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I have two computers: a Mac Pro, and a Macbook Air. When my Mac Pro is on (awake), I can use screen sharing to take over its screen. It displays in the Finder sidebar as a networked computer. However, when it is asleep, it does not appear in the sidebar.

How can I wake my Mac Pro (or always have it displayed in the sidebar) so when I am ready to screen share, it is available?

I have already enabled Wake for ethernet network access in System Preferences > Energy Saver. Now I need to figure out how to wake it up.

Update: I am running Snow Leopard on all of them. I am also networked using an Airport Extreme.

Update: From what I understand, you can only use WakeOnLan on computers hard-wired to the network. My laptop is using Wi-Fi and my desktop is hard-wired. I'm trying to wake my desktop from my wi-fi laptop, but WakeOnLan does not allow sending the "WakeOnLan packets" from a non-hard-wired connection. Can someone confirm/deny this statement?

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    Which version(s) of OS X are you using & what is the network configuration?
    – l'L'l
    Oct 7, 2011 at 5:06

5 Answers 5

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The aptly called WakeOnLan is a free, simple tool for Mac, both available as application and widget.

What is WakeOnLan?
WakeOnLan discovers all other computers in your LAN, and enables you to wake them up by clicking a button. If your remote computer is a Mac you can put it asleep too.

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  • This would have been the perfect solution. However, it isn't working for me. I think I might be a litte buggy running on Snow Leopard.
    – Andrew
    Oct 12, 2011 at 3:58
  • What is "Buggy"?
    – Jadav
    Mar 28, 2013 at 22:47
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You can wake up your Mac over wireless.

First, your Mac must support Wake on Wireless.

Second, your router must support Wireless Multimedia Extensions (WME), also known as Wi-Fi Multimedia (WMM).

After your enabled WME on your router, you must enable "Wake for network access" on your Mac.

Then check the MAC address of your wireless card of your Mac.

Put your Mac into sleep.

From a second computer log in to your router and with the WOL (Wake on LAN) option wake up your Mac wirelessly by entering the MAC address.

.... Wake on Demand requires an Apple AirPort Base Station or Time Capsule with firmware 7.4.2 or later installed. To use Wake on Demand wirelessly with a WPA or WPA2 network, the AirPort base station or Time Capsule must be hosting the network (see below).

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    It looks like you pasted this from somewhere but didn't attribute it. Also, this functionality shouldn't depend on having Apple hardware for the router. Sep 18, 2015 at 2:22
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Apple Remote Desktop can wake a remote computer up. See the article RemoteDesktop 3.0 Help for additional information.

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    Article seems to be gone. You should always include the information in your answer. Link only answers become useless.
    – not2savvy
    Mar 14, 2018 at 20:26
  • Replaced with a web archive link.
    – Nickolay
    Nov 20, 2023 at 7:45
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I have been looking for years, and nothing can wake a sleeping Mac if it's on a Wifi network. Except the Mac itself with the right software. But nothing external can do it. In fact, I feel more secure because of that fact.

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    This is very much untrue in general since most recent Mac hardware ships with network adapters that support wake on lan packets. The OS also has support for this as well as working with routers using bonjour sleep proxy.
    – bmike
    Aug 26, 2012 at 19:35
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Sleeping Macs with wake for ethernet access enabled will register with an Airport so that an incoming ssh connection will be sensed by the router and send a Wake on Lan packet to wake up the Mac.

Basically, ssh can wake a sleeping mac under some circumstances. This function also works for screen sharing.

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    It would help if you could be more specific.
    – l'L'l
    Oct 7, 2011 at 5:41
  • @ioi Ditto. More specifics.
    – daviesgeek
    Oct 9, 2011 at 6:23
  • This is actually the correct answer. The problem is if the computer is asleep, you won't know the IP address to SSH to. I guess if the computer's IP address is static (doesn't change) then you can always SSH to the same IP.
    – Andrew
    Mar 29, 2013 at 2:59

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