I've had my PS3 running Folding@Home since Saturday evening. If I'm quiet, I can hear the fan running. I'm sure I'm doing some good for the project, but I wonder what good I am doing to my $700 investment. Am I dogging the crap out of it?
I keep my laptop on for weeks at a time, and over time my laptop's cooling fan has begun to make chainsaw-like noises.
I'm well aware that all things wear out if you use them too long, that's why I urge any PS3 engineers that visit this forum and see this thread to post here and tell us all what sort of 'PS3 on' regimen is recommended. I would equally like to hear from regular PS3 users who may or may not have had problems running their PS3s for marathon periods of time.
Ol' Kahuna says "This is the AKS-74. The preferred weapon of your enemy, and it makes a distictive sound when fired at you. So, remember it!"
I've had my PS3 on nearly continuously, first running Linux, now FAH. Generally lots of power up/dows will be more wear than leaving it on. I'd say keep it as dust free as you can as the dust will get sucked into the air intakes and eventually could clog up the fans and don't run it continuously if it's in an enclosed cabinet without good ventilation. Otherwise it's just like running another computer 24/7 - should be just fine.
I know I have to replace the fans in my computer every once in a while. Other than getting dirty, the bearings start to go out and that is the noise you hear. The PS3's could have the same problem after a year or so. Hopefully, they will have replacement fans available or a local place you can take them to get them serviced for those who have the extended warranties. After my warrany is up I have no problem taking it apart to clear the dirt out. I have to do it to the PS2 about once a year. I just don't know of any way to keep the dirt out without investing in a huge filtration system and keeping the whole house dust free. Its possible just impractible. I figure I will deal with any problems as they surface.