My Mac OS X El Capitan seems to start up on its own, out of the blue. Even though I have powered it off. It starts at random.

I do not have any startup program or anything scheduled for this to happen. Any insights? Is this a security risk or effect?

  • Just to make sure: have you checked that you have turned off automatic booting in System Preferences > Energy Saver? – Brick Sep 18 '16 at 7:22
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    Can you clarify if the machine is fully powered off or if it's in standby? – djmoch Sep 18 '16 at 10:54
  • @broodijng_goat Please clarify how you know it is starting up. Does the screen turn on? Did you see activity in the logs? – Alistair McMillan Sep 18 '16 at 15:05

You may have your Mac setup to start automatically. To check follow these steps:

  1. From the Apple menu, choose System Preferences
  2. Select Energy Saver
  3. Click on the Schedule button
  4. Check the options to see if this is what's causing your problem
  5. Make any changes you need to
  6. Click OK

Hope this helps!

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  • It was checked to wake up at midnight Unchecked it. – brooding_goat Sep 19 '16 at 7:20

Check console.app, it logs how the system was started and why. If it's a Maintenance Wake / Dark Wake going wrong, it behaves like you describe in some cases. If it's a preset, it will say something about an RTC Alarm. If it was an external device, it will also mark it so. Long story short: check the logs.

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  • Looks like it was schedule to start at midnight. Shows the same in console. Thanks – brooding_goat Sep 19 '16 at 7:22

Alternatively, do you have it set to respond to Ethernet wake packets and have something wired that might be sending them?

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