hdparm -S only active until PC is turned off

  • Anonymous - 2012-03-23


    I am using an external USB case (Pleiades USB/LAN) with the harddisk Samsung HD400LD (PATA) connected to a Linksys router WRT160NL, at the moment equipped with the original firmware.
    I want the harddisk to spin down/go into standby mode when there is no access.
    Unfortunately neither the USB case nor the router do this.

    So I tried hdparm. I attached the harddisk to my computer and the command hdparm -S 12 hdb (1 minute) worked.
    Sadly after a reboot respectively when plugged into the USB case again, the harddisk seems to have forgotten the command.

    Does "hdparm -S x hdy" only work until a reboot or a power off?

    Is there a possibility to save the standby parameter so that the harddisk will still go into standby mode after a power down and a restart?

    Thank you very much.

  • Ewano

    Ewano - 2012-04-06


    If I read this right, you have plugged in your external usb enclosure into your PC and issued "hdparm -S 12 hdb" which worked. Then unplugged the enclosure from your PC and attached it to your WRT160NL - where the settings were lost.

    From what I have read on the topic, this behaviour is is as I would expect under USB connection. hdparm applies changes to a drive which are lost when the drive loses power.

    If you are feeling brave you could investigate running something like DD-WRT on your router, specifically looking if hdparm is already or can be ported onto the device - then you can write a script which issues the command at startup.

    I would recommend going for something less aggressive than a minute once you have tested it. Something like hdparm -S 241 - to power down after say 30 minutes will reduce your stop start count if you are say streaming mp3's from the HDD where a song might last for 5 minutes before your network attached media playing device asks for more data - resulting in a lot of repeated restarts.

    However you may find that you can remove the drive from the enclosure and connect it direct to your PC where you may be able to use either samsung tools or hdparm (though I've not tested myself) to alter the drives behaviour and have the settings stored on the drive itself - and example of people having success with this can be found here:


    admittedly it's on a mac, and is a sata drive - but hopefully you'll get the gist of the idea.

    If your drive's APM settings can be permanently set then you may not need hdparm to run on your router at boot time to set up the device.

    Hope this helps you..


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