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(Posting on behalf of a friend who has this problem.)

I have got a 500 GB Maxtor Basics Desktop USB external hard drive, and I have one annoying issue with it. It goes to sleep mode way too early and it has a very slow spin-up when returning from sleep mode.

I have not really timed it, but I think it enters sleep mode after about 10-20 minutes of inactivity. When Windows needed to access the disk, it would take about 10 seconds to spin up -- and that would halt other things (like Windows Explorer) in the process. Even when I am not using the Maxtor, sometimes Windows still needs to poll the disk (such as when an Open File dialog starts listing files at My Computer which would also probe the external disk), and this slow-down from the Maxtor halts everything until it finishes spinning up.

I have tried to find a way to change the configuration of the Maxtor drive, but I could not find any. I have not found any utility for Maxtor Basics Desktop external hard drive either.

Do you have any idea how I can remedy this -- like setting time to sleep to some longer time, or a way to shorten the spin-up time? Thank you very much.

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up vote 1 down vote accepted

I found a way to change the sleep timer to a longer time, up to 5 hours, or never at all. Check out Maxtor OneTouch 4 Lite software. Although it's supposed to be used for Maxtor OneTouch, it does recognize Maxtor Basics and can change its sleep timer as well.

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As far as I know there is no way to change this. I have a 250GB external drive that does the same thing.

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There is no way to speed up the drive spinup, but you can write a script that polls the hard drive every 5 minutes. It's not a pretty solution, but it will prevent the drive from spinning down. This will shorten the life of the drive and increase your power consumption.

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