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Fact or Fancy: You should always shut down your computer at night

Fact or Fancy: You should always shut down your computer at night

It’s one of the oldest questions, right up there with “What is the meaning of life?”, “Who gets the check?” and “Doctor who?”

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Of course, I’m talking about, “Should you shut down your computer at night?”

For decades, the debate has raged over whether you should leave your computer on every single second or give it regular rest. Both sides believe their way is better for a computer’s life.

The shut-it-down crowd believes that leaving it on and working will wear out components faster and shorten your computer’s life.

The leave-it-on crew believes that repeated shutdowns and startups will wear out components faster and shorten your computer’s life.

In other words, they’re worried about the same thing for completely opposite reasons.

So, who is right, and what does it mean for you?

Well, in the old days, it really was a bad idea to shut down your machine too often. Older hard drives and computer parts didn’t shut down easily and could damage themselves if they were turned on and off too much. That’s why tech experts said you should only shut down if you need to, like when updating software.

Things have changed since then, though. Computer parts today have no trouble lasting half a decade or more no matter what you do. Just keep the computer clean and you should be fine.

The exception is your hard drive. While modern drives are way sturdier than early models, they can still go at any time – although usually they either die right away or after three years.

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