Windows 10: Is that a built-in function on the HDD or Windows 10?

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  1.    06 Aug 2017 #1

    Is that a built-in function on the HDD or Windows 10?

    When My Passport Essential has been left idle for almost 20 minutes, the disk will stop rotating, and it will start rotating again when I read files on it.
    Is that a built-in function on the HDD or Windows 10?
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  2. Berton's Avatar
    Posts : 5,287
    Win10 Home and Pro, Win10 Insider Preview, WinXP Home Premium, Linux Mint
       06 Aug 2017 #2

    Both of mine do the same, a 750GB and 1TB models. I believe it's simply a power saving feature, not a problem for me as they do not contain an Operating System, don't need the same instant access as the OS.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    06 Aug 2017 #3

    Berton said: View Post
    I believe it's simply a power saving feature
    So do I, but is it a feature of Windows 10? I have not installed any drivers/software of the HDD.
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  4. Wiley Coyote's Avatar
    Posts : 853
    Windows 10 Home x64 Version 1803 (OS Build 17134.319)
       06 Aug 2017 #4

    Could be Windows is set to shut it down for Energy Savings. Check it's properties in Device Manager:

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    My WD Elements External Drive has it's own power supply so I don't have that issue.

    Good luck...
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  5.    06 Aug 2017 #5

    'Allow the computer to turn off this device to save power' is disabled at my end.
    I have never changed this setting before, so it must be the default.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    06 Aug 2017 #6

    This has been an OS feature for a long time. But some drives will power down independently of the OS, often with option to change the behavior.
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  7. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,604
    10 Home x64 (1803) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       06 Aug 2017 #7

    Matthew Wai said: View Post
    ... but is it a feature of Windows 10?
    Most likely a feature of the drive itself. I have a USB HDD plugged into the USB socket on my router so that it can be shared on the network. That too stops spinning when not in use.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

  8.    06 Aug 2017 #8

    You could try setting this:

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  9. Kari's Avatar
    Posts : 14,821
    Windows 10 Pro
       06 Aug 2017 #9

    Power Options > Edit Plan Settings > Change advanced power settings:

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    When enabled, external hard disks will disconnect when idle.
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  10. Bree's Avatar
    Posts : 8,604
    10 Home x64 (1803) (10 Pro on 2nd pc)
       06 Aug 2017 #10

    Some figures to demonstrate that an external USB HDD is quite capable of powering itself down while not being accessed without any help from a Windows OS. This is the S.M.A.R.T. info for a USB HDD that was plugged into my router (so no Windows system controlling it) 24 hours a day for well over two years. Compare the (09) Power-On Hours with the (DE) Loaded Hours. You will see that for 95% of its life it was in standby. Contrast that with my laptop's HDD, where the Loaded Hours are 82% of the Power-On Hours.

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    Oh, and the reason I replaced it? Well the Current Pending Sector Count is entirely due to my carelessness. I dropped it while it was spinning and the heads hit the platter with a loud 'ping'.
      My ComputersSystem Spec

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