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View Full Version : [other] Is it safe to stack or use hard drives upside down?



RealG187
April 21st, 2009, 05:28 AM
I have lots of USB hard drives and sometimes when I plug in two I will sit one on top of the other. Is it safe to do this? Would the magnetic fields from one USB hard drive mess up the ohter?

Also sometimes It's easier to connect a hard drive if you put it upside down (if there are two cords, one for power and one for data, then if one cord is longer or something it may be easier to connect if the hard drive is upside down). Is this safe. I am assuming so because there are heads on both side of the platter so no matter which way you have a hard drive half of the heads are gonna be upside down. WHat about if the hard drive is vertical?

Greyed
April 21st, 2009, 05:30 AM
As long as the drive is parallel or perpendicular to the ground you're fine. Even if it isn't I think the orientation of a hard drive ceased to be a major issue a decade or so ago.

pbpersson
April 21st, 2009, 05:40 AM
I know very little about external hard drives - however when stacking any electronic devices one on top of the other, think about airflow and proper cooling.

RealG187
April 21st, 2009, 06:14 AM
Not like it's really possible (well I guess if you made something to hold the drive) but what about if the drive was diagnal (having something hold the drive diagnally is pointless and stupid).

It must be safe because inside computer internal hard drives in a bay are on top of each other.

If I would stack them I thing they would ventalate through the sides.

Greyed
April 21st, 2009, 05:13 PM
Not like it's really possible (well I guess if you made something to hold the drive) but what about if the drive was diagnal (having something hold the drive diagnally is pointless and stupid).

This used to ruin drives. Of course that was back in the day when you had to manually park your drive heads before shutting down the computer lest that ruin the platter. The problem is that the hard drive is spinning several thousand times a minute; a couple of times a second. At those speeds having one edge of the drive angled down and the other up causes stress from gravity. That stress would shorten the life of the drive.

In theory that is still an issue today. Basic physics. But I think that the issue is largely considered non-relevant now since there were, for a time, MP3 players build around mini hard drives. Those were held at any angle and jostled all the time. Being mounted at an angle is trivial compared to those stresses.