Subject: Re: Western Digital 250G hard drive
To: Manuel Bouyer <>
From: Andy Isaacson <>
List: tech-kern
Date: 12/04/2003 15:11:43
On Thu, Dec 04, 2003 at 09:58:11PM +0100, Manuel Bouyer wrote:
> On Thu, Dec 04, 2003 at 08:41:28AM +0200, Ian McIntosh wrote:
> > Thanks again for all the feedback.
> > 
> > I am quite sure that the airflow issue is a non-issue. When the drive is
> > connected on
> > both systems it is out in the open and I don't intend wrapping a parka
> > around to see what that does :-)......though to see how hot it gets
> > before failure would be quite fun but expensive.
> > 
> > As an extra thought, I was wondering if the windows system puts the
> > drive into a sleep mode when not in use whereas the BSD system
> > doesn't? That would explain the difference and also make sense as the
> > drive is left as a slave and nothing written to it.
> > 
> > Is this a possibility?
> I don't think so. Drives (exept laptop drives) are not designed for frequent
> spin up/spin down.
> Some BIOSes have an option to set the standby timer, but by experience this
> makes the drives die sonner.

The rotational engine is not the only mechanism in a hard drive that
might be influenced by "power saving" or "low noise" mode.  A more
significant issue is how the seek mechanism works.  It's my
understanding that at least some manufacturers have several selectable
profiles for how quickly the drive heads seek; slower seeks mean that
the electromagnets don't need as much current, which translates to less

Seems like a more significant issue than the spinning portion, to me.