NoSleepHD Keeps Your External HD Spinning

imageWe all have those “damn, that drives me crazy” moments with computing, I expect. My particular “damn, that drives me crazy” moment, repeated throughout the day, day in and day out is, waiting for the auxiliary Hard Drives (non-OS drives) on my system, to spin up.

Most Hard Drives feature a firmware auto spin down function, independent of the OS, that shuts down the drive after 10 minutes, or so, of inactivity. A primary Hard Drive, of course, can be controlled by adjusting power options in the OS’s advanced power settings menu. But, not auxiliary Hard Drives.

So, dealing with a repetitive non-responsive time lag of 3/5 seconds while my D, or E drive spins up – short though it may be – is annoying. Particularly, since I need to save my work periodically to drive D, or drive E – and, it’s generally outside the 10 minute spin down window.

I found a small (22 KB) free (open source) application, NoSleepHD, which I hoped might solve this annoyance. Despite the fact, that this small application is designed specifically to keep external Hard Drives from entering sleep mode, I gave it a try. Alas, it was a “no go”. So, I’m on the hunt for a freebie application which will solve the “damn, that drives me crazy” daily refrain.

Still, NoSleepHD is a simple, but nonetheless impressive little application, that writes a blank text file every few minutes (selectable 1 to 15) to an external Hard Drive (which effectively prevents the drive from entering sleep mode), which might come in handy for those who run with external Hard Drives.

Here’s a quick overview:

A simple GUI.


Click ‘Info’ tab to view drive information.

Monitor multiple drives by selecting, more drives in ‘Configuration’ tab. (Up to 5 External Hard Drives).

Hard drive monitoring can be stopped if necessary. (Which would allow the drive to go to auto-sleep).

Application can sit in the System Tray or simply minimized.

Auto-run at start-up can also be enabled.

System requirements: All versions of Windows.

Download at: Softpedia


Filed under downloads, Freeware, Open Source, Software, System Utilities

4 responses to “NoSleepHD Keeps Your External HD Spinning

  1. Giedrius Majauskas

    I think auxiliary Hard Drive OS-based cashing prevents NoSleep from working on them.
    Also, you can change the setting on hard drive itself if you boot from Linux CD and use hdparm command from it. This setting is stored in HDD itself and will survive reboots and even OS reinstalls.

  2. Leo

    Hello Bill,
    I, like you have several internal HDDs and that time lag gets real frustrating. Please continue to keep your eye open for a small freebie utility – I think the fix Geidrius has suggested is beyond my limited capabilities.
    Kind regards and we do appreciate your good work.

    • Hi Leo,

      Indeed I will continue the hunt for a freebie app to deal with the time lag irritant.

      I’m sure, there are those who consider this issue to be minor. But, having to deal with it 20/30/40 times a day, turns a minor irritant into a major pain in the a$$.