Does Ubuntu Linux kill / shorten hard disk life?

Posted on in Categories Ask nixCraft, File system, Hardware, Linux, Linux laptop, Ubuntu Linux last updated November 18, 2007

I got lots of emails asking about Ubuntu Linux and hard disk issue. Does it really shorten hard disk life?


Unfortunately, some news and blogs reported news wrongly. Ubuntu doesn’t touch your hard drive power management settings by default. In almost all cases, it’s more likely to be your BIOS or the firmware on your hard drive (source).

Check out this official bug report for more information. On a related note, always consider backing up hard disk / data on regular basis.

Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. He has worked with global clients and in various industries, including IT, education, defense and space research, and the nonprofit sector. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+.

5 comment

  1. operating system does not damage the hd, but ext3 pretty much does.. less than ntfs though, but still… ever heard a hd click while using an ext3 partition? that’s what i’m talking about.

  2. Ubuntu DOES kill the hard drive because it doesn’t touch power management settings. Every other OS like windows, takes care of the user because they prevent the BIOS from using aggressive power management. Ubuntu needs to learn to take the blame for not realizing that laptop manufacturers use aggressive power management.

    Even if you don’t think Ubuntu should be blamed. You can’t argue the lack of power management under Ubuntu is what kills ubuntu.

    i.e Under Ubuntu, BIOS kills hard drive.
    under Windows, BIOS prevented from killing hard drive.

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