My secondary hard drive (Windows is running off of an SSD) started randomly turning itself off and on a few days ago.

I've played with the Windows power settings, the drive is set to never turn off. Changing the number has no effect on the problem

It seems to turn itself off after not being in use for <2 minutes, after which it will either turn itself again on at a random time, or when I access a file. It does not do this if I constantly am reading/writing (eg. playing a game).

I don't know if this is relevant, but a few days ago I ran a Linux ISO off a USB drive, however no data was accessed or written to the disk during this time. The problem seemed to appear the same day I did this, however.

The whole computer including the drive is only 1 year old. As mentioned, this problem does not occur if I'm continously accessing the drive. Is this a sign it is failing?

Drive: Seagate Desktop ST1000DM003

Motherboard: Tampa2

3 Answers 3


It is likely to be intended. When you don't use it for some time, it assumes that you will not use it and it will turn off to save power. It does need some time to start up on the next disk operation though. How to prevent hard drive from spinning down Windows 7? seems to have the answer to how to disable that.


You can go to Device Manager in Windows, right-click on the line of your HDD in the Storage section, and check Power Management there: maybe it's set to turn off to save power, and that's device-dependent. If so, uncheck the "Turn off to save power" box.

I think the following is happening: your HDD turns itself off to save power after x minutes of inactivity, but Windows wakes it up when it does, because it's mapped in Explorer, and must be accessible at any time you're using your computer.


Thanks for the answers. I solved this in an entirely different way after many hours spent. Seems the Linux ISO had something to do with it after all. I tried to use a different software (Rufus) to write the ISO and booted from the USB stick again. After then again going back to Windows, the problem disappeared as if it had never been there.

The absolutely only cause I can imagine is the other software overwriting something in the MBR, although I have no idea if that has anything to do with it. Nevertheless, something got messed up and booting from another ISO produced by a different software seemed to solve it.

Thanks for the help anyways

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