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effect of sudden electricity cut on laptop without battery?

by AM_SOS / January 15, 2009 3:02 AM PST

A simple question- if the laptop switches off in an improper way while downloading stuff ( e.g. when it is suddenly switched off while running directly on AC power ), does this harm the hard drive in a serious way?
I ask this because i have not been using the laptop battery at times. However, due to one reason or the other, the electricity supply has got cut many times when large files (movies etc) are being downloaded.
though i have not observed any problems with the downloaded data, i am equally worried about my hardware !
please clarify

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Desktop Issue as well.
by Renegade Knight / January 15, 2009 3:46 AM PST

Desktops have been having this issue for years. If it's a concern use a surge protector with battery backup, same as you would for a desktop.

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but what about the hard drive?
by AM_SOS / January 18, 2009 12:31 AM PST
In reply to: Desktop Issue as well.

hey sorry for not being clear. if one is NOT using a battery at all and running the laptop directly on AC power, and the electricity gets cut, does this harm the hard drive in any serious way?
or is there some mechanism within the hard drive that ensures that the hard drive gets parked properly?
i have a toshiba A 200 laptop.

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Define "harm."
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 18, 2009 12:57 AM PST

The issue of data corruption is well known so let's dismiss that from the definition of harm. Excluding that, the power going out will not kill a drive.

The question about parking is model specific. You must research the make, model of the hard disk and what they publish about it. There is no blanket statement you can make here but parking is an issue that was solved decades ago. Do you have a 20 year old drive?

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The biggest problem with that is corupt data
by orlbuckeye / January 18, 2009 1:27 AM PST
In reply to: Define "harm."

rather then complete hardware failure. That's why when using Flash drives it's reccommmended use the Safely remove hardware icon in your taskbar. It makes sure all files are closed when you remove the device.

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how to check for corruption?
by AM_SOS / January 19, 2009 2:45 AM PST

by "harm" i specifically have the longevity of the hard drive in mind. i.e. does repeated improper haulting of the drive (such as would happen in case the laptop is run without battery and the AC power gets cut suddenly) lead to a significant reduction in its service life?

since i am a beginner i do not have much knowledge about data corruption. in the cases that i have mentioned about my hard drive stopping suddenly, i have been in the middle of downloading large files (to the tune of several hundred MB's). so how do i check if they are corrupted or ok?

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Tell me about improper halting.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / January 19, 2009 4:07 AM PST

I'm at a loss for words here since we used hard disks in an embedded DVR system and NEVER did any document claim you could harm the drive by turning off the power. Sure you can corrupt a sector but that's not harm and would not reduce the drive life span.

Tell me what document you read that from. The documents I used were PDFs and data sheets from the drive maker's themselves. I'd like to know about this harm. Who and where did that come from?


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