Turning off the PC before sleeping or leaving it on overnight has been a question you may have been debating with yourself; you may be thinking, frequent shutdowns and startups may have an impact on the computer components and wear them out faster. On the other hand, you may be thinking leaving them on overnight may also contribute to wear and tear as well.
So should you turn it off or keep it on overnight? Well, both approaches have their good and bad sides.
This has been one of the most long-running discussions in computing and the answer is simple; it all depends on how and how much you use the PC. Steven Leslie said, “It depends on how you use it, if you use your computer multiple times per day, it’s best to leave it on. If you use it for a short time- say an hour or two- just once a day, or even less, then turn it off”.
I personally leave my PC on because of convenience; it is always ready to go instead of waiting for it to boot. Leaving it on sleep and awakening it from sleep mode will take just take few seconds, and the best part is that all my previously launched apps will still be running.
Depending on your specification though, a typical system will take around 30 seconds to a minute to boot into the operating system. And if you have a large program to launch after the boot, it will take you another minute or two before you can get to work and that to me is too long a time.
I read with my PC, design with it and mostly write with it. So I practically use the PC throughout the day so turning it off and on will definitely wear of its component and delay me. I also use it most at times deep into the night and the first thing in the morning, so leaving it on sleep mode will do for me.
So it depends on how and how often you use your PC, the convenience you may want it to give you and dependent on your computer’s hardware, you can decide whether booting will be convenient or not. And if you use your computer frequently like I do, turning it on and off can shorten the computer’s lifespan.
Every single hardware component has a limited lifespan and leaving it on when it is not in use will also shorten its lifespan. “Some items have limited life cycle. For instance, if the (LCD) panel is left on all the time, it’s only specced for about 15, 000 hours or about 2 years. For this reason, it’s good to let the panel time out and turn off when not being used,” says Ajay Gupta, Director of Notebook Product Management and Commercial PCs.
Leaving it on will also put your PC under stress and can also generate heat, the biggest factor in reducing the life of your hardware.
To conclude, I would say there is no need turning your computer off and on several times a day when you use it frequently, just put it on sleep mode; this you do by just shutting the lid on a laptop that is being powered by the battery or through the operating system’s power menu. In a matter of seconds, you get your computer back from sleep when you want to use it and there is really little harm in leaving it on for as long as you may need it.
Power it down when you will go a few days without using it. The computer benefits from being rebooted from time to time so even if you are a frequent user, make sure you put it off from time to time.