How to Setup and Use Wake-On-LAN across a Company Network?



What can be more frustrating for a network administrator than inability to access a computer when needed? You planned to run tests or install latest updates on the desktop of that guy from the marketing team, who’s sent you three reminders today regarding the problems with his computer, but then he turned it off before leaving the office for an outside meeting. What are your going to tell him and your boss tomorrow morning? Fortunately, the Wake-on-LAN technology is here to help you in such situations and turn on computers remotely when you need to get access to them. Connectionclues

 Wake-on-LAN (also referred as WOL and Wake on LAN) is a networking standard implemented by the modern computer hardware. It allows waking up computers connected to the Ethernet network by sending them a special network packet. It is a standard for modern hardware, and, in most cases, it works independently of the software platform, so as far as you have a compatible motherboard, network card and power supply, you can use it on Windows, Linux, Mac and other platforms. Connectionclues

In order to wake up a remote computer, you need to send a so-called magic packet to it. This packet contains the computer’s MAC address to be able to identify the target. The magic packet is distributed to all computers in the local network though a broadcast and is processed by the computer that detects its own MAC address in the packet. To enable operation of this technology, the computer must not be powered off, because its network card and motherboard should receive and process the network packets. You may shut the computer down to switch it into the low-power mode and keep only the required components running. Hardware and software configuration is a required step to enable Wake-on-LAN operation on a computer. First of all, you have to enter the BIOS settings and enable WOL there. You can refer to the motherboard documentation in order to have detailed instructions on that. On Windows computers, you should also go to the network card properties in the Device Manager and enable wake-up by a magic packet there. The particular configuration steps may vary for different network cards, and checking hardware documentation makes sense if you have problems with the configuration


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