Wake-On-LAN

What Does Wake-On-LAN Mean?

Wake-on-LAN (WoL) is a particular function that allows a computer or workstation to be powered up from a low-power state by a message from another part of a local area network. Companies and other entities may use Wake-on-LAN to conserve power in networked computing.

Advertisements

Techopedia Explains Wake-On-LAN

Using Wake-on-LAN, administrators can provide for computers to be working remotely through Ethernet or wireless cards. The Wake-on-LAN signal can come from a computer or device on the same LAN or from somewhere on a different network, through subnet directed broadcasts or through a Wake-on-LAN Gateway service.

In Wake-on-LAN, a sleeping computer is looking for a ‘magic packet’ sent to the entire network with its particular MAC address contained. This will provide the signal for that computer to essentially boot itself up from a sleeping or hibernating state. Developers can use BIOS to enable Wake-on-LAN.

Advertisements

Related Terms

Margaret Rouse
Technology Expert

Margaret is an award-winning technical writer and teacher known for her ability to explain complex technical subjects to a non-technical business audience. Over the past twenty years, her IT definitions have been published by Que in an encyclopedia of technology terms and cited in articles by the New York Times, Time Magazine, USA Today, ZDNet, PC Magazine, and Discovery Magazine. She joined Techopedia in 2011. Margaret's idea of a fun day is helping IT and business professionals learn to speak each other’s highly specialized languages.