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KeepAliveHD: Prevent External Drives From Going Into Auto Sleep Mode

Some external hard drives go into sleep mode after a period of inactivity (which is usually 10 minutes). While this option can be prevented by going to Advanced Power Options in Windows and disabling the hard disk sleep feature, a better alternative can be to customize the sleep mechanism of an external drive. For instance, one can use an application to toggle the auto-sleep mode On or Off according to specified criteria.

KeepAliveHD is a portable application that writes a small text file after every user-defined amount of time to your external hard drive(s) in order to prevent it from going into auto-sleep mode. The developer was inspired by another open source tool called NoSleepHD. KeepAliveHD working is similar to NoSleepHD, with the additional option to disable the sleep prevention feature after, lets say, 1 minute or 1 hour of user inactivity. KeepAliveHD supports different data writing time for each added hard drive. It includes an information tab for connected drives and system tray minimize option. You can add multiple drives for managing their auto-sleep modes separately.

To begin, click Add Drive from main interface, select an external drive, specify the time after which the data is to be written to the drive (for preventing auto sleep) and then click Accept.

Drive Settings

You can prevent multiple drives from going into sleep mode by adding them to KeepAliveHD. From the Configuration tab, it lets you disable writing data to the external drive after a specified period of time, enable system tray minimize option, and add/remove drives. If you use external drive(s) on daily basis, it can be handy to enable auto-start option for KeepAliveHD to start it with Windows Startup.


The Drive info tab provides an overview of the available and used space of all local and external drives.

drive Info

KeepAliveHD works on Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7.

Download KeepAliveHD


  1. Hmm. I guess I’m having trouble seeing what is the salient benefit of a tool like this over the very thing which the reviewer, here, wrote in the opening sentence: Simply going into Advanced Power Options and configuring accordingly. It’s so simple.

    But, hey… maybe that’s just me.

    Gregg L. DesElms
    Napa, California USA
    gregg at greggdeselms dot com

    • Unfortunately there is no option in windows to disable the external HDD from going into automatic standby. That’s why I wrote this program.

    • Thank you very much for it! I have an external WD drive which goes into standby mode quite often, taking bits of its life with it.

      This application really helps out!

    • Kako da iskljucim automatsku sleep opciju na externom hdd Transcend?
      Za windows mi je jasno ali ako ext. hdd prikljucim na sony ps3 posle 10 min. se hdd iskljuci i zamrzne mi sony ps3. hvala unapred na odgovoru.

    • Unfortunately, brilliant hardware manufacturers have started to disable the ability to do this on some newer hard drives. There is value in having a small startup program running which does this automatically. Hopefully this one won’t be a resource hog like nosleephd.

      If I had known that my Toshiba HD had this annoying ‘feature’ prior to purchase I would have just gotten the WD or Seagate instead. Honestly what are these fools thinking when they push out products like this with no option to turn off their stupid ‘features’

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