Is there a way for me to see if my hard drive is actually spinning or in sleep mode under Windows 7?
I am looking for answers for both internal and external hard drives; they don't always have a light to indicate their status.
It's an inelegant solution, but try installing the windows version of hdparm. Then run
The drive name is a UNIX style device address which is mapped somehow to a Windows drive letter/physical device (
It would be nice if there was a graphical and/or native-windows utility to get at this functionality, but I don't know of one.
It's still UNIX-ish, but you could also try playing around with the Windows version of smartmontools, and see if it offers similar functionality in a more usable package. I don't have any experience with that software, though.
You could run DiskMon which would show all activity on each drive in your system. No entries would suggest that the disk is in sleep mode.
Limited testing here confirms that this would appear to be the case anyway. When trying to access a drive that isn't being listed in the current transactions, there is a delay before the drive shows up in the DiskMon window indicating that it has been spun down.
It's a bit crude I admit!
You could use a PowerShell script to get the status of disk drives for which this information is available (not all drives give back this status).
Try this in a Windows PowerShell console (probably run as administrator) :
The interesting values for availability can be found here :
If Win32_DiskDrive does not work for you, other possibilities are Win32_LogicalDisk and Win32_Volume.
If any one of them works, you could also create a script, for example :