every 2000 hours.

 

It's often the load/unload cycle count that is way easier to reach. Especially for lots of WD drive models that defaults to having extremely aggressive profiles. If assuming 8 years of use, you want less than 30 head load cycles/day. I prefer less than 10/day.

 

One interesting thing is that it's very often during the spin up that disks will fail. I'm not sure if it's because they run their internal self-test then, or if it is the additional load put on them when spinning up.

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40 minutes ago, Maticks said:

Mines gone up a bit load cycle count 24337

 

The number itself doesn't mean anything without the age of the drive.

 

If your drive has been powered for about 2 years, then it is doing about 30 load cycles/day and will reach 100k when the drive is 8 years old. And the specific drive might be specified for 300k load cycles and not 100k load cycles.

 

But if the drive is much newer than 2 years, then you definitely need to think twice about your usage pattern.

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14 hours ago, Maticks said:

I do love Unraid's ability to spin down drives i am not using for media access etc.

I have mine set to spin down after 3 hours, they pretty stay offline for 6-7 hours a day.

 

That being said with Red drives and Ironwolf drives entering an idle power state is it better to leave these drives online all the time and let the disk go into a lower power mode.

I have had this debate with some friends that spinning down hard drives powers down the motor and when it comes back online it has to start from a stopped state.

low power mode still spins the disk just at a lower speed and is less wear on the motor vs a stopped disk.

 

Are we harming these disks with stop/starts? maybe desktop drives are better to be spun down and the proper NAS disks are designed to be always spinning?

Looking online seems to show its bad to stop start disks and its also bad to leave disks on and let them heat up. its hard to say whats good vs bad.

 

I use unraid since April 2010 and always spindown my drives for powersaving - i have never had a outage due to spindowns.

At the beginning i used Samsung EcoGreen F2 desktop drives with 1,5TB, then WD-Greens with 2TB - no problem with spindowns at all.

One of this Samsung is working as external USB-drive - now 8 years 3 months old - still working.

My oldest disk working at unraid is a WD30EFRX with 4 years 5 months, 11.027 hours and 10.320 LCCs (Spec says max. 600.000 LLCs).

I normaly change my disks every 4-5 years for capacity reasons. I dont see any problems with spindowns so far.

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