Dell Mini 1012 Discussion forum on the new 2010 Dell Mini 1012, featuring an Intel Atom N450 CPU.

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danwalmsley danwalmsley is offline
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Default Recommended battery care? - 02-24-2011, 11:53 PM

Guys what is the best option to preserve battery life when running under AC?

- Always run on battery and only use the AC when charging.
- Leave the AC in all the time where possible, only use the battery when needed?

I assumed that when the battery is at 100%, keeping it on AC power is bad for the battery?

Or does the BIOS disable charging when its 100%?

Any advice?
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avigar avigar is offline
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Default 02-25-2011, 02:09 AM

I usually remove the battery, when convenient, if I know that I will be running on AC power for several hours. It's also recommended that you run the battery almost all the way down before recharging it. This will help to extend its usable life.
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rrfranczak3 rrfranczak3 is offline
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Cool 02-25-2011, 02:26 AM

I have had my 1010 for over a year and a half and I never let it go lower than 40% or so...I dont use it much, it sits in the case probably 90-95% of the time and even when I do take it out..I try to take it out at least once every couple of weeks my battery is still at 100% (ok maybe 98 or 99) but the point is that the procedure I have been following by not letting it go below 40% then charging it has worked for me, once it hits 100% I just keep it on charge until I am done using it for that particular time...then pack it up again....then maybe 10 days or 2 weeks later I decide to fire it up again, usually leaving it on AC...I rarely use it on battery alone (unless my power goes off, then at least I can watch TV on it)..but thats just me & my 0.02....


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HTWingNut HTWingNut is offline
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Default 02-25-2011, 06:09 PM

I've used dozens of laptops over the years and I'm sure the Dell mini isn't much different than other newer machines. Just use the machine. I kept my last laptop plugged in 95% of the time, and after almost two years has only lost 3-4% charge. Algorithms for battery management in laptops are very good these days. So just use it and don't worry about it. Batteries start to lose charge significantly after 2-2.5 years anyhow whether used or not. Just the nature of the beast.


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Last edited by HTWingNut; 02-25-2011 at 06:20 PM.
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Pamster Pamster is offline
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Default 02-26-2011, 02:07 AM

I really appreciate the information guys, thank you! I won't worry so much about this myself now. I just plug it in when the battery gets under 40%. Thanks again for this thread!


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kuoh kuoh is offline
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Default 02-27-2011, 08:04 PM

My experiences have been similar to Wingnut's, after 2-3 years, expect a noticeable decrease in battery life, no matter how much you've pampered it. My current oldest laptop still in use is an Inspiron 8600 from 2004, but it still reports 60% capacity and has been plugged into AC for at least 90% of its life. There is no threat with draining the battery to 0% nor with charging it before it's fully drained. These are hold overs from the days of NiCd and NiMH batteries, which had a different chemistry and no protection circuits built in.

However, if you really want to be conscientious about the battery life, the 1012 and most if not all new Dell laptops now have a way to control charging manually. As long as the Dell battery meter utility is installed, you can press Fn-F3 to bring up the battery meter, click on the "Battery Life" tab, then put a check mark in the "Disable battery charging" box. This will prevent charging on AC until you re-enable it again. Ignore what it says about it resetting itself on the next reboot, it lies.

There are various utilities that can give you information about the current capacity of your battery, but my favorite is SIW, which not only gives info about the battery, but just about everything else in the laptop.

SIW | Battery

KuoH
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HTWingNut HTWingNut is offline
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Default 02-27-2011, 11:03 PM

Good info, thanks kuoh.


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rrfranczak3 rrfranczak3 is offline
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Cool 02-27-2011, 11:17 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by kuoh View Post
There is no threat with draining the battery to 0% nor with charging it before it's fully drained.
I have seen many,many,many people on this site suffer a SSD failure when the battery drops to zero or close to it.......I wouldnt suggest trying it..its like running your gas tank down too low....when it gets that low you get all the crap and sludge from the bottom of the tank into your fuel system, well with a battery if you get too low you will get all the crap associated with letting it get too low also.....


Dell Mini 10 (Obsidian Black 1010), 2gb RAM, 1.66ghz 533mhz FSB (Z530) processor, A10 BIOS, 1 Terabyte (1000 GB) WD Scorpio Blue Hard Drive (5400rpm), Intel GMA 500 Integrated Graphics, TV Tuner, Bluetooth 2.1 module with EDR, 1.3mp Camera, 1366x768 HD Screen, Wireless 1510 b/g/n mini card, 6 cell (56WHr) Battery, 4gb SDHC, 64gb Flashdrive, Targus Netbook Chillpad, Targus Sport Case, Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 (500gb)/Windows 8.1 (500gb) (Dual Boot)

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Last edited by rrfranczak3; 02-27-2011 at 11:20 PM.
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kuoh kuoh is offline
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Default 02-27-2011, 11:36 PM

But this is a thread about battery care. That's more a symptom of a design flaw in the interaction with the SSD rather than an actual battery life issue. Besides there are just as many, if not more, reports of SSD failures in normal use, not tied to just a complete battery drain.

I suspect part of the problem lies in the fact that at the low end, the battery remaining estimate is not accurate, and some people are pushing the limit and forcing an occasional dirty shutdown. Modern HDDs & OS's have had many decades to develop safeguards to minimize data loss. SSDs on the other hand, are still a relatively new development, thus still have some kinks to work out.

Still, you can safely offer the advice of not draining the battery to less than 15% before going back on the charger, if you're laptop has an SSD. But I suspect that in another couple of years, they'll have much better resistance to data corruption due to power interruptions.

KuoH

Quote:
Originally Posted by rrfranczak3 View Post
I have seen many,many,many people on this site suffer a SSD failure when the battery drops to zero or close to it
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