Correctly switch off external hard drive?

  numskull 10:48 14 Feb 2005

I have an external hard drive, USB 2 connection.
What is the correct way to switch this off?
Do I simply shut down the computer then push the power button on the External drive or should I use "Safely remove hardware"?
Operating system is XP Pro.


  chaztait 11:30 14 Feb 2005

Well i click Safley Remove Hardware when disconnecting Flash Drive, Ipod, Camera ect and if there is a light on the Drive that lights yup when connected when you safley remove it the light should go off then just simply unplug it.

  Diemmess 12:17 14 Feb 2005

Either way is valid........... The safety reminder can be unnecessary if the USB disk is not in use - just better safe than sorry. (Win98SE) has no such error flag anyway!

  Southernboy 12:18 14 Feb 2005

and have an external Maxtor.

If you use the safely remove hardware option, the drive letter disappears. Sometimes it reappears with a different drive letter which can be a problem.

Therefore, I simply shut down and switch off at the power point, which turms the Maxtor off. When I switch on next time, the Maxtor automatically powers up.

Have I been doing something wrong?

  Storik 12:35 14 Feb 2005

Having just bought an Iomega desktop and a Maxtor One Touch drive, I found your question interesting.

The Iomega seems to keep running when connected to the power supply, despite the computer being switched off - which, like you, worried me. I have been pressing the switch on the drive, before disconnecting from the mains.

I have found the Maxtor switches itself off when the computer is shut down. I still turn off the switch on the drive, before disconnecting from the mains.

Thanks for the question which brought up the reassuring answers.


  lmhillyard 15:34 14 Feb 2005

I have an Iomega external drive and have not had a problem.I just turn off the power supply after shutting down the PC.

  Southernboy 17:46 14 Feb 2005

Because the Maxtor has a separate power supply, shutting down the PC does not shut it down. It simply goes into "sleep mode" after 5 minutes - I have it set to do this. I then unplug to PC and the Maxtor goes off. By switching off the power to the surge protector (to which all my PC hardware is connected) the Maxtor goes off.

I also have a 750 Iomega Zip drive, which ejects the disc when the PC shuts down but, of course, is still switched albeit inactive.

I read the manual very carefully, but could not find any reference to switching off the Maxtor before unplugging the PC. Have I missed something?

  numskull 14:05 17 Feb 2005

I have just discovered that if you click on "device manager" then "disk drives" in the policies tab you have two choices.

Optimize for quick removal.
Optimize for performance.

It seems that if you choose the 2nd option you have to use the "Safely remove hardware icon"

  Southernboy 14:29 17 Feb 2005

but do you have to switch off the Maxtor before unplugging from the mains or not?

Does simply unplugging damage the Maxtor?

  freaky 15:44 17 Feb 2005

I switch off my Maxtor One Touch by just using the On/Off switch situated at the rear of the case, I do this when the Pc is running.

I also switch it on at any time as well. Has not cause any problems during the 10 months I have owned it!!

  woodchip 15:49 17 Feb 2005

Other than Safely remove, it does not work for me every time. XP or Win98se I then leave it, and reboot and pull the plug

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