Put to sleep or shut down?

Started 5 months ago | Discussions
4x5joe Junior Member • Posts: 26
Put to sleep or shut down?

Hi folks.  Hope all of you are safe and well.

Just curious, I have a 2006 iMac that has only been turned off during family vacations or severe thunderstorms, granted it is to sleep whenever I am not using.  It is still running without problems as I type this.

I bought a 2019 iMac new last year when it was released.  Apple support suggested I turn it off whenever I am not using it.  I use my computers daily.  I use Adobe products on a daily basis for images... Lightroom and Photoshop.  Seems crazy to turn my iMac off every time I walk away from it compared to my 2006 iMac that I leave powered on all the time, just sleeping when not using.

Do you folks turn off your iMac when not in use or do you all just put it to sleep??

Thanks for your opinions,

Joe

Tom_N Forum Pro • Posts: 18,715
Re: Put to sleep or shut down?

My main Macs are a HDD-based iMac, and a SSD-based MacBook.  When I am not using the MacBook, I power it off.  When I am not using the iMac, I put it to sleep.

OP 4x5joe Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: Put to sleep or shut down?

Thank you Tom for your thoughts.

All three of my iMacs are HDD based, also all of my back up external drives.  I hope to get a SSD external soon.

Like I mentioned, my oldest iMac is 2006 and I rarely turn it off... always put to sleep and runs just like new.

The Apple customer support representative caught me off guard when she said to "always turn it off".

Thanks again.

JPAlbert Senior Member • Posts: 1,003
Re: Put to sleep or shut down?
2

Shut it down at night.

Boot up in the morning. Let it sleep during the day when you're not using it.

That's a good compromise...

lightandaprayer Senior Member • Posts: 4,166
Re: Put to sleep or shut down?

JPAlbert wrote:

Shut it down at night.

Boot up in the morning. Let it sleep during the day when you're not using it.

That's a good compromise...

It's what I do.  I've experienced problems if I don't turn-off or restart Macs at least every 2-3 days.  I've never understood people who feel it's necessary to leave a computer running 24/7. But I like to conserve electricity when I'm not actually using a powered device.

When I was a working photographer I would schedule my Macs to wake up shortly before I arrived for work.  Everything would be ready by the time I sat down at my desk:  my calendar front-and-center, email downloaded, the websites I visit first-thing waiting in tabs, CRT display warmed-up (in the early days LOL), RSS feeds updated, etc.  I'd be up and running just as quickly as leaving the Macs running all the time.

OP 4x5joe Junior Member • Posts: 26
Re: Put to sleep or shut down?

JPAlbert wrote:

Shut it down at night.

Boot up in the morning. Let it sleep during the day when you're not using it.

That's a good compromise...

Thank you JP. Your suggestion is a good compromise.

I worked in a place from 2000 to 2010 with around 50 Macs and servers running around the clock. I.T. always said to "just put them to sleep". lol. I suppose old habits die hard.

It's what I do. I've experienced problems if I don't turn-off or restart Macs at least every 2-3 days. I've never understood people who feel it's necessary to leave a computer running 24/7. But I like to conserve electricity when I'm not actually using a powered device.

When I was a working photographer I would schedule my Macs to wake up shortly before I arrived for work. Everything would be ready by the time I sat down at my desk: my calendar front-and-center, email downloaded, the websites I visit first-thing waiting in tabs, CRT display warmed-up (in the early days LOL), RSS feeds updated, etc. I'd be up and running just as quickly as leaving the Macs running all the time.

Thank you LAAP. Like you, my 2019 iMac experiences problems every few days or so if I don't restart. Much more often if I am on editing portraits for 6-7 hours a day. Sometimes I have to shut down all software and restart the computer three times a day if I have long Lightroom to Photoshop and back sessions. :-(. The spinning beach ball I hate when they show their ugly face.

I appreciate your input.

terrydev Regular Member • Posts: 352
Re: Put to sleep or shut down?

27" iMac and 15" MBP. Both SSDs. Only shut down if leaving the house overnight. Only restarted for system updates. Both machine frequently have uptimes in excess of 40 days. The iMac has 40gigs of Ram, the MBP has 8, which might be relevant.  Never had an issue.

MattPointZero
MattPointZero Senior Member • Posts: 1,523
Re: Put to sleep or shut down?

4x5joe wrote:

Hi folks. Hope all of you are safe and well.

Just curious, I have a 2006 iMac that has only been turned off during family vacations or severe thunderstorms, granted it is to sleep whenever I am not using. It is still running without problems as I type this.

I bought a 2019 iMac new last year when it was released. Apple support suggested I turn it off whenever I am not using it. I use my computers daily. I use Adobe products on a daily basis for images... Lightroom and Photoshop. Seems crazy to turn my iMac off every time I walk away from it compared to my 2006 iMac that I leave powered on all the time, just sleeping when not using.

Do you folks turn off your iMac when not in use or do you all just put it to sleep??

Thanks for your opinions,

Joe

My macs, all of them since 2010, only get turned fully off a few times a year for occasional glitches or maybe thunderstorms. 99% of the time they go into sleep when not being used.

ive never had any issues, and to be honest, until this question i’d never really thought about it! 😁

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MacOrneille Regular Member • Posts: 243
Re: Put to sleep or shut down?

If your Mac needs to restarted every few days, there's a hardware problem or software that has a memory leak.

My 2012 iMac has been up a fairly long time since last startup (and has often been up much longer than this):

$ uptime

19:39 up 68 days, 10:59, 2 users, load averages: 2.43 2.89 2.85

graybalanced Veteran Member • Posts: 6,917
Re: Put to sleep or shut down?
1

4x5joe wrote:

I bought a 2019 iMac new last year when it was released. Apple support suggested I turn it off whenever I am not using it.

It's kind of shocking that they said that. Apple of all people should know that macOS is based on Unix, which was designed for servers that rarely get turned off.

A properly running Mac should have no problem staying powered for months at a time. Some people say you have to restart it to clear out the RAM or some such, but from what I have seen, that's bunk. Sure, I've seen RAM use build over time, but if you wait enough days, the Mac does housekeeping and clears itself out.

My Mac laptop often goes a couple weeks between restarts. Sometimes I don't bother unless there's a system update. I leave it running if I am in the middle of projects involving multiple applications and windows open to specific pages or scroll positions in documents, or with tools in a certain state...I hate to throw all those workspaces out and have to rebuild them in the morning just because I shut down the machine. Would much rather just open my laptop lid and find every document in the exact state it was when I closed the lid last night. Also, it's much nicer to "instant on" from sleep rather than sit through the startup and login delays. Would much rather avoid shutting down.

The Mac can be set to "reopen all windows" on restart, but it doesn't do an exact restore of all document and tool states.

For desktops, it's different. It might be better to turn off a Mac desktop when not using it, unless it is plugged into a good voltage regulated UPS. Many of the replies above talk about thunderstorms, but our electronics are constantly exposed to damaging voltage surges and drops all day long. A running desktop Mac not on a UPS would at some point get a unexpected power cut.

If on a UPS, it is probably OK to leave a desktop Mac powered, and sleeping overnight, to take advantage of instant-on restoration of everything that was open from the last session. Under the protection of a UPS I have run a desktop Mac for over 10 months of continuous uptime, not kidding. It runs an older version of macOS that no longer gets updates that require a restart.

But, if you only work on one or two things at a time and don't mind starting them up every time, shutting down at night is fine. Either way, a desktop computer should be on a voltage regulated UPS to help the electronics last longer.

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