Is it safe to turn off ATV external drive when not in use?

Discussion in 'Apple TV and Home Theater' started by mathiasriffman, Feb 27, 2010.

  1. mathiasriffman macrumors newbie

    Feb 27, 2010
    I finally hacked my Apple TV today so I can use my external USB drive directly connected to the ATV. The drive is also set as my main storage, so iTunes recognizes that the Apple TV has a 1.5TB drive, and not the factory 40GB. My question is, is it safe to switch off the drive when Apple TV is not in use, or will it make things go "wacky"? I assume that if I unplug Apple TV then switching off the drive it will be fine, but if Apple TV is in stand by mode, is it or is it not okay to turn off the external hard drive? Thanks for your help in advance!
  2. wolgaa macrumors newbie

    Feb 28, 2010
    Shutting down Apple TV external hard drive

    I have installed "aTV Flash" software (that I like quite a bit) on my Apple TV & this activates the USB port to which I have a USB powered 320 GB hard drive attached.

    I have discovered that when in the Finder, if one holds down the "Play/pause" button for 6 to 8 or seconds, the Apple TV goes to sleep. It is still however consuming power because both the TV and the external drive remain quite warm.

    I then sprung for an Apple TV power cord from Radio Shack (about $9.00) and installed an inline power switch. I didn't use the original cord just in case I blew the switch installation.

    Now, after I sleep the Apple TV, I turn the power off, shutting down both the TV and the external drive.

    To summarise, I don't think that powering off your drive will be a problem.
  3. HardHatMack macrumors newbie

    May 6, 2008
    Hey, mathiasriffman - Just curious what method you used to enable USB access. I've read of a few different ways and am planning to do this myself. Any suggestions?
  4. hackthatphone, Mar 20, 2013
    Last edited: Mar 26, 2013

    hackthatphone macrumors 68000


    Jul 28, 2010
    This does nothing to properly park the heads on the external hard drive. I would imagine after so many cycles of just killing the power the external drive will give up the ghost.

    I'm also looking for something to do this.

    What I do is use the nitotv shutdown apple tv feature. I have the atv plugged into an extension cord with a switch ($5 almost anywhere no mods required) so I switch that off which is fine for the atv, but it's still just crashing the heads on the external.

    I still haven't found a method for telling the external to park the heads so it can also be shut down.

    I've been searching all over on this and can't find anything. I must just be paranoid about disk corruption. Somehow it just doesn't seem right to yank the usb cord out on a spinning drive, but everything I find says on power off the heads are stored safely once power is lost.

    EDIT ===================================

    Finally I've found my method of shutting down the internal, external drives and unit.

    [diskutil list] (poll the system to obtain drive numbers)
    [sudo diskutil unmountDisk /dev/disk1] (or whatever your drive is numbered)
    [sudo /sbin/shutdown -h now]

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