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How to make your old internal HDD stop running and be quiet

Community Manager

I realized after installing my new Intel SSD (Which makes my computereco amazingly fast now), that my old hard drive was still constantly running, even though I had Zero data on it.

One of the benefits I hoped to get from an SSD was a quieter system. After some reading on the web, it seemed there isn't any solution readily available to make your computer ignore extra internal hard drives.

I opened the case and luckily it's very accessible for me to pull the power cord out of the extra hard drive. Now my computer is much quieter.... But that is not a good solution for a lot of reasons... Constantly removing and attaching the power cord can lead to wear/damage. Plus I'd have to power off/power up each time I wanted to access data, inconvenient/inefficient.

tldr; Are there any software solutions or options/attributes I can adjust to make the extra/backup drive remain unused/not spinning and silent unless I specifically choose to write/read from it?

Thanks for the help.

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3 Replies
Community Manager

You probably already have the software. ;-)

In control panel, go to System and Security then hit the Power Options link.

From here, you can change plan settings on which ever plan you are using and change advanced power settings. There is an option to turn of HDDs after some number of minutes.

If that doesn't work, or there's some weird behavior with the SSD, you can consider flashing the FW on your HDD. What model is your HDD? There might be "green" firmware that will send it to power save mode if it's not accessed after some time. My second drive on my home computer does this all the time. Never bothered to figure out why - since it's not broke! ;-) If I remember I'll poke it.

Another option would be to look around the BIOS for some advanced power saving options, but this is just a stab in the dark

Community Manager

Thanks Jason! Seems like the Power Options is the best solution for me that works, I tested it out.

On Windows 7:

- Click Start(Windows icon)

- Type in "Power Options", Click "Power Options"

- Beside your currently selected power plan, click "Change plan settings"

- Click "Change advanced power settings"

- Select the + beside "Hard Disk"

- Select the + beside "turn off hard disk after"

- Set it to 1 minute.

- Click apply

It seems using this method the lowest you can go is 1 minute. I tried 0 and 0.5 and it just won't stay entered, will change back to never.

The drive turns off after about a minute after start up so long as no programs are accessing it. So if you have defrag/antivirus/backups running, you might need to make sure you schedule/block these however you would like to. If you do access it yourself, it will turn on temporarily until there is a 1 minute break in activity, then it will shut off again.

Enjoy super quiet super speeds everyone!

Community Manager

I should also realize much of the noise was not from the old hard drive but from the fans running as well. For people to keep in mind when trying to quieten up their computers,