PC hardware forum: Fact or fiction? Powering down a PC via the power button will harm it

by: Lee Koo (ADMIN) September 9, 2011 4:02 PM PDT

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Fact or fiction? Powering down a PC via the power button will harm it

by Lee Koo (ADMIN) ModeratorCNET staff - 9/9/11 4:02 PM

Question: Fact or fiction? Powering down a PC via the power button will harm it

For the record, I am not talking about holding the button down for
several seconds as would be done in the case of a hard shutdown. Only
a quick press and release--which (from my perspective) seems to send
the system through the exact same shutdown gymnastics as the "Start /
Shut Down" method. I have been using this method my entire life with
every single system I've owned (since 1998) and (to my knowledge) have
never done harm to the OS of any of my workstations.

I just had a $7,000 3D workstation built running Windows7 and the
builder told me never, ever shut it down using the power button
because it would eventually harm the OS. To which I said to myself,
"Yeah, right! I've been shutting off computers that way (Windows XP,
mind you) for the past 12-plus years without a single issue. What's the
big deal? Prove to me that this does harm."

But the more I read online, the more I see people supporting this
notion. Also, I've noticed that some people say it used to be an issue
with older computers. But today's systems are designed to be shut off
either via the power button or the old Start / Shut Down method.

So, for the record, please advise me on this. Is it safe to shut a
(Windows 7) PC down via the power switch as opposed to the standard
Start / Shut Down method?? Is that one of those rules that no longer
needs to be followed because of advancements in technology? For example,
it used to be necessary to pump a car's gas pedal one or two times before
turning the ignition to prime gas into the carburetor. But then came
the advent of electronic fuel injection, which meant you never again
had to worry about priming the fuel. Thanks.

--Submitted by: Michael B.

Here are some member answers to get you started, but
please read all the advice and suggestions that our
members have contributed to this question.

The action of the power switch is.... --Submitted by: Zorched
http://forums.cnet.com/7726-7591_102-5200646.html

Power Buttons Aren't Power Buttons --Submitted by: Droid
http://forums.cnet.com/7726-7591_102-5200736.html

Power button okay for shut down --Submitted by: bmbougie
http://forums.cnet.com/7726-7591_102-5200633.html

It's amazing how many people don't read --Submitted by: timhood
http://forums.cnet.com/7726-7591_102-5200690.html

Fiction - taking into account your clarifications --Submitted by: cfbosch_
http://forums.cnet.com/7726-7591_102-5200751.html

Thanks to all who contributed!

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