Is it safe to attach an HFS+ formatted drive to a Windows machine?

Discussion in 'macOS' started by bigwig, Jul 23, 2012.

  1. bigwig macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2005
    #1
    I need to run a Windows-only utility called CrystalDiskInfo, so I can disable APM on some external drives. I want to make sure that Windows 7 or 8 won't automatically format that drive or otherwise damage the data on it.
     
  2. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #2
    Let me repost something that you seem to have missed in your other thread: There is nothing bad about the APM features. I've known of hard drives that have spun non-stop for a few months and die and drives that spinup every 15 minutes to write a few megabytes of data and last for years at a time. It is common misconception that such activities cause harm to a hard drive's health, when the hard drive is actually made to do such things. In fact one could argue that having a drive spin non-stop is bad for the drive's longevity.
     
  3. Macman45 macrumors G5

    Macman45

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2011
    Location:
    Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
    #3
    Which is precisely why there is a tick box to "Put hard disks to sleep when possible" in the power options dialogue.
     
  4. bigwig thread starter macrumors 6502a

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2005
    #4
    Exactly. It should be under user control, not hidden in the drive firmware. I know for some drives manufacturers have made turning off APM impossible. And, naturally, the drive manufacturers are lazy and don't offer OSX-compatible software to configure the firmware.
     
  5. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #5
    Macman45's post is in support of my post's contents. If it was against it, he would have phrased it as a question asking why is the boxed still there if it does harm? In Mac OS X, internal drive obey that box because they are under the control of the internal Apple/Intell drive controllers. External drives are under the control of their casing's controller and may behave differently.

    The spin down part of APM setting is not hidden in the drive's firmware, nor is it stored in it. The spin down part is stored in the drive bus controller and is set by the host operating system. Some external drives override the host operating system's settings and default to their own. The only part of APM that is stored in the drive itself is the acoustics part of APM. Turning off that part will kill a drive after a few hours of use because the drive will rip itself apart.

    The drive manufactures have made disabling the setting of the spin down to benefit the end users. They have done extensive testing in laboratories and real world usage ranging across all types of drive use. They have built their drives to last and having them spin constantly is something that wears away at their lifespan quickly, as found out by their research. They could also not be called lazy for not making a spin down utility for Mac OS X, because so few of them have made any at all. Those that do exist are not manufacture approved and when they go mucking around in a drive or controller's firmware, they can cause the drive to stop working or deteriorate more quickly then before.
     

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