CR&P Poll: Turning Off Your PCs

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Spalls Hurgenson

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Jul 18, 2022, 7:21:31 PMJul 18
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CR&P: "Completely Random And Pointless". Just in case you were
wondering. ;-)

So... it's the end of the day. Time to stop working (or go to bed). Do
you turn off your PC or leave it on?

Much to my shame, I tend to fall into the latter category. My PC is
configured to sleep after a few hours anyway, so in the end there will
be some power-saving, and - who knows - I may suddenly want to use the
PC again and who wants to wait 10 seconds to get to the log-in prompt
again? Plus, all my backups and system maintenance are configured for
1AM ;-) I do power off the big-screen monitor though, just because it
doesn't go into sleep mode properly.

Oh, and once a week (every Sunday night!) I give the PC's the "night
off" and power them all down fully. Mostly I do this to ensure that I
don't have any nagging memory leaks or anything that linger around for
more than a week.

When I do shutdown, I always do a "full shutdown" rather than the
default hybrid shutdowns that Windows8/10 insist on, though. Sure, the
hybrid shutdowns may save me a few seconds bootup but I barely notice
the difference anyway, and I like the idea of starting afresh. Decades
of supporting Microsoft operating systems just don't inspire me to
trust their memory management, I guess ;-)

But I'm really wondering if I should get into the habit of powering
down more consistently at the end of each night. It's only a little
thing when it comes to the environment, but it adds up if everyone
does it...


Mike S.

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Jul 18, 2022, 7:32:52 PMJul 18
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On Mon, 18 Jul 2022 19:21:21 -0400, Spalls Hurgenson
<spallsh...@gmail.com> wrote:

>CR&P: "Completely Random And Pointless". Just in case you were
>wondering. ;-)
>
>So... it's the end of the day. Time to stop working (or go to bed). Do
>you turn off your PC or leave it on?

I turn it off at night and when I am going to leave it for more then
an hour. It boots up in under 30 seconds so turning it off is no big
deal for me.

As an aside, I have never once put my computer in sleep mode. It is
either on or off and nothing in between for me. :)

Dimensional Traveler

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Jul 18, 2022, 8:06:43 PMJul 18
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Always on. SETI's distributed computer project may be done but there
are others using the BOINC system so I'm doing work for two of those.
The two monitors get turned off when I'm asleep or away.


--
I've done good in this world. Now I'm tired and just want to be a cranky
dirty old man.

Justisaur

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Jul 18, 2022, 9:52:45 PMJul 18
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Leave it on. Patches occur at night. It's a requirement at work and
the people who we can't get to leave theirs' on are always the ones
who have issues. Also not good for the components to make
them heat up and cool down too much.

I used to turn off sleep mode as I saw too many problems with it,
but it seems to be better now, and I haven't turned it off since I
upgraded to windows 10.

Shutdowns are better than reboots though, and should be done
at least 1ce a week, preferably every day, though I tend to
leave my computer on especially if I was playing a game that takes
more than a few seconds to exit or load.

What? No one leaving theirs on to farm bitcoin? 8D

- Justisaur

DMP

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Jul 19, 2022, 6:31:21 AMJul 19
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on all day; off at night. I have never put any PC is sleep mode. I sign
out when the PC is not in use during the day and do a full shutdown at
night. My updates are "on hold" until I get SBradley's review of what's
good and what's not, so being off at night and missing updates is not an
issue for me. Never had a problem with any of my machines.

PW

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Jul 19, 2022, 6:55:52 PMJul 19
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On Mon, 18 Jul 2022 19:21:21 -0400, Spalls Hurgenson
<spallsh...@gmail.com> wrote:

*--

I have always shut mine down at night, unless I am downloading
something huge, and sometimes when I leave the house. Especially if
it is thunder and lightning...

Doesn't take long to boot up or shut down. Does that wear out the
parts shutting it down every day or something?

-pw

Spalls Hurgenson

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Jul 19, 2022, 7:26:41 PMJul 19
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On Tue, 19 Jul 2022 16:55:49 -0600, PW
<iamnotusing...@notinuse.com> wrote:

>I have always shut mine down at night, unless I am downloading
>something huge, and sometimes when I leave the house. Especially if
>it is thunder and lightning...
>
>Doesn't take long to boot up or shut down. Does that wear out the
>parts shutting it down every day or something?

One of the arguments for keeping it on is that there is an initial
surge of power / thermal expansion that - over time - would wear out a
PC's components more than if you just left the PC running. However
tests over the years have shown this to be either untrue or so
miniscule as to be unnoticable, especially given the average lifetime
of a PC.

(personally, I think the effects may have been more pronounced in the
late 90s/early 2000s when PCs were less efficient, back when it was
literally possible to cook your PC to death if it was improperly
cooled. But modern PCs are more robust... at least in this regard).

These days its more an issue of convenience (whether that is not
wanting to bother with shutting down, or the speed of boot-up, or
preferring to keep the PC on so it can run maintenance at night)
rather than worry about degrading the hardware. That, and ecological
concerns; your laptop might only draw 30 watts while its waiting for
you to come back, but add up all those million laptops and you got
some serious wastage.


Ant

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Jul 19, 2022, 7:48:14 PMJul 19
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I leave mine on since they still do stuff overnight! My monitors do
sleep though. I don't use hibernate too since I would get disconnected.
I rarely reboot and power off them too.
--
Slammy hotty Monday afternoon outside. Still tired and aching the day after.
Note: A fixed width font (Courier, Monospace, etc.) is required to see this signature correctly.
/\___/\ Ant(Dude) @ http://aqfl.net & http://antfarm.home.dhs.org.
/ /\ /\ \ Please nuke ANT if replying by e-mail.
| |o o| |
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( )

JAB

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Jul 20, 2022, 5:42:25 AMJul 20
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During the day I tend to just use the sleep function but recently with
the rise in energy prices I thought why not just switch it off
overnight. It certainly helps having a SSD as that keeps the boot time
down to ten maybe twenty seconds, I've never timed it.

My old set-up, well that was painful and it could be five minutes from a
cold start and even coming out of sleep mode there was a very noticeable
delay.

JAB

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Jul 20, 2022, 5:44:52 AMJul 20
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On 19/07/2022 02:52, Justisaur wrote:

> I used to turn off sleep mode as I saw too many problems with it,
> but it seems to be better now, and I haven't turned it off since I
> upgraded to windows 10.
>

Under Win 7 I did find sleep mode was a bit flaky. Win 10, very
occasionally it doesn't go into sleep mode but not enough for me to
think about not using it.

Zaghadka

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Jul 20, 2022, 1:22:58 PMJul 20
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On Mon, 18 Jul 2022 19:21:21 -0400, in comp.sys.ibm.pc.games.action,
Spalls Hurgenson wrote:

>CR&P: "Completely Random And Pointless". Just in case you were
>wondering. ;-)
>
>So... it's the end of the day. Time to stop working (or go to bed). Do
>you turn off your PC or leave it on?
>
>Much to my shame, I tend to fall into the latter category.

Me too. It's almost a complete shutdown sleep anyway. I don't bother
shutting down my PC any more.

--
Zag

No one ever said on their deathbed, 'Gee, I wish I had
spent more time alone with my computer.' ~Dan(i) Bunten

rms

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Jul 20, 2022, 6:42:27 PMJul 20
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>When I do shutdown, I always do a "full shutdown" rather than the

That's a neat trick, I'll try that sometime (hold Shift when choosing
shutdown in win10).
Mostly now I use Sleep mode at night, or if I'm leaving briefly I'll
physically turn off the monitor while leaving the system on.

rms

Ant

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Jul 20, 2022, 8:27:41 PMJul 20
to
I just use winkey+L hot keys to make my monitor automatically sleep
after a minute(default).
--

PW

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Jul 20, 2022, 11:38:29 PMJul 20
to
*--

Okay Spalls. It gets into the 80s here in my office so I turn it off
when I am not going to use it for a while. I also give it a good
cleaning every month.

But I do the same during the other months.

-pw

Spalls Hurgenson

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Jul 21, 2022, 10:32:46 AMJul 21
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On Wed, 20 Jul 2022 21:38:27 -0600, PW
<iamnotusing...@notinuse.com> wrote:
>Okay Spalls. It gets into the 80s here in my office so I turn it off
>when I am not going to use it for a while. I also give it a good
>cleaning every month.

Wow, a cleaning every month seems excessive unless you have a lot of
really long-hair cats or are working in a dust factory*.

Then again, who am I to judge; I give the PCs a clean-out once every
six months and even that is excessive. But there's something so
satisfying about squeaky-clean fan blades. That's not weird, is it?
;-P

Also, 80 degrees Fahrenheit (26 degrees real units) inside? That's
horrifying. I think I melt if it gets past 20 degrees (68 degrees
American).




----
* A dust factory?!?! Even I shake my head at that one

Spalls Hurgenson

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Jul 21, 2022, 10:38:12 AMJul 21
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On Wed, 20 Jul 2022 19:27:35 -0500, a...@zimage.comANT (Ant) wrote:
>rms <rsqui...@mooflashmoo.net> wrote:
>> >When I do shutdown, I always do a "full shutdown" rather than the

>I just use winkey+L hot keys to make my monitor automatically sleep
>after a minute(default).

<pedant>
No, you use Winkey+L to lock your computer... you just happen to have
your power configuration set to go to sleep after a minute after being
locked ;-)
</pedant>

I pretty much Win+L every time I get up from the PC. It's not even
that I have anything that sensitive on the computer; I've just had
experience with pranksters in years past and it's become so habitual I
use it even when its not necessary ;-)


Anssi Saari

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Jul 21, 2022, 5:32:37 PMJul 21
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Spalls Hurgenson <spallsh...@gmail.com> writes:

> CR&P: "Completely Random And Pointless". Just in case you were
> wondering. ;-)
>
> So... it's the end of the day. Time to stop working (or go to bed). Do
> you turn off your PC or leave it on?

Work laptop I usually hibernate or just leave, it goes to sleep on timer
but I have a little coffee-flavored program to keep it awake so
sometimes it stays on needlessly.

My main desktop I either suspend manually or if it's booted to Windows
it goes to sleep on timer anyways. This is new for me, came with my
recent re-installation of Windows 10.

Personal laptops, I use them like tablets or phones, put down when done
and let the power management do its thing.

My fileserver has delusions of grandeur and has no support for anything
other than on or off. Takes about two and a half minutes to boot too so
I try to take a minute of consideration before shutting it down. And of
course, server hardware so even when off the remote management stuff
runs full blast doing nothing and sucking power.

> But I'm really wondering if I should get into the habit of powering
> down more consistently at the end of each night. It's only a little
> thing when it comes to the environment, but it adds up if everyone
> does it...

I suppose. But it seems so little compared to the energy needed to heat
the house in the cold months. And in the cold months the extra energy
used actually goes into heating the house.

PW

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Jul 21, 2022, 11:28:13 PMJul 21
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*---

Summer is my least favorite season!

PW

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Jul 21, 2022, 11:36:35 PMJul 21
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>>
>on all day; off at night. I have never put any PC is sleep mode. I sign
>out when the PC is not in use during the day and do a full shutdown at
>night. My updates are "on hold" until I get SBradley's review of what's
>good and what's not, so being off at night and missing updates is not an
>issue for me. Never had a problem with any of my machines.

*--

I am afraid of sleep and hibernate modes. I have no idea what they do
and worry that I wouldn't be able to access my PC after that. I don't
even know if I have a password since I do not have to sign on.

But I do know my user name.

-pw

PW

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Jul 22, 2022, 12:09:10 AMJul 22
to
*--

Thankfully, we hardly have any humidity where I live. Sometimes when
after it rains.

Nothing like the crap I grew up with. In a couple of weeks I have to
go to the east coast and I am not looking forward to the heat or
humidity. I cannot handle humidity any more!!

-pw

JAB

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Jul 22, 2022, 3:57:42 AMJul 22
to
On 21/07/2022 22:32, Anssi Saari wrote:
> I suppose. But it seems so little compared to the energy needed to heat
> the house in the cold months. And in the cold months the extra energy
> used actually goes into heating the house.

There is a train of though that even doing simple things is a way of
nudging people in the right direction. A example is discouraging the use
of plastic bags in shops by charging for them and now in the UK you can
only get reusable ones. On its own it's not that much compared to
plastic usage in general but it may make you think are there all other
areas I can easily change what I do.


Justisaur

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Jul 22, 2022, 1:21:13 PMJul 22
to
Depends where you are and the humidity. I was once in Florida
and it was in the mid 80s but it was so humid I felt like I was going
to die. It's semi dry in CA where I am and it doesn't even really feel
very hot until it's in the 90s-100s unless there's a hot storm
which is exceedingly rare.

Unfortunately I don't sleep well if the temp is too high, my wife
likes it around 72-74 maybe, I'd prefer 68. Unfortunately the
AC went out last night and it was 77, I couldn't get to sleep
until about 3 hours past my usual. And it's going to be about
100 today. Fortunately it's only 28% humidity today.

Looking into it, it was recently discovered 88 at 100% humidity
for an extended period is about the lethal temperature for
humans. Comparatively one of the charts says it's about
113 for 28% humidity. So to my body it feels like it's about
25 degrees cooler than it did in Florida.

(Yeah I know, I'm a dirty Americcan who can't convert to C in
my head and not bothering to look up the conversions.)

- Justisaur

Spalls Hurgenson

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Jul 22, 2022, 3:30:38 PMJul 22
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On Thu, 21 Jul 2022 21:36:33 -0600, PW
<iamnotusing...@notinuse.com> wrote:

>I am afraid of sleep and hibernate modes. I have no idea what they do
>and worry that I wouldn't be able to access my PC after that. I don't
>even know if I have a password since I do not have to sign on.

Sleep is a low-power mode. Essentially, the OS says to all running
programs, "hold off on doing anything", and then it cranks down the
power usage so its barely doing more than keeping the RAM refreshed
and be alert enough so that if somebody pokes it, it'll wake up. Most
peripherals - hard-drives, monitors, etc. - get similarly snoozed. You
still need to provide power to the PC - don't yank the power cable or
eject the battery while the PC is sleeping! - but power usage is
dropped to 90% or so.

Hibernate has the PC save its running state to disk, and then it
powers off completely. When you turn the computer back on, it
initially boots as normal, but then instead of loading everything
afresh, it loads up its previous state from disk so that all the apps
you had running and any documnets you had open are returned to the
same state as they were when you hibernated, which nominally will save
you some time. When your PC is hibernating, it's totally off; pull the
battery/plug, it won't care. Most modern PCs are configured to
hibernate if you leave your PC in sleep mode long enough.

With Windows8+ (and assuming a modern PC), the computer will also
perform a quicker boot when coming out of hibernate than it normally
would, because it isn't running the usual diagnostics, etc at
pre-boot.

I have to admit, I'm not a fan of hibernate, preferring a full
shutdown instead, but that's more because I'm an old-school user who
remembers the problems that plagued these modes in their early days. A
lot of programs didn't play well with hibernate, and either didn't
save data correctly or got confused by the time jump. Plus, older
versions of Windows weren't exactly known for their robust memory
management, so it was usually better to boot-from-new every day rather
than return to a previous day's state. But assuming relatively new
hardware and software, you should be fine using hibernate nowadays.

But I still like a fresh boot... I get a kick out of seeing the BIOS
POST screen ;-)

Spalls Hurgenson

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Jul 22, 2022, 3:36:22 PMJul 22
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On Fri, 22 Jul 2022 00:32:34 +0300, Anssi Saari <a...@sci.fi> wrote:
>Spalls Hurgenson <spallsh...@gmail.com> writes:

>> But I'm really wondering if I should get into the habit of powering
>> down more consistently at the end of each night. It's only a little
>> thing when it comes to the environment, but it adds up if everyone
>> does it...

>I suppose. But it seems so little compared to the energy needed to heat
>the house in the cold months. And in the cold months the extra energy
>used actually goes into heating the house.

I admit, I sometimes use a PC for that. But it's actually a fairly
inefficient way of heating a home (not surprisingly, since a PC is
purposely designed /not/ to generate excess heat). You're much better
off buying an electric heater or - preferably - some sort of heat
pump; you'll get much more warmth and use much less electricity.

Still, there's something amusing about firing up one of my PCs and
having it run a "fireplace" screensaver that warms the room. ;-)



PW

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Jul 24, 2022, 5:09:12 PMJul 24
to
*---

Thanks Spalls. I am still going to stick with a full power down.

I read a couple years ago that BIOS wouls soon not be required to boot
up a PC and run one. I guess that went the way of a paperless
society.

I too like watching the BIOS screen starting up. Supposedly my ASUS
motherboard is a smart BIOS or something like that. That it what it
tells me each time I see it. If it is so smart, how come it keeps
telling me there is no keyboard attached? Still can't recognize USB
devices upon start!!

-pw

Spalls Hurgenson

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Jul 24, 2022, 7:23:46 PMJul 24
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On Sun, 24 Jul 2022 15:09:11 -0600, PW
<iamnotusing...@notinuse.com> wrote:

>I read a couple years ago that BIOS wouls soon not be required to boot
>up a PC and run one. I guess that went the way of a paperless
>society.

Yes, and no.

What is usually referred to as the BIOS - a (B)asic (I)nput / (O)utput
(S)ystem - was a type of software embedded into a computer's hardware
(in read-only memory) that - as the name suggests - allows some very
basic data controls; essentially, it is a set of very low-level and
simplistic keyboard and disk-drive controls (it may also offer some
limited hardware configuration options too). When the computer boots
up, it loads the BIOS which initializes the hard-drives, then loads a
program located at a very specific location on a disk that bootstraps
the rest of the operating system. Most modern operating systems then
take over all of the BIOS functions and handle the disks / keyboards /
etc. themselves from that point, since the BIOS is too slow and
unsophisticated to be relied on. While it has been modified over the
years, this code dates back to the earliest IBM/PC compatibles and is
extremely limited (it's 16-bit code, even!) and was becoming
increasingly difficult to add new features to this archiac program.

Because of these limitations, UEFI was introduced around 2010. UEFI
stands for the "Unified Extensible Firmware Interface", but at its
heart it's just a more advanced type of BIOS that runs at boot before
handing over control to the operating system. It usually boasts a
graphical interface, loads up faster, and has far better hardware
support.

Because of its limitations the old-school BIOS - sometimes referred to
as "legacy BIOS" - is pretty much a thing of the past; few modern
computer are sold with BIOS firmware and instead use UEFI. Windows 10
and 11 in fact expect a UEFI firmware, as they take advantage of its
Secure Boot feature (IIRC there's a way to bypass that requirement
with Win10). But ultimately, UEFI is arguably still a form of BIOS -
in fact, most provide a compatibility layer that emulates old-school
legacy BIOS calls so older operating systems can still run on the
hardware.

So, is BIOS dead? Yes, because there's been a fairly complete revamp
of the underlying firmware code when they created UEFI and most
computers don't use it anymore. But also no, because UEFI still does
most of what BIOS does (it just does more and does it better), and
still allows backward compatibility that emulates the legacy code.

>I too like watching the BIOS screen starting up. Supposedly my ASUS
>motherboard is a smart BIOS or something like that. That it what it
>tells me each time I see it. If it is so smart, how come it keeps
>telling me there is no keyboard attached? Still can't recognize USB
>devices upon start!!

This isn't an uncommon problem (although its not as common nowadays as
it used to be). The solution usually was to go into your BIOS (whether
its legacy or UEFI) toggle the option called "legacy USB devices".
That usually solved the problem.

Of course, if your PC isn't recognizing your keyboard, getting into
the BIOS may be something of a challenge, although some UEFI firmwares
allow you to use a mouse for that. YMMV.


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