remotely boot (power up) a machine?

By Spike ยท 11 replies
Sep 13, 2005
  1. I have a network where there are two workstations and a fileserver connected via a router. All run WinXP Professional sp2.

    The file server is configured to shut itself down at the end of each day, and has no keyboard, monitor, or mouse. I would also like for it to switch itself on at the start of each day.

    As I understand it, the "boot from LAN" option in BIOS is an option to boot the OS of another computer on the network (a ghost machine if you will).

    Is there any way that I can boot the fileserver over a network so that I can hide the box somewhere out of the way and it doesn't have to be manually booted each morning?
  2. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Boot from LAN means the computer will load its operating system from another computer over the network instead of the hard disk. Not the OS of that computer but anything you want.

    The feature you want is called "Wake on LAN" (WOL). All newer motherboards and NICs support it - all you have to do is to enable it in BIOS (if needed/available) and connect the WOL wire from the NIC to the mobo (unless embedded). To start up the fileserver you send a "magic packet" to its MAC address. Many programs out there to do that.
  3. ChineseTechie

    ChineseTechie TS Rookie Posts: 85

    what's NIC??
  4. tdeg

    tdeg TS Rookie Posts: 119

  5. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,276   +461

  6. Spike

    Spike TS Evangelist Topic Starter Posts: 2,168

    Thanks guys. :) Much appreciated.
  7. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    I have a further question on this issue that a friend of mine ran in to.

    All the needed features of WOL are on. The PC is OFF. And he is at a remote location and wants the turn the PC ON. However, he doesn't know the MAC address offhand. All the necessary ports are forwarded through the router.

    So the question is, because the WOL features keeps the PC in a sort of "on" state, or at least the NIC is in an on state; is there a way to GET the MAC address from a remote location?

    Note that because the PC is off, it doesn't have an IP address, so there is no information in the router for IP lease and naturally the ARP table is flushed.
    Is there a "magic" way to use the router or somehow get the MAC address of a PC that is off but has WOL on?

    I know the security concerns of being able to do this, of course you don't want your WOL PC being so easily turned on from the NET. But assume he has full access to the router, as well as remote desktop to a fellow PC behind the router. Can he retrieve the MAC address of the WOL PC? Sorry to be redundant.

  8. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    The magic method is called pen and paper :p Of course you can flood the network with magic packets containing all possible MAC address combinations..
  9. Vigilante

    Vigilante TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,666

    Yes, and women won't yell anymore. Microsoft will build a good OS. A Whopper sandwich will go back to .99 cents. Gas will go to 50cents. And America won't be overweight.

    But I'd rather do something realistic :) :) :dead:
  10. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    Well, if you know the make of the NIC then you can narrow down the address range -there are specific ranges of MAC addresses assigned to different chip makers.
  11. garethr

    garethr TS Rookie

    Hi there,
    Can't seem to find out which port the magic packet with:
    is sent to, for forwarding purposes.

    Does anybody know?

  12. Nodsu

    Nodsu TS Rookie Posts: 5,837   +6

    A quick look with tcpdump says that mc-wol uses UDP port 65535 to send its packets.
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