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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection? Site News
Discussing this hint with Rob yesterday, I asked him if he really left his Internet connection, and a Mac, on when he's on vacation, or even overnight? I feel that this is a huge waste of electricity, hence a cause of pollution. I turn my router and DSL box off every night before I go to bed; I don't need it on at night, and it would be a waste of money to leave it on.

Initial reactions to this poll suggest that I'm in a minority, but we need more opinions to have a valid sample. For those who don't turn these devices off, do you think about the power you waste, both in terms of cost of electricity and pollution? Do you turn off other devices that suck up power on stand-by? (I turn off my TV, satellite box and hard disk recorder as well.)

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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: imageworx on Oct 04, '07 07:56:20AM

You might add to the question "Aside from the occasional Powercycling for reset", ...How often Do You...

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To BeOS or Not to BeOS



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: interlard on Oct 04, '07 08:05:07AM

I record a radio show off the internet overnight and my TiVo downloads schedule & OS updates. The internet connection stays on all the time (cable modem & router) and the iMac stays on weekdays, when I record the radio show. Other nights & when I'm out I sleep it.

I'm a bit of a green nut, so I think about energy use all the time. I have energy efficient light bulbs all over the place and try to only use what I need. I don't have a car and I turn most things off as much as I can, so I thought I was doing quite well. Should I try to use less? I'd like to get some feedback.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: markuswarren on Oct 04, '07 08:33:11AM

I agree about adding an option with regards to power-cycling the router.

I leave my router and computer on 24/7. I may be downloading/uploading data whilst I sleep, thus not slowing the connection/machine when I'm actually using it. It also helps when I'm away from home as I can remote in to my machine, there's always that one, critical, file that you forget to put on the laptop :D



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: michelle_eris on Oct 04, '07 08:56:04AM

I leave mine on all the time; routers and modems do not use much electricity, nor does the computer while resting, especially with the monitor sleeping.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: corsa on Oct 04, '07 09:02:48AM

My Internet connection and iMac are also on 24/7.

Sometimes it is uploading or downloading data, and when I am away, I need remote access to my machine for work reasons.

Also, since OS X is Unix-based, I like to keep it running 24/7 so it does all those nightly/weekly/monthly crons that Unix systems do to keep themselves maintained. Also, I have automated backup scripts that run each night to back data up to external hard drives and to do remote backups for critical data.

I do have the screen set to sleep after 5 minutes, and have all my external hard drives set to spin down when not in use.

Strange thing to: I did this from 1990 to 1999 with my Commodore Amiga 3000; from 1999 to 2005 with my PowerMac G4; and from 2005 to present with my iMac G5, and I've never had a single hardware failure (apart from a floppy drive on the Amiga), hard drive failure, and I've never had to reinstall the OS on any machine. I often wonder if constant powering on and off shortens the life of hardware/hard drives, and not allowing the nightly maintenace to always run on OS's gets those out of whack too.

As far as lights and other things go, I am very adament about shutting off lights, turning off items like the TV or stereo when not in use, etc. It is basically just the computer and Internet that goes 24/7.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: lar3ry on Oct 04, '07 09:54:16AM
Constant turning on and off raises havoc with ncandescent bulbs and other analog devices, so you have a point there.

However, unless you are powering down your computers with the hard disks spinning, hitting the "off" button does little to affect your hard disks' life because modern design allows them to spin down for Energy Saver reasons (that icon means a LOT for government purchases). In addition, most modern power supplies will absorb any momentary surge that the initial "power on" will put on, unlike the light bulbs previously mentioned.

I, myself, keep my machines powered on for a few reasons:

  • I schedule many maintenance scripts to happen between 2am and 6am, when I'm not likely to be online.
  • I never power down the internet connection, because every time I recycle the cable box, there is a chance that it will be renumbered. I have three domains that I host, not all of them automatically reassign to the new IP address.
  • Biggest reason: I have web pages being served 24/7 that are accessed from all around the world. (And yes, one of the web sites I host is that popular...)


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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: umijin on Oct 04, '07 09:09:45AM

I think it's a great hint. We are all wasteful, and most of us (me included) don't need to leave our tech on all the time when we aren't around. Besides, it just invites hackers to dig into your wireless systems.

Sure, if you are hosting a site or have an ftp server - I can understand.

The other night, I noticed after turning the room lights on - all these freaking LEDs glowing in the family room. First there is the Wii, then there are my JBL Creatures, then the hard drive plugged into my Airport Extreme. Then there's both my Airport Extreme and Express, plus cable box. That doesn't even include all the other appliances on 'standby' in my home office.

Sure, the LED lights themselves don't use much energy - but often the devices they are attached to do draw quite a bit of power.

I suppose someone might argue that they are worried if they turn off all their net stuff (cable modem, router, wireless), it will be a pain to restart them all and get them to sync up correctly. But I suspect this is not the real reason. Most of us are just lazy and wasteful - a sad byproduct of our consumer culture.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: webdog on Oct 04, '07 09:11:36AM
In all likelihood, the "standby" mode on your VCR uses far more power than your router or cable modem.

In a survey of my home appliances an electronic gear with a Kill a Watt (http://www.smarthome.com/9034.html?src=WG1000413), I found that the worst abusers were my stereo and my VCR/DVD player, both of which used as much power "off" as they did on (go figure). Putting the computer to sleep brought it down to almost nothing, and the router and cable modem used less power on 24/7 than any incandescent lamp in my home (which are now almost all CFL's).

Add to that the problem of routers and modems losing settings randomly when cycled, and it just seems like it's worth it to pay < $1 a month for the convenience. Want to seriously save money on your electricty? Stop using your AC and upgrade your fridge.

I'd be more interested to know if people leave on their ink-jet printers, which usually require a cleaning cycle ever time they are turned on.

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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: tyip on Oct 04, '07 01:21:52PM

The stereo/TV/DVD player uses the same power in standby probably to give you instant on. People nowadays don't tolerate a time lag after they turn on their TV or stereo.



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RE: Stop using your AC (especially when it's cool outside)
Authored by: lullabud on Oct 04, '07 09:20:10PM

Dude, this seriously pisses me off. ALL OF MY NEIGHBORS use AC all damn summer, even when it's cool and fresh outside. I used mine like 3 times because honestly I didn't need to use it after about 7pm. What was the real source of irritation is that their AC units were turning on and off all damn night, waking me up with that godawful buzzing, when we all could've been enjoying the ambient sounds of whatever happens to be out there...

...and idiots walking their kick-dogs at 2am, but... well that's another gripe about my neighbors.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: AdamQP on Oct 04, '07 09:16:20AM

It has an off button?



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: fotostuf on Oct 04, '07 09:17:17AM

Since I bought my house, first I ever had, I wanted to keep track of utility expenses.
If anything, I've been able to lower my electric bills each year, even though I have added computers, internet, router, etc., so I'm not sure how any of this affects my electricity use.
It can't possibly be much if my KWH has gone down, not up, with these additions.
Anyone know how much a computer in standby uses? A router? Airport Extreme?



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: teece on Oct 04, '07 09:23:35AM

"I'm in a minority, but we need more opinions to have a valid sample."

To have a valid sample, you need a random selection, which you don't have, no matter the size of your sample. Sorry.

I don't turn my router off at night.



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Poll: How Often.. I Used the light switch going to the basement office.
Authored by: jon.pdx on Oct 04, '07 09:42:29AM

Hello everyone,

When I setup our dsl connection, the manual for the cisco modem noted that the most secure state was, of course, when the device was turned off.

So that caused me to hook it up to the light going down to office. That way at the end of the day or during vacation the dsl connection was off just because people would turn out the lights on their way out.

In terms of power consumption, I left the router on all the time. In general we do turn most electronic appliances off. My guess is that with each generation of energy star goals, turning appliances off will matter less and less.

-jon



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: dmmorse on Oct 04, '07 09:44:09AM

I have VoIP, so turning my router off overnight also means I cannot receive phone calls. Because of this, I leave my router on 24/7.



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Dang. Forgot about the VoIP
Authored by: hamarkus on Oct 04, '07 10:25:59AM

Thanks for reminding me, I was just about to turn of my modem this night. I had completely forgotten that I also use VoIP.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: wallybear on Oct 04, '07 10:20:20AM

I power off the Mac, but my router has to be powered 24/7, as my phone line is pure VOIP.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: baltwo on Oct 04, '07 10:28:26AM
I feel that this is a huge waste of electricity, hence a cause of pollution. I turn my router and DSL box off every night before I go to bed; I don't need it on at night, and it would be a waste of money to leave it on.
Define huge waste. It's not a waste, if it provides always available service. Have you performed a cost-benefit analysis between cycling on and off versus leaving on or is this just a feel-good comment? BTW, feeling and knowing are two different things.

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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: kirkmc on Oct 04, '07 10:47:40AM

Well, I live in France, and one of the consumer mags did a story this month about how much electricity routers use. Many of them - the ones provided by ISPs to give ADSL, phone and TV - use as much electricity as a refrigerator. That's not a huge waste? Regardless of the cost, the pollution alone, multiplied by the millions of people who leave them on, is, in my opinion, a huge waste.

Kirk

---
Read my blog: Kirkville -- http://www.mcelhearn.com
Musings, Opinion and Miscellanea, on Macs, iPods and more



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: jspivack on Oct 05, '07 05:13:19AM
Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: jspivack on Oct 05, '07 05:14:39AM

150-250W - and the high figure was for a box that includes a hard drive.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: adrianm on Oct 04, '07 10:40:45AM

I leave mine on because assorted machines do stuff and then periodically backup offsite.

I also occasionally have a server running on one of my machines and need to access it from the interweb.

Of all my machines at home though, I usually put them to sleep/shut them down, unless they are actively doing something (like being a PVR).

I save the planet by not driving a car.

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~/.sig: not found



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: MtnBiker on Oct 04, '07 10:49:21AM

I leave it on, but it's the WiFi for our two PowerBooks and networked printer. Not terribly convenient to run down stairs and turn on the router to check email. Oddly the Verizon supplied router doesn't have the energy usage printed on the device (ActionTec).

Homes use about half of the energy in the US. The most important step one can take to reduce consumption is to seal and insulate the house to stop using energy to heat or cool air that then leaks out. Next are probably refrigerators and large screen TVs. CFLs help a lot though.

But my iMac and all the associated plug-ins (almost those plug warts are warm whether the device is being used or not), and second monitor can warm the room noticably. I'm planning to get a device that will shut off all the unneeded devices when the iMac is off or maybe even when asleep.

---
Hermosa Beach, CA USA



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: fnordianslip on Oct 04, '07 10:59:39AM

I suppose that if you turn your 'puter off, then there's not much point leaving the rest of the bits on. However, I've got too many machines doing their own thing to deny them network access.

I rarely turn off my main Linux desktop anymore. It had been on 24/7 for about 18 months when I did turn it off. A bunch of electrolytic caps on the motherboard let loose with their smelly pink goop when I next applied power.

So, beware. Electronic kit can get addicted to power and can overdose after doing a spell of cold turkey.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: Stephen Macklin on Oct 04, '07 11:09:52AM

Never. They are physically in too inconvenient a spot to keep turning them on and off.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: luomat on Oct 04, '07 11:14:17AM

I have a satellite internet connection (which is awful, but better than dialup).

Whenever it powers on it can take up to 15 minutes before it seems to get an IP, so I leave it on unless I know that I am going to be away for several days.



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Every Night, But Also...
Authored by: PGB on Oct 04, '07 11:59:36AM

I sleep the computer every night and shut off the modem and router. Mostly to save the power. But also...this may be just superstition on my part, but I like the fact that I have a new IP address every day. (The theory being that if someone has discovered some vunerability at my current IP address, they won't find me there tomorrow.)



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A little pretentious
Authored by: Lectrick on Oct 04, '07 12:12:49PM

"I feel that this is a huge waste of electricity, hence a cause of pollution."

Am I the only one who is a little offended by this blanket insinuation that I am wasteful and uncaring? First of all, not all of us just use our internet connection to surf the Web, read email and/or play the occasional game. For some of us it is becoming like a utility secondary only to electric power itself. I have a desktop and laptop hooked up to my router and I (as a gaming, music-loving, P2P'ing web developer) often connect to my home machines from elsewhere. Not to mention the Vonage, Skype, all-night downloads of streaming Protonradio etc., or uploads of new mixes to friends, hosting web work for demoing, etc. etc. that I do.

Plus, I have ALL energy-efficient bulbs in my place (that is, 100%), I shut off all lights or A/C when not in use (energy-efficient hi-tech thermostat for scheduling), and I bike EIGHT MILES TO WORK (and back) whenever the weather cooperates.

I even made inquiries to my condo building and town as to whether I could install a Skystream on the roof that would supplement my electric power with wind power. Unfortunately, they declined due to the apparent noise issue (it's not really meant for populated areas apparently... yet), but not before I spent hours researching the feasibility.

SO... I am just a little bit offended at the holier-than-thou tone of outrage.

One good thing to come of this forum is that I will be purchasing the Kill A Watt device. I didn't even know that existed!

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In /dev/null, no one can hear you scream



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A little pretentious
Authored by: frgough on Oct 04, '07 12:25:06PM

These things no longer offend me; I've come to expect them from people who make decisions based on emotion and propaganda.

I leave my internet connection on at night and without any pangs of guilt at destroying the planet because I know human beings are incapable of any such act. Those who whine about pollution have never been to a Communist block country.

The days of the Potomac catching fire are over. The problem has been fixed. Unfortunately, there's no power or money in that, so you will be told forever that the next apocalypse is around the corner, and that you must give power and money to the wise and benevolent who are so much better than you and will save you from yourselves. It's the loving mother tyrant shtick and it works remarkably well.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: 5chm31din6 on Oct 04, '07 12:13:21PM

24/7 baby!

I work from home and have a server for clients to download and/or proof work I do for them. Who knows when they will decide to pay a virtual visit?

If I was a "regular" user I would probably leave it on all the time anyway. They draw such little power compared to the fridge, et-cetera, that it's just a drop in the bucket anyway.

But there are other items that use the same relative amount of power in my home that I do turn off at night.

---
Power corrupts. PowerPoint corrupts absolutely.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: happyjaxx on Oct 04, '07 12:19:10PM

As for a few others, my ADSL connection serves various services besides "The Web"... VoIP (totally unbundled line, ADSL only on the wire, so no tone at all)... and TV (Actually recording a show on the PVR while watching another using integrated the DVB tuner)...

I would have added another option to the poll, like "ADSL-dependant Telephone service, so I've gotta keep it on...".

Cheers :-)

JaXX,
ISP: Free in France, unbundled and uncapped ADSL2+ synced at 24Megs ;-)



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: kirkmc on Oct 04, '07 01:12:18PM

I have VoIP via Orange in France, and turn mine off at night. No one's going to call during the night, and if they do I have voice mail.

Kirk

---
Read my blog: Kirkville -- http://www.mcelhearn.com
Musings, Opinion and Miscellanea, on Macs, iPods and more



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: tyip on Oct 04, '07 04:37:53PM

NORMALLY, no one calls you at night. But when someone actually does call, it's usually not normal and you'd probably want to take the call. This is one reason for having 24/7 phone service, in case someone calls you with an emergency.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: jrcarroll on Oct 04, '07 12:55:57PM

We share our wireless connection with our upstairs neighbors, and so leave it on all the time so as not to inconvenience them. However, the computers and all peripherals are turned off at night.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: msackett on Oct 04, '07 01:00:42PM

Never. But to be fair, if I didn't turn it on for a year, it would save enough energy to keep Air Force One aloft for less than two seconds.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: interlard on Oct 04, '07 01:47:08PM

Your argument holds water only if you are the only person on Earth. If 5 billion of us get off our fat asses and make an effort we save a lot. Might even save the planet. I think it's worth a try.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: logo on Oct 04, '07 01:26:32PM

I do always leave it on, as I use VoIP for my phone. However I will shut the system down whenever I'm on vacation. Besides this I turn WLAN on/off on demand. This to save at least some energy and reduce unnecessary radiation.
I do agree that the system eats energy, but an ISDN phone system will do this too.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: dandyrandy on Oct 04, '07 01:28:18PM

Computers are all off overnight, butI leave the router and cable modem on, as I have a Roku Soundbridge at my bedside and I listen to various Internet audio streams that way.

But when I leave the house I turn the power at the switchbox off on everything but the refrigerator and the smoke alarms. Saves a TON of money on electricity! (switchbox is easily accessed in my interior hallway).



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: pub3abn on Oct 04, '07 02:22:47PM

But if you have AC, is it really better? I've heard that powering off and on AC every day uses more energy than leaving it on. I can understand about the other appliances and gadgets, though.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: tyip on Oct 04, '07 01:32:31PM

Has anyone done any measurements on how much power routers and internet connections use? And how much power it used for powering up? I cannot believe the article you quoted saying these things use as much power as a fridge. What kind of router are they using?



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: rollomooro on Oct 04, '07 02:50:45PM
I seriously doubt that a router comes anywhere near to a fridge in terms of power draw (at least a regular router; I don't know what kind of devices where used for the magazine article he mentioned). A quick googling brought up this regarding routers' use of electricity.

I use a Linksys router myself (similar to the one in the linked article above) with a server/desktop machine behind it that I can wake up remotely via Wake-on-LAN. Thus only the router and (alas) my DSL modem need to stay on 24/7, while the computer, which I estimate draws some 100-150 watts when active, is powered off for a great majority of the time. I recommend this solution for anyone looking to balance energy conservation with nearly-instant availability of a home server.

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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: pub3abn on Oct 04, '07 02:20:07PM

If you are really energy conscious, why not install solar cells? Even if you do not make enough energy to run your house, you could at least offset the trickle of power drawn by always-on devices. If I wasn't renting, I'd do it.

Personally I put my desktop computer in stand-by mode overnight (almost off), and my laptop in sleep mode. But I do see little LEDs all over the room, telling me that this and that are still on. If I weren't so pressed for time, I'd probably take the time to power everything down and turn off the UPS, which I am sure is the biggest power eater in my electronics setup. Problem is, not only does it take a while to boot up and shut down a home network of two computers, but there are these various applications that have to start on each restart, and it's really annoying to wait for it all. Often when I am forced to restart my computer, I leave the room and go do something else, it is so tiring to wait through the process.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: macdsl on Oct 04, '07 02:37:00PM

It's not "Do you turn it off to reset it" it's "Do you turn it off?"

Once in a while to reset means a choice of never....



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: howiedi2 on Oct 04, '07 03:38:47PM

That's ridculous to think that turning off devices in your home will pollute less. If you want to pollute less then, demand that the energy producers use less polluting sources for energy. Otherwise, your meager contribution isn't having any effect whatsoever.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: sys0p on Oct 04, '07 04:36:49PM

I agree, even more to discuss that on a router when your US 1m^3 fridge from the 1980 eats 100 times more or the Subway has aircondition on full blast all the time (in NY) or another 1000 reasons - but honestly, the router ... I think I am dreaming ...



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: SpiceLMF on Oct 04, '07 09:58:52PM

Let me preface this by saying, I absolutely hate air conditioners. I've never had one in my house while growing up and while I have one in my dorm, I almost never use it. Put on shorts and open a window is my philosophy.

Now, in fairness for the subway being air conditioned, I imagine that may be a health concern, if that's the correct way to describe it. I take the Subway to class on a daily basis and even I, young and fairly fit, have felt myself feel short of breath waiting on the train platform in the heat. I'd imagine there are a lot of people young and old who for health or age reasons have trouble with that extreme level of heat. It would be great if there was a way to promote the airflow underground without cranking the AC.

In my opinion, the subway isn't the worst of it. It's the tons and tons of buildings in NY which crank the AC to the extent that it is frigid. In one of my classes in particular I have to wear a jacket even when it's 80 degrees outside because inside it is so cold. That is just ridiculous and unnecessary.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: webdog on Oct 05, '07 08:12:24AM

I think you missed the point. Since most of our electricity comes from burning coal, the less we have to produce, the better. It's not like you turning off a light at night is going to get noticed by the power company, but 300,000 people turning off a light will.

What does irk me is my power company issuing a "stage 3 alert" and asking everyone to turn off appliances, AC, and computers in order to avoid rolling blackouts. It's not like they are going to give me a break on my electric bill for not being able to use my gear or do my job (I work at home on my computer). If they can charge me a $4 "convenience" fee to pay my bill online, I should be able to hit them with a respective "inconvenience fee".



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: rumirocks on Oct 04, '07 04:40:10PM

When I worked as a consultant at Bell Labs in NJ, I noticed the engineers on the project left the computers on all night but put the displays to sleep without turning them off. This was really high-end experimental equipment, and the technical scopes, etc.

I asked them about burning out the equipment and the waste of electricity. They said two things.

(1) The surge of turning the equipment on and off every day was what damaged equipment. Like a car battery spark. The surge hit the electronics with 250W - 500W depending on the item, no matter what the low wattage to run it said. This level is maintained until the equipment was fully operative. They told me it was the fastest way to destroy your equipment. And I was ordered not to turn the equipment off, ever, since i worked on some of the equipment when they weren't there.

(2) They said it was more economical to leave the computers/equipment on. I didn't believe it, and they took out their calculators and showed me with a complex formula that measured two years worth of electricity.

I am not an electrical engineer. But some of these guys were. The rest were various hardware engineers. They told me no pro would turn his equipment off every night unless he lived in a tornado area without an APS surge protector.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: rumirocks on Oct 04, '07 05:00:19PM

Oh, and there was one more thing: the fans ran harder at startup than leaving the machine on all the time.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: Toki-chan on Oct 04, '07 05:02:12PM

The problem is that I would be the only one to do it and I'm not home most of the time, and when I am, it's in constant use. My parents use it from 6 am on and I use it till 3-6 am. I mean I wish I could turn it off, but I"m at college most of the year. Also at the college Wifi, we use it 24 hours, even it's not even in the dorm (we hijack from the other buildings) I mean it's in use most of the time. I feel that's there is just nothing that can be done, so I'm not going to feel to bad about it.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: blubbernaut on Oct 04, '07 05:37:26PM

I'm with you Kirk... I used to be Mr Convenience and couldn't stand it that "the olds" turned everything off at the wall. But the more I see, the more I think that I have an absolute social imperative to do everything I can (especially when that only is such a tiny inconvenience to my quality of life - which lets face it is astronomically better than a majority of the world's population).

My other worry is I don't really need more EM fields throughout my house when I'm sleeping!! (I know some people will say they do no harm and the Earth has a very strong EM field - but frankly I don't want to risk it any more than I already do)



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: ChiefTypist on Oct 04, '07 07:05:35PM

I have a server in the garage that does offsite backups all night. So, yeah, I leave it turned on.

-ch



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: Peganthyrus on Oct 04, '07 08:39:06PM
It was hard enough just getting my Windows-using boyfriends to set their monitors to sleep. And they like media, so there's usually a download going. Which means their computers stay on.

I can't even get them to turn off the kitchen light when they go to bed, ferchrissake. And yet one of them is neurotic about energy efficiency and insisted on replacing every bulb in the house with fluorescents. He can replace the incandescent in my studio with a fluorescent when they come in a pleasing spectrum, and when he starts putting his wind tunnel of a PC to sleep at night.

That mini-rant aside, I've always left the router on. It just sits there in the corner doing its thing and requires no interaction unless something's gone awry, just the way I like it.

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Rarely
Authored by: lullabud on Oct 04, '07 09:16:15PM

I only turn off my gear when I feel the need to unplug myself from the grid completely. This happens only a few times a year, I'd guess.

One reason I leave my gear on at night, including my cable modem, router and G5, is that I serve up stuff over apache that my friends access whenever they want. It's infrequent, but I consider it worth enough to me to leave it on.

As for vacation, the above applies as well as SSH/VNC and Mail rules for sorting things out (spam, moving things to various folders, etc.) This mail issue would be a non-issue if there was a mail standard other than exchange that allowed server-side filtering, but that's just the tip of a huge iceberg regarding broken mail standards and archaic functionality.



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Not often
Authored by: Scripter12 on Oct 04, '07 10:31:33PM

We do turn everything off when we travel. When we are home there are few hours where someone is not awake and possibly using the internet.

I recently did stop using an old router and replaced it with an Airport Extreme. I had been using that just for wireless and now it is the main router. Having one less bit of kit in the chain reduces our power use.

Using less power is a good thing to consider. I could get a timer to turn off the cable modem and Airport Extreme between 2:00AM and 6:00AM everyday.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: Felix on Oct 05, '07 12:25:44AM

>>As far as lights and other things go, I am very adamant about shutting off lights, turning off items like the TV or stereo when not in use, etc.

Same here...although I do unplug all desktop computers (3), printers (3), AirPort Extreme (2), AirPort Express (4), DSL modem, TVs (4), TV recorders (2), Blu-Ray player, HD-DVD player and other ancillary electronics when we'll be away for a few days...not so much for the relatively small energy savings but for protection from electrical surges from nearby lightening strikes during the thunderstorm season.

Yes, I do have surge protectors and UPS units on the expensive stuff but I still feel better just unplugging them if we'll be away for awhile (defined as a couple days or more). Must admit though, I don't do it for the energy savings, rather for the electrical surge and/or brownout protection during the "season."

It's always a hassle getting everything turned back on when we return so I don't go through that routine on a frequent basis.

The energy savings from the vacation setting on my set-back thermostat on the AC, furnace and hot water heater far exceeds what little is saved by unplugging the electronic equipment in sleep mode. I concentrate on the stuff which saves me some serious bucks in a 4000 SF house.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: smilec on Oct 05, '07 01:49:45AM

I leave it constantly turned on, since I do not have a fixed phone line but rely on VoIP. Turning the router off would cut my phone line.



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I'd be more likely to turn my water off!
Authored by: Mac Berry on Oct 05, '07 05:22:52AM

With 5 computers, 3 printers, 4 network storage devices, 1 PDA, an Iliad, an Apple TV and 2 Airport Expresses on the network, with backups, syncing and scheduled or long downloads happening automatically (mostly while I'm in bed so they don't get in the way), with the need to check e-mail in a hurry as I fly into and out of the house, and with the four family members all having different and varying schedules, there's no way under the sun my router or cable modem (which is also my set top box - therefore needing to be on lots anyway, even if we're not using the internet) are ever going to be turned off.

However, only two of the five computers stay on constantly:

One is my MacBook Pro, which obviously goes off to leave the house.

Two are my daughter's Windows boxes (to be replaced with Macs as soon as I can find an excuse, such as "they're broken"!) which they turn on and off as they need them.

The fourth is an iMac which acts as the "family computer" (people hop onto it for a few minutes whenever they need to look something up), syncs with my MacBook, runs EyeTV to record stuff while we're in bed and export it to the Apple TV, replaces the TV we had in the kitchen before, has all our photo's, videos and music on a Firewire disk, in turn serving that up to all the other computers, the Apple TV, and the Airport Expresses. That one never goes off, but is set to turn the screen off after 15 mins.

The fifth is an old Windows laptop with a broken screen, which acts as a server for running Windows only business apps over Remote Desktop, either over the LAN or while I'm out over VPN. It also downloads concert recordings for me from a fan hub, which often can take all night, serves those up to others on the hub, and has one of the network drives connected to it. That one stays on!



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: Mr.Crispy on Oct 05, '07 06:06:38AM

Considering I use a VOIP phone, no internet = no phone service. My cable modem and router are on 24 hours a day. Besides, the small amount of power they use is barely noticeable compared to the other things that have to run in my house.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: purplehays on Oct 05, '07 06:30:53AM

I've got two TiVO boxes - they update over my wireless network *AT NIGHT* - why would I want that extra network traffic during the day?

And, I find large downloads work best at night.

---
"Discipline is never an end in itself, only a means to an end." - King Crimson



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: mcdan333 on Oct 05, '07 06:44:58AM

Wow, busy thread. Ignoring the sanctimonious tone of the original post...

I run a Windows XP server at home, and just discovered the wonders of "Wake-on-LAN". The server goes into standby mode automatically when idle. If I need to use it remotely, it only takes a few seconds to come out of standby and start responding to my network request.

I don't know how to configure a Mac server for WOL, but for XP it was pretty simple.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: dan55304 on Oct 05, '07 06:55:48AM

Now this is just plain silly. To save pennies you waste all that human effort dealing with starting, stopping, and configuration issues. What a waste of human potential. Remember the old saying, "penny wise and pound foolish"? So, do still fetch your water from a well?



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: NicholasSegura on Oct 05, '07 09:02:02AM

I thought about this as I was setting up my home office. During the day, I can sometimes hear the whir of my external hard drive which is plugged into my router. This sound has made me conscience of how much energy it is using. Therefore I have plugged all of my devices into on of those powersticks that can handle 6 or so devices and before I go to bed at night I simply turn off the switch. The monitor, router, printer, external hard drive, speakers all go off at once. I save money, then environment, and don't waste unutilized electricity. Granted there are people who need there computers to be on all the time, but I would bet that there are MORE people who could simply turn everything off with the flick of a switch. I wouldn't leave my water running all night, even though I get it for free!? It's 2007 world! If you can avoid being wasteful, be conscience and help us all out.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: Morwen on Oct 05, '07 10:29:26AM

Never turn any of that stuff off. I just don't have central air or window a/c units and I keep the heat turned down to just above freezing in winter to make up for it. You gotta have your priorities. :D



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: jhaffner on Oct 05, '07 10:48:50AM

I never reboot my DSL modem unless the connection is hosed. I shut down my home mac every night.

At work, I just log out because it's hard to have your machine backed up by Retrospect when it's off. ;-)



---
Don't worry, it's out of control.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: ObbieZ on Oct 05, '07 12:19:02PM

I appreciate the desire to cut power consumption, but there are much Bigger Fish to Fry (so to speak). If you live in a 4000 sq-ft house, downsizing the house would save a lifetime worth of stand-by power. Same for commuting by car. Replacing a crt screen with a flat-screen does a lot, too. As for me, I haven't owned a car in four years, we live in an 800 sq-ft house within a mile of everything we need, and we don't use a/c. We keep the dsl modem and router running, because it's too much of a pita for the amount of power saved (and we often have downloads running overnight). We do have a "storm drill" for whenever lightning is in the area... all sensitive electronics are disconnected from power and phone lines until the storm passes. We also do the storm drill whenever we leave for more than a day or two.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: transeau on Oct 05, '07 01:36:12PM

My DSL Modem, SonicWALL, SonicPoint, and AirPort N are always powered on, except for vacations / trips lasting longer than 2 days.

My DirecTiVo and ReadyNAS are also always up and running. My servers (3 of them in a data center) are rsync'd nightly to my ReadyNAS, so I MUST leave my internet connection up.

As for my Mac's, they all stayed powered on 24/7 unless on vacation / trips lasting longer than 2 days. However, they are all set to sleep in an hour of idle time.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: transeau on Oct 05, '07 01:38:29PM

Oh yeah, as for heating / cooling.... We use ceiling fans most of the year, using the heater / AC only when the temps hit the ranges that are not comfortable for my 3 year old.



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Thinking about the power....
Authored by: transeau on Oct 05, '07 02:04:38PM

Personally, I do think about the power wasted.

My wife and I have taken several steps to do what we can to help out. Most of them are very simple. We have Compact florescent lights in all of the lamps and fixtures in the house, except those on dimmers. In the winter we heat the house to 68 NOT 75 like most.. In the summer we use ceiling fans as much as possible, only running the A/C when it gets above 85 inside, and then we cool it down to 78, NOT 75 like most. Also, we have double paned glass windows, and our heater is gas.

For the electronics in the house; Mac's are put to sleep when idle, ReadyNAS's hard drives are put to sleep after 10 minutes. Printers are powered off until needed. LCD's are powered off at night.

The hard part... My network closet...
12 Port Gigabit switch
SonicWALL TZ170e
SonicPoint A/G
AirPort N
Westel DSL Modem
Vonage VOIP TA
QOS scheduler

It's quite a bit of hardware in there. Once I had everything installed, I realized that the power draw of 370W was unacceptable. My solution was a modified APC SmartUPS. What I did was a modification the output system. The UPS takes AC in converts it to DC then back to AC. When the power goes out the batteries kick in and it's just DC to AC. I started thinking that there is no reason to have the A/C. All of my network hardware runs on 12v DC. The DC side of the UPS is 12v. and a CLEAN 12v at that. So, I built a breakout box for the DC and now all of my network hardware is powered directly by the UPS. my power draw went from 370W to 85w.

I don't think people realize just how inefficient most of those power bricks are. Here is a quick test. Touch one. If it's hot, it's wasting power. A high quality power brick should only draw as much power as is needed by the device that it's powering.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: laragoite on Oct 05, '07 02:29:49PM

I run BOINC, with SETI@Home, Folding@home, and others, so my computer is doing things even if I'm not there. I'm a strong proponent of the distributed computing concept. There are many important problems that can be solved this way if you just throw them at enough computing power.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: stilabel2 on Oct 08, '07 07:21:45AM

I turn off the computer but leave the router and modem on as we use vonage as our primary phone service through our cable provider. At work we power down all non-essential equipment except the cpu as our IT dept. pushes updates and downloads after normal working hours.

---
Michael E. Abell



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: 01 on Oct 08, '07 07:54:34AM

Never on the model (I use my desktop as a d/l box and to run the modem, pretty much everything else I do is on my laptop) I do, however, turn off the power switch to my TV/wii/DVD/stereo every night. It's easy to do and with the amount of power big TVS pull down, even in stand-by, well....



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: osxpounder on Oct 08, '07 03:17:27PM

I was in the UK and Ireland during this "ruckus", Kirk, but reading your "Goodbye For Now" blog post convinced me to re-examine whether I really need my Mac, router, or cable modem to be on around the clock. What really convinced me was not a sense of responsibility to my neighbors, but the thought that I might save a few bucks on my power bill.

I used to set an old Mac to come on every day just before I got home from work, just in case I needed it, and because, for several days out of the week, it was set to record radio shows via my radioSHARK. Since the Mac only offered wakeups on Every Day or Weekdays, but not, say, only on Monday and Thursday, that was the only way to be sure it was up and running to record the shows.

Why did I stop? Ran out of storage. I have more copies of those shows than I'll ever find time to listen to, and they'll keep me happy for a few years.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: metafeather on Oct 17, '07 07:47:55AM
Don't guess - find out:

http://www.diykyoto.com/wattson.html

"Wattson shows you how much electricity your home is using at any given moment.

Wattson can also store up to 4 weeks of energy-use history which can be downloaded to your computer and viewed using software."

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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: xhints_ on Feb 10, '08 05:14:50PM

I try to keep everything off as much as possible EXCEPT my Mac.
I have adopted a policy for >2 days idle = deep sleep, shut down weekly, shut down holiday, sleep the rest of the time.
Shutting down still shortens the life of computers and consider this: does any energy saved by shutting down compensate for the energy used in the production of your prematurely-replaced computer?
Also note that startup is the most power-hungry time for your computer, apart from very resource-intensive tasks. Sleeping for 12 hours is (for a Mac Mini - less than 3W!) much more energy-efficient than shutting down and starting up 12 hours later.

The sort of thing that REALLY annoys me is when people put our CRT TV on standby. It takes as long to power up from standby as from power off, the only advantage being that you don't have to walk three feet to push the button.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: zo219 on Feb 11, '08 03:42:00AM

Do you know what it's like to cajole an Airport Express into acknowledging the presence of my machines and send me some cable bandwidth?

It's a long time with a paperclip, is what it is. Or you never would have asked such a silly question.

The MacBook Pro goes off every night, after a little maintenance. What, you leave your portable on? For shame. You do no maintenance? For big shame.



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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: alanf on Aug 06, '08 06:37:32PM
I was curious about household power usage so I bought a UPM electronic energy meter www.upm-products.com at Canadian Tire. Here is some interesting things I found out.
My neighbours power bar uses 13 watts all by itself.
Annualized this costs $5.69 (Canadian @ .05 KWH) (365 x .013 x 24 x .05)
One of mine uses 7 watts.
Annualized this costs $3.06
Not sure why but possibly it could have something to do with the surge circuitry ???? because all of my other power bars have lights on them and use no measurable watts.
My iMac 24 uses from 61 to 83 W. It jumps all over the place and I have no idea why. Certainly nothing obvious is happening. I started 8 different programs and the watts used went up about 5 watts. While programs are started up it goes up briefly about 15 20 watts. On startup it spikes up to about 90 watts. My programs are the run of the mill ones and the Microsoft suite.
Interestingly when a program crashed the consumption did not change.
The Belkin wireless router uses 1 to 2 watts and my Wimax modem uses about the same.
When the computer is asleep it uses about 1 to 3 watts so @2 watts this would annualize at $ 0.87 . Throw in the router and modem and it doubles to $1.74 so cost is not really an issue.
Probably in the winter the added heat is useful in the house but not in the summer.
One thing is that wireless routers concern some people due to RF floating around to the point that I heard that in France they are not legal in public places. Not sure if that's true.....
My conclusion to this entirely unscientific but interesting examination is that I am going to leave it on except maybe doing electrical storms and when I go away on trips. The reason is that I wish to take care of it because it uses more electricity to make a new one or replace parts in the current [oops : ) ] computer. I drive my car only when absolutely necessary choosing instead to hoof it or cycle.
However my girlfriend says that the Apple dealer told here to turn off her MacBook daily. A laptop is a different deal due to the battery. I suspect that the heat may affect the laptop's life or the battery life...... , due to the cramped quarters in it's case. Not sure, does anyone know?

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Poll: How Often Do You Turn Off the Power to Your Internet Connection?
Authored by: alanf on Aug 06, '08 06:42:21PM

I checked out the Wattson website and it only works in places that have 220/450 volts.
In Canada / US we have 110/220 volts.
Too bad.



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