Do you leave them plugged in ? Or just connect via USB when needed for data transfer and storage
I tend to do the latter, William. After all, they have got an MTBF. Actually, mine's always plugged in via USB but not always switched on. And (I think) it saves USB bandwidth.
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Cant be that hard a question , Just wondering what you Tech guys do ?
OK Cross post AM, What the bloody hell are you talking about , I'm A Noob at this type of thing , Whats a MTBF, You mean keep it connected , But switch it off , It's a WD 1 trbit My Book Essiential
Last edited by William; 16-02-2012 at 4:56pm.
Hi Bill, I have two external WD 1 Tb drives that I mirror - both self powered thought. One stays connected and the other is often stored in my book case just in case someone who needs a drive more than me borrows it :-( if you know what i mean, Not used to that type of thing in the country but it has started happening as farms are turned into suburbs and town grows closer. We even have graffiti in Lowood now, who would have thought :-). back to the topic.
I run all my usb via an external powered hub so power to drive the usb is a bit more isolated from the PC. The USB is nothing more than a media channel that allows data to flow over it, no different to having the internal drive read write logic being run through the system apart for speed.
I see not requirement to disconnect the drives unless you want to secure one when not about, you experience boot up issues with resource assignments of hardware at bootup which is not at all common these days with Windows 7 and Mac systems or you are powering all from the USB port on the PC, then you may want to consider the power tht the PC is pushing out to power external devices, although the supply in the PC may meet the rating for all the USB ports on the box it may shorten the life of the power supply in the pc. Having said that, most of us upgrade our pc's well before any component gives up the ghost :-)
Hope tht helps mate.
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Thanks Mike , I'll plug it in when needed , The Pooter struggles on start up when connected , Whats windows 7, I'm still running XP SP2 I'm running a new mother board , An Intel G620 with 4 gb of ram , Nothing special I know , Thanks for the info
G'day Bill, I leave my three plugged in and turned on 24/7. One is USB has been going for over 2 years no issues, backs up each night about 11:00pm. The other is 2tb wifi that backs up whenever it feels like it. It is continually saving my work as I modify anything. Been running about 18mths with no issues. Hope I haven't just jinxed myself by writing this
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MTBF is mean time before failure. A product has a certain average lifespan, so it helps to not have it running all the time if you don't need to.
I have the drive always hooked in to a USB port - which may be irrelevant - but then only switch it on when I need it.
I have a 1TB WD My Book Essential and I only plug it in when I'm using it which is usually only when importing photos to Lightroom, I make a copy of them on the external drive straight away in case the worst happens. I'm thinking about getting a second one for off site rather than the slow upload to the cloud.
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I don't keep my external HDDs connected unless I need them.
I have four, three of which are used for backups (two on-site and one off-site).
The fourth disk is a spare which currently isn't used.
Given my only computer is a laptop, it's not practical to have peripherals connected when they're not needed.
If I had a desktop machine (I stopped using those in 2006), I'd keep a disk permanently connected so that Time Machine could run backups automatically as it was intended to do.
With expanding file sizes , I have put in a NAS on my home network which has 5 drive bays but currently I only have 2x 3 TB Mirrored drives installed. There are a few NAS brands so do a bit of homework. Mine has a data sync app that runs on my PC to back up in real time and it has let my iPad print in a non Apple environment.
I might add, you really need to have be a hard wired network and I wired my house as part of this project so everything is now Gb networks everywhere but wireless is still in the mix too. The NAS is connected to the switch with 2 x Gb trunked network points so it has 2 Gb of bandwidth so it never gets saturated with a few users.
This might not be for everyone but I think it is much better than the external HDD I used to use.
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As for USB bandwidth; it depends. Generally every pair of USB ports on a PC share a USB root hub. So the total theoretical bandwidth for the (v1.0/1.1/2.0/etc) root hub is already shared between the two ports. But USB also has a bandwidth allocation scheme, whereby different devices will (only) utilise part of the total bandwidth; exactly how much may be dictated by the other device(s) on the same root hub. For example, a USB mouse will get guaranteed bandwidth on a hub, whilst a drive on the same hub will only be allocated any remaining bandwidth; ie. it can't degrade the mouse performance. OTOH two drives on the same hub will compete for bandwidth.
Of course, plugging two drives into ports on different root hubs will not affect one-another in any way - at least not in respect to USB performance.
Last edited by tcdev; 17-02-2012 at 5:32pm.
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It could be argued that the mechanical activity associated with powering up and down a drive (ie, spinning up the platters) could be more 'stressful' on the mechanics of that drive than leaving it powered all the time, but despite that, I am recluctant to leave external disks connected to my laptop other than when I am using them (such as the Time Machine backup I'm running right now).
While a drive is connected, there exists the possibility for damage to the drive either through user error (ie, accidentally deleting content), or power surges. For those susceptible to computer viruses and other malware, that is also a threat.
I have a surge suppressor connected to the AC mains from which my machine draws power, and I recommend the use of one; but during electrical storms, I still disconnect the mains power just to be safe. Common sense is a far more effective method of electrical safety than a surge suppressor.
Given I use a laptop only, the battery is essentially a form of UPS. Of course, if the power is disconnected due to a storm or other electricity failure, we're offline, as the router and cable modem won't have power.
Using an HSPA dongle would get around that in most cases, but unfortunately my need for an HSPA dongle is so infrequent that it's not worth investing in one; and unfortunately the pre-paid dongles all expire after a short timeframe. If they had no expiry date, I'd buy one and just keep it for when I need it.
I went looking today to answer some questions , Had a look on www.wdc.com seeing no instructions or Install disc came with the hard drive , Anybody interested , that has a WD My Book Essentials PDF file might come in handy , Gonna take a while to get my head around this http://www.wdc.com/wdproducts/librar...779-705053.pdf, Did'nt think there was so much in them
Last edited by William; 19-02-2012 at 4:37pm.
External HDDs generally don't come with software on CD/DVD, or printed instructions.
You'll find that the software and 'readme' files are actually on the HDD itself. There'll be some sort of .exe installer for whatever software came with the disk.
I never use any of thar stuff, though; it's just a disk. I format new disks in my OS's native format, and then do my backups.
Last edited by Xenedis; 19-02-2012 at 4:47pm.