Wake on LAN (WOL) has been a go-to solution for most network admins to ensure an uninterrupted IT resource. Aiding in remote booting of wired and wireless networks, WoL helps optimize energy usage even as it ensures your network resources are readily available. Enabling you to boot your machines on demand, and switch them to a low power mode when not in use, WoL saves you hefty power bills and helps you avoid the time-consuming manual task of restarting your network devices physically.
WoL mechanism: A quick peek
WoL effects remote booting by transmitting a specially designed network framework called magic packets to the target devices. A network admin can perform a remote wake up by transmitting the magic packets to the target device. To do this, a WoL message is broadcast to all the machines in the local network, including the target machine. The machines in low power mode that are enabled with WoL infrastructure will “listen” to the broadcast message. The machine boots up if the received WoL magic packet contains its MAC address.
Network devices are required to stay in a low power mode and not completely plugged off from the power source, to use this mechanism.
There are various standalone WoL tools that offers remote booting. However, certain constraints imposed by these tools render them inefficient to be used in organizational networks.
Drawbacks of using standalone Wake on LAN tools
Organizations operate on large dynamic networks that include hundreds or even thousands of network devices. Network admins would have to ensure that their network resources are up and running whenever a team requires them. Using a standalone WoL tool can help in remote booting, but it comes with limitations such as:
Can boot only one device at a time: Most WoL tools can boot only one device at a time. This implies that for a group of 10 devices, you have to enter 10 MAC addresses separately, one after the other, to boot those devices remotely. This can be an inconvenience for network admins employing the WoL mechanism on large scale networks.
The MAC address of the target machine needs to be known: Network admins have to specify the MAC address of the target machine. The tool by itself does not provide the list of MAC addresses or the devices in the network. Network admins have to look for other solutions that can provide them visibility into MAC addresses for their network devices.
No visibility into the status of wake up: Once a wake up has been performed, there is no way for the network admin to view the status of the network devices, whether the booting is complete, or if the device is still offline. Most standalone WoL tools do not provide insight into the real-time status of the target machine.
No option to schedule wake up: With standalone WoL tools, there is no option to schedule wake-up routines for a device, or group of devices, that require monotonous wake-up schedules.
OpUtils: An advanced IP address manager with built-in WoL tool
ManageEngine OpUtils’ IP Address Manager and Switch Port Mapper comes with a built in Wake on LAN tool that overcomes the challenges of standalone WoL tools. By integrating with OpUtils’ IP Address Manager, this WoL tool enables you to perform effective remote booting with added network resource management capabilities.
Enable remote network discovery and on-demand wake up of multiple devices at a time
OpUtils’ IP Address Manager automates network discovery with flexible discovery and rediscovery options, including discovery from spreadsheets, router, and servers. The IP address manager pulls out the real-time status of your network address space.
OpUtils’ WoL provides you with a view of all the MAC addresses in the network. You can use this list to trigger wake-up calls to network devices. This helps you avoid the need to maintain separate records of MAC addresses, which is required of other standalone WoL tools. This also enables you to boot multiple devices remotely, providing significant savings in time and effort.
Create wake-up routines and automate periodic remote booting tasks with the WoL scheduler
OpUtils’ offers a WoL scheduler that enables you to create multiple schedules for a device, or group of devices, that require a periodic wake-up routine. This can be daily, weekly, monthly, or just once. The scheduler automates the monotonous task of periodic remote booting, and also provides visibility into the status of the scheduled wake up of different devices, in the WoL console.
Create multiple device groups with custom WoL schedules
The WoL tool enables admins to create multiple groups containing different devices requiring the same wake-up routines. These groups can be scheduled to run at different times. There is no restriction on the number of groups that can be created. The WoL tool displays the number of devices in the group, the number of running devices, and the last time the group was scanned.
You can view the status of the individual devices in the groups as well as the holistic status of groups under the Device and Group tabs respectively, under the Wake on LAN tab in the UI.
Gain visibility into the networking aspects and the address configuration of devices
With WoL’s device view, which displays the network devices along with the DNS name and MAC address details pulled by OpUtils’ IP Address Manager, you can analyze different network aspects of devices currently running in your network.
Searching the device by its IP address in the IP Address Manager gives you comprehensive insights into the networking aspects of the device, such as its network interface card type, reservation status, switch port, asset details, or last scan time. Additionally, you can drill down to details such as its physical location, or the system name of the device currently using the IP.
That’s not all! OpUtils also offers Switch Port Mapper, Rogue Detection, Networking Tools, more than 30 network tools, and a supplementary mobile app for effective network resources monitoring, tracking, and troubleshooting.
New to ManageEngine OpUtils? Schedule a free live demo with a product expert who will walk you through all the features of OpUtils, or download a 30-day free trial to learn hands-on how OpUtils can enhance your IP address and switch port management strategy.
** Optrics Inc. is an Authorized ManageEngine partner
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