Thursday, August 12, 2010

Putting the computer in energy-saving mode is evil?

On Toshiba support forum a kid name Bob sustains that two Toshiba tech guys sais to him that is dangerous to keep your computer in stand-by/hibernate mode. So he would like to start his computer faster but without using the stand-by/hibernate mode:
> The holy grail for me would be to use sleep mode 100% but I'm worried that would be too much extra wear and tear on the machine (energy consumption is not a factor). Opinions please.

So, here is my answer to that kid:
Bob is time for you to learn some stuff about computers. Go buy a good book instead of listening to Toshiba support tech.
First of all if you really care about your computer you should care about ENERGY CONSUPTION! Decrease the energy consumption to half and you will expand the life of your computer with few years! How? Simple. Keep your processor to 100% utilization and it will start to overheat so badly that your mainboard will turn brownish. Probably I should post some pictures from my old Toshiba laptop (though this is true for all laptops) to see how the heat affected the main board. The next to fail is the coolers because they will start to work at maximum speed in order to remove the heat from your laptop. Also, don't care about power saving and keep your hard drive always on and if possible, working (transferring data). The heat literally kills the hard drive! The tubes that are illuminating the screen have also a limited life. Keep the laptop on overnight and I guaranty that you will get a "nice" milky/dark image in only one year.
If you have a powerful graphic card just don't use the utility provided and keep it at maximum power all the time (even if you don't play games) and if will suck A LOT of power which of course will generate even more heat.
All these power sucking devices will drain a lot of power from your power adapter which will also start to overheat and when you are mobile they will empty your battery in 50 minutes instead of 2-3 hours. The more discharge/charge cycles you put on your battery the sooner it will die.

So, all this was the receipt for killing your laptop by not carrying about power consumption. Now, if you make your computer to live long (and prosper) all you have to do is to choose a power saving profile in control panel. Just few clicks and you have hundreds of dollars on energy and hundreds of dollar on hardware (you won't have to buy a new laptop next year).

Toshiba, Energy Star program, Microsoft are struggling to make computers to consume less energy for a reason. IF you think you are better than them you should write a book on how bad is to have a eco-friendly computer.

If two Toshiba guys said that conserving power (by keeping the computer in standby/hibernate) is bad (which I doubt) it was just a mistake. Some other people here are saying the other way. Actually my Toshiba laptop has a green button which puts the laptop in eco-friendly mode where the hibernate and stand-by modes are active. In hibernate mode the computer is 100% switched off. In stand-by mode only the RAM is receiving power. However, the RAM does not wear and tear and the power consumption is so small that almost doesn't count.

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