MsGeek.Org v2.0

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Thursday, August 12, 2004

I have been vindicated! Yes!

Read this, all you "keep the 'puter always on" partisans. The article basically says that the "powercycling" argument about keeping computers on is no longer as true as it used to be, and what's more keeping a computer powered on, even in sleep mode, wastes megawatts of electricity.

I always keep my computers powered down when not in use. I was always scolded by geeky friends about this. However, let me tell you two stories from the Northridge Earthquake.

One friend had a crappy Packard Hell 386sx. It was turned off when the quake hit. This friend lived about 2 miles from the epicenter of the Northridge Quake.

The other ran a BBS, and had several computers up and running during the Northridge quake.

The first friend's 386sx flew off the table it was sitting on and landed on the floor. Basically everyone thought it was a goner. Just for grins, after the power came on and stabilized, he set the computer back up and plugged everything in. It booted up flawlessly, and lasted for another couple of years. Remember, this was a Packard Hell hunk 'o junk computer. Dude has great computer karma.

The second friend lost half his hard drives in the quake. And remember, this was 1994, not 2004. Hard drives were nasty expensive then and didn't store a hell of a lot. The BBS was kept up and running, although reconstruction was a bitch.

Basically the take-home message is this: a powered down computer is less vulnerable in an earthquake. Living in California, this *is* a consideration.

There is also another good reason to keep your 'puter powered down when not in use, particularly with an "always on" connection. A powered-down computer can't be h4x0r3d. That's three good reasons, counting the one in the article I referenced. Now turn your damn computer off! Thank you and goodnight.