Safe to leave on all day?

0000757

macrumors 68040
Original poster
Dec 16, 2011
3,894
842
I like to remote connect to my computers from school because it makes it easy for me to transfer my files to and fro and whatnot, as well as use my own learning tools without having to transport my expensive 1200$ computer to school. I use a combination of Splashtop and TeamViewer. I have both set up so I can log in over the internet. Now, I come from a battery that had about 1hr 30mins on my old laptop BEFORE the battery started to short out, and I want to preserve this battery (7 hours, in my eyes, is an extremely long time for a laptop battery) to keep it as fresh for as long as possible. If I leave my computer on, plugged in every few days or so, will that kill my battery? Should I just sleep it/shut down like usual? I don't mean to sound like a n00b, but this is my 2nd laptop I've ever owned, and considering my last one wasn't the most powerful experience (I mean, I've jumped from a 1.9GHz AMD Turion and 2GB of DDR2 RAM to a 2.4GHz Core i5 and 4GB of DDR3 RAM; this is a huge speed bump for me) so I want to try to keep it running as fresh as my desktop computers have (Got a Dell from 05 and STILL kicking strong)
 

maflynn

Moderator
Staff member
May 3, 2009
65,431
31,474
Boston
I leave my MBP on all day and sometimes on all night. I've been doing that for years. I have not had too much problems with the longevity nor the battery. I think after 3 years with a laptop the battery's longevity is going to be shorter then when it was new anyways.
 

stridemat

Moderator
Staff member
Apr 2, 2008
11,179
592
UK
It should be fine. Just cycle the battery every now and again and the 'health' of the battery should remain.
 

BreakGuy

macrumors 6502a
Nov 23, 2009
818
0
NZ, South Pacific
I don't foresee any issues with that. Like others have said, just make sure that you use the battery from time to time to keep it alive and functioning correctly.
 

saberahul

macrumors 68040
Nov 6, 2008
3,616
88
USA
No, shouldn't be a problem. However, if you connect your MBP on LAN (assuming you are using a MBP - didn't read full post), you can use something like LogMeIn to wake you computer from sleep (enable WOL under Sys Pref). This way, you can turn on the computer through the internet socket when needed and put it back to sleep right away.
Note:
You must enable WOL
You must be connected to lan (ethernet cable - wifi won't work)
You must use an app that supports WOL (AFAIK, neither Splash nor TV support it but LMI does)
Your computer must be in sleep (or on); just not shut down
 

GGJstudios

macrumors Westmere
May 16, 2008
44,419
756
Mine is on 24/7 - when the battery meter goes red I plug it in!
You don't need to run the battery all the way down each time, unless there's no AC power available. Running on battery a few hours every few days is enough to put some cycles on it and keep it healthy. This should answer most, if not all, of your battery questions:
 

M5RahuL

macrumors 68030
Aug 1, 2009
2,692
982
Colorado
I haven't turned off my MBP since I bought it last week!! :D

Just make sure to run it off the charger every now and then.. like already mentioned!
 

that1guyy

macrumors 6502
Nov 11, 2011
454
19
Well this is good news. I hope this holds true for the 2012 mbps as well. *Imagines 5 day render times*
 

EEXOOO

macrumors regular
Aug 1, 2009
133
0
I'm currently having 34days 12:32 hours of uptime.
All the time it's connected to AC, never unplugged.
Still as quick as ever :D
 

aaron580

macrumors member
Apr 9, 2010
94
0
My 17" hasnt been shut off in over a year but just recently when I started having battery issues have i shut it off. Thats it.
 

Jake99

macrumors member
Jan 11, 2012
30
0
I had a friend who was a hardware engineer and his take was its actually better to turn these things off-and-on less.

The only moving part on a laptop that sits all day is the disk drive that spins (unless you have an SSD), and the fan. The longer this stuff spins, since its mechanical, it will have some wear. But both are designed for that.

Aside from this, the enemy of electronics is: dirt, heat, vibration, moisture, and unstable power. Keep it safe from that stuff when its on all the time, and you are good for max life. A surge protector is a good idea if you leave your MBP plugged in all the time, as there is more chance for a surge to hit it simply because its always plugged in.

Temp is a biggie, one of the things that causes "wear" to these electronic components, is all of the heating and cooling and heating and cooling from turning a laptop on and off. This causes some expansion and contraction of components...within tolerance, but over time will cause things to break down eventually. Some will tell you that turning it off and on less is actually better. But letting it get too hot will ruin stuff as well.

But I am assuming your Mac is going to sleep mode when you are not using it, so its not actually fully powered up all day anyway and the disk drive is powering down too in sleep mode. Unless you have the thing set up to never go to sleep in any way when its plugged in.

Anyway, with it "on" all the time, even if not sleeping, as long as you have it in a place where it can ventilate as intended so it does not overheat (for example, don't have it sitting on a pillow or other cushy surface that would block the fan from doing its part to vent heat) and its dry, not vibrating, and not in a dusty environment, you should be fine provided you cycle the battery as mentioned above. Some possibility of shortened life of the HD if its spinning constantly so I would at least set your power management to shut down the HD after a certain period of time if you have not already. I would also have the screen go to sleep, it does not need to be on when you are away.

Wow, the fact that I could actually write this much about this question proves what a geek I am. Do I belong here or what? ;-)
 

mscice

macrumors 6502
Aug 9, 2009
331
144
My runs 24/7 for past 4 years lol ... battery is dead basically ... needs replacing however my is plugged in 24/7...

Im surprised its still running and i do have the 8600GT video card...
 

svredhead2008

macrumors newbie
Jan 10, 2012
15
0
Hubert, NC
I run mine 24/7 and plug it in when I get down to 10% battery remaining and leave it plugged in until it's full, then I unplug it. I have only turned it off once since I have owned it. It still gives me HOURS of operation per single charge. Hope this helps. :apple:
 

therealseebs

macrumors 65816
Apr 14, 2010
1,057
307
I've tended to leave my MBP plugged in and running pretty much all the time, especially now that I have a Henge dock for it. Only problem I have is that sporadically the machine hangs until the firewire drive is unplugged, which is pretty annoying, and I have no idea how to fix it. But it's pretty rare -- every few weeks maybe.