Should I put my iMac to sleep overnight? Or shut it off?

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Hi I just purchased the 21.5 imac with an i5 processor and 4GB of RAM and so far there has been no problems at all! I was just wondering if at night I should put my imac to sleep or completely shut it off. I heard things about the switch from hot to cold when shutting off the computer could damage it and I was just wondering if this is true.

Thanks!
 

chscag

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Either way is OK. I shut my iMac off when inclement weather is in the area otherwise putting it into sleep mode is fine. I also use an UPS, which by the way is a good idea to preserve data in case of a power failure.
 
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So even if I leave my iMac on for about 50+ days it won't get sluggish or need to be shut down/restarted? So I should just put it to sleep?
 
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So even if I leave my iMac on for about 50+ days it won't get sluggish or need to be shut down/restarted? So I should just put it to sleep?

Apple recommend you only shut the machine down if it is going to be left unattended for any length of time. Just put it to sleep. Over the years I've never switched my machines off, except when instructed to do so (installing Apps etc) or when away from home.

In actual fact, regularly switching electronic equipment on and off can have an adverse effect on certain components, e.g. in the PSU thereby reducing it's effective life.
 
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I've always shut mine down each day and never had a problem. Replacing computers has always been due to software advances, not blown-out hardware components. YMMV
 

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Set the sleep timer to what you think is a reasonable time and allow the system to go to sleep after that time..I have mine set to 1 hour and in that manner I've been running my iMac for a year and half..I've probably rebooted/shutdown maybe a dozen times in that whole duration for OS upgrades or power-outages..

I usually go a good many months in between resets and don't notice any issues of sluggish or reduced performance..this is not Windows..:)
 
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I put mine to sleep at night or if away for a few hours, have a surge protector and shut down and disconnect the mains lead when lightning is forecast because nasties can track up your ring main circuits. Back in the late nineties I was booting up a PC when some utilities workmen cut the mains to our estate unexpectedly and the result was a cylinder head crash, a dead machine and no compensation. Viable cost option UPS's weren't around at the time so chscag has given me a timely reminder!
 
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So even if I leave my iMac on for about 50+ days it won't get sluggish or need to be shut down/restarted? So I should just put it to sleep?
Switched in the spring and I still can't believe how sweet it is to sign into my iMac in the morning. For years with my Windows PCs I would routinely shut them down at night because after three days or so of not turning them off they would start to misbehave. Waiting for the morning reboot was painful. All that's gone now, but I keep waiting for trouble that never comes. And if I do turn the iMac off, it simply reboots to where it left off last time (Lion). Sweet it is.
 
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So even if I leave my iMac on for about 50+ days it won't get sluggish or need to be shut down/restarted? So I should just put it to sleep?

I believe that the default sleep mode for desktops is 'hibernate mode 0' where the RAM is left powered on but the processor is supplied with low power. The display/audio/ports/wireless/bluetooth etc are all disabled.

Your iMac will effectively be in standby mode, with the ability to wake up with what you were working on still open at the time because it is still in the RAM. If you are going to leave it on for that length of time then you should really do some regular maintenance such as repairing disk permissions in the Disk Utility application and clearing your browser caches etc.
 
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Choice of UPS for iMac 27

Either way is OK. I shut my iMac off when inclement weather is in the area otherwise putting it into sleep mode is fine. I also use an UPS, which by the way is a good idea to preserve data in case of a power failure.

Hi,

We have rising power cuts due to copper cable theft here in UK. What UPS do you use, please?
Last week the power cut off when my iMac was backing up to a La Cie hard drive.


Does your UPS have a programmed shut down or does it merely shriek if the power goes off? In this bungalow I am often out of earshot.
 
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It's a misnomer that turning your computer off at night will wear it out. Turning it off will keep your computer cooler, is better for the environment, and will also save you money. I prefer a APC UPS's but any UPS is better than none as it will filter out the AC spikes which will harm your electronics. The common surge protector will not protect your computer from the same spikes, and a surge protector will generally only last a couple of years. Sure it will still pass electricity through it and it'll work like a normal extension cord, but it won't do any filtering after couple years because all of the MOV's inside of it which do the protection wear out overtime. A UPS is more costly but they're worth every penny, as they will offer you the best protection for your computer.
 
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i use an APC for both Hi-Fi and computer needs in my home as well as total home surge at the service been through a couple of storms.
 
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i use an APC for both Hi-Fi and computer needs in my home as well as total home surge at the service been through a couple of storms.

Actually get a local strike? I've seen UPS's that have been fused closed before they could react from a local strike (and I'm talkin' MUCH bigger units than you have at home).
 

chscag

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The "all home" surge protectors that are sold and installed by some electrical firms and licensed through power companies are only guarantied to sustain one lightning strike. After that, they must be changed out. The average person can't afford the type of surge and protection devices that are used commercially. Well, at least I can't.... :Smirk:
 

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I sleep my iMac and MBP every night - never have I shut it down just because I wasn't using it for a period. I always sleep it - it's one of the things I love about Mac OS X (except that now on the iMac it won't automatically get back online ever since moving to Lion - but that's another story).

Regarding storms - I'm like chscag - I shut the computer down and unplug it from the wall - that's the best I can do.
 
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Residing in a known lightning strike area in sub-tropical Down Under, always turn it off when not in use and unplug when storms forecasted. Have lost two modem/routers to lightning strikes on telephone poles up to 30 miles away.
 

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