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Question Two NICS, only want one used for WOL and the other for LAN/WAN access.

LikeLinus

Lifer
Jul 25, 2001
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I have a SuperMicro SC846 using a Mellanox Connectx-3 10GbE card for it's LAN/WAN connection. I decided I wanted to use WOL magic packets, but it appears the card doesn't support it. I saw a couple of post somewhere that said some of the OEM cards don't have that feature.

The motherboard has an on-board Intel 1GbE port that I keep disabled. It obviously support sWOL and I'd like to be able to use it in conjunction with my 10GbE card.

What is the best way to set up it up where the Intel ethernet doesn't interfere with the Mellanox card and only use it for WOL? Is it as simple as giving it a static IP, then maybe a 0.0.0.0 DNS, Gateway or something of that nature? I want to avoid causing any issues with the server where it may drop connections because it's trying to use one card vs the other.

This is for WFH and not mission critical, but something more a nice to have. Figured I'd ask to see if anyone has a quick answer. Thank you!!
 

mv2devnull

Golden Member
Apr 13, 2010
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How does WOL work? The NIC has standby power when machine is turned off and does listen for WOL packets, and powers up if it gets one?
That all happens when the OS is not running.

Surely you can configure the WFH to not use a NIC/port (even if it has link)? "Disable" connection?
 

LikeLinus

Lifer
Jul 25, 2001
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WFH = Work From Home. Yes, the computer is in sleep or hibernation and will boot up the computer when it receives a magic packet sent over the LAN from another computer to that NIC's MAC address. It's better than leaving it on 24/7.
 

JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
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This basically needs configuration of Second LAN between the second NIC and what ever you want to use as the packet sender that need to be on the second LAN too.

If you have a regular Home LAN with one regular Router it a problem and more hardware that is capable to handle such situation has to be added.


:cool:
 

LikeLinus

Lifer
Jul 25, 2001
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This basically needs configuration of Second LAN between the second NIC and what ever you want to use as the packet sender that need to be on the second LAN too.

If you have a regular Home LAN with one regular Router it a problem and more hardware that is capable to handle such situation has to be added.

:cool:
My setup is as follows:

AT&T Fiber Modem > Dell R210 II (pFsense Firewall) > MikroTik CRS317-1G-16S+ (16 port 10GbE) > MikroTik CSS326-24G-2S+RM (24 port 1GbE, it is linked with the via 10GbE to the CRS317).

So the Intel NIC would be plugged into the CSS326 and the Mellanox is connected to the CRS317.

pFsense is running the DHCP server. What I'm trying to avoid is that the LAN computers connect to the 1GbE instead of the 10GbE. This is really most important for the items in my rack and PCs for video editing and such. Everything else in the house runs on 1GbE or Ubiquiti UniFi AP AC Pros throughout the house.

When you are talking about separate lan, do you mean running a VLAN with one of my clients and that Intel Server NIC? I guess I could assign the Intel NIC it's own VLAN and let the clients that I need to turn on the server just have multiple VLANs set. Didn't think about that, but I assume it will work?

Let me know if this was your line of thinking or if you have other ideas. Big thanks for the reply!
 
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mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
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Haven't play with WOL for a long long time.

In theory Windows will assign automatic metric value for each NIC according to it's speed. The lower the value, the higher the priority. So the NIC with higher speed NIC will be used If several NICs are connected. If you worry that Windows won't assign correct values, then you assign your own.



Since when you issue a WOL command or use WOL utility, you need to give an IP / MAC address, the WOL packets will go to the NIC you specified. In this case, it will be your INTEL gigabit NIC. Even if you assign DNS, gateway on the INTEL NIC, the Mellanox Connectx-3 10GbE card will be used for all other traffic since it has higher metric value.
 
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mv2devnull

Golden Member
Apr 13, 2010
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Since when you issue a WOL command or use WOL utility, you need to give an IP / MAC address, the WOL packets will go to the NIC you specified.
Wikipedia writes:
"Because Wake-on-LAN operates below the IP protocol layer, IP addresses and DNS names are meaningless and so the MAC address is required."

Whoever is doing the wake up, does broadcast a magic packet with MAC of target. The target neither has nor needs IP address. Furthermore, you don't have to wake up what is already running. Can't you simply disable the NIC in Windows?
 

mxnerd

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Jul 6, 2007
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Wikipedia writes:
"Because Wake-on-LAN operates below the IP protocol layer, IP addresses and DNS names are meaningless and so the MAC address is required."

Whoever is doing the wake up, does broadcast a magic packet with MAC of target. The target neither has nor needs IP address. Furthermore, you don't have to wake up what is already running. Can't you simply disable the NIC in Windows?
As I said, I haven't played with WOL for years. I guess the IP is just for finding the MAC address more easily if I use LAN IP scanner (integrated in some WOL utilities)?


The above utility did not work properly. Please use anything else instead. Like this one: https://wol.aquilatech.com/

If you disable the NIC, how do you wake the Windows system up, which is sleeping?

WOL is not just for waking up the NIC, it's for waking up the whole system that's in sleeping state.
 
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mv2devnull

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Apr 13, 2010
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As I said, I haven't played with WOL for years. I guess the IP is just for finding the MAC address more easily if I use LAN IP scanner (integrated in some WOL utilities)?


If you disable the NIC, how do you wake the Windows system up, which is sleeping?

WOL is not just for waking up the NIC, it's for waking up the whole system that's in sleeping state.
The IP Scanner probably sends ARP call: "Who (mac) has IP XYZ?"

The only thing where I've used WOL is to start a NAS that is turned off (not just sleeping). I presume that when the NIC (which is partially powered, just like the motherboard, "on standby") essentially "presses the power-button" when it gets the WOL packet. Whether that "powers on" or "wakes from sleep" is up to the other components, just like when you touch the physical power-button.

The "disable" as in OS says: "I'm not using this", rather than something deeper; the NIC is fully operational, but not used. OP has had the NIC disabled at BIOS, i.e. BIOS said: "this device does not exist". That is "deep". Of course, if Windows does prioritize connections, then it can have both "in use".
 

mxnerd

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Jul 6, 2007
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OP never mentioned that he disabled the INTEL NIC in the BIOS. I also made the assumption that the OS was Windows and he disabled the NIC inside the OS when he said

WFH = Work From Home. Yes, the computer is in sleep or hibernation and will boot up the computer when it receives a magic packet sent over the LAN from another computer to that NIC's MAC address. It's better than leaving it on 24/7.
Also did not realize that his SuperMicro SC846 is a 24-bay chassis that you can pair with quite a few different motherboards. No idea what his OS is for the system.
 
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mv2devnull

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Apr 13, 2010
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Oh my, I should read better. Guilty of making assumptions am I.

Nevertheless, if the Intel NIC is enabled in BIOS and disabled in OS, then one would need merely to enable the WOL-support in BIOS (and memorize the MAC).
 

LikeLinus

Lifer
Jul 25, 2001
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Sorry, here is some clarification. The NIC is disabled in Windows device manager. Not at the BIOS level. I'm a little busy right now, but I will try it later this afternoon or tonight. Thanks guys!

I read this initially and I thought you had to have it enabled in Windows as well. Hence the confusion.


"On Windows 10, if you want to use the WoL feature, you must enable it first on the motherboard firmware (or on the network adapter if you are using an external device) and then on the Windows settings."
 

mv2devnull

Golden Member
Apr 13, 2010
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Ok, so "sleepy Windows" actually does something. And, the page continues:
"... some devices support waking from hibernation or powered off state, even though Windows 10 does not participate in the process."

You could test first whether the Intel NIC supports WOL from powered off state or hibernation.
 

mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
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Tested my own DELL PC, it won't wake up from WOL magic packet sent from my smartphone app in power off state, the LED light on INTEL ethernet port wasn't blinking or being on, apparently the ethernet port power was cut off, however both BIOS firmware & INTEL ethernet driver has the wakeup in power off state option turned on.

It can be waked up in sleep mode though, where ethernet & power switch LED kept blinking, and USB hub still was receiving power (hub LED was on).
 

Fallen Kell

Diamond Member
Oct 9, 1999
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The easiest solution would be to create a second VLAN for the WOL capability. I am not really familiar with those microtik switches, but I suspect they should be capable.

You can do this one of two ways depending on the capabilities of the switch(es):
1) Connect the 846's onboard NIC to a port on the switch and set that port to the new WoL VLAN ID. Setup the port from the computer you want to use to send the WoL packet to the 846 to be a port that has multiple VLANs and configure the second VLAN for that NIC in the OS (picking a different subnet than your main network so you don't have to deal with strange routing rules).

2) Connect the 846's onboard NIC to a port on the switch and set that port to the new WoL VLAN ID. Connect a second NIC from the computer you want to use to wake up the 846 to another port on the switch that is also configured to the WoL VLAN ID. Again, configure the IP addresses on the new VLAN to be a different subnet than what you currently use (i.e. if you use 192.168.1.XXX for your primary subnet, use 192.168.10.XXX for the WoL subnet).

The difference between 1 and 2 above is that in 1, you only use a single physical (layer 2) connection from the system that will be used to wake up the other machine. In config 2, you use two connections to your network on both machines.

In both cases above, do not use DHCP for the WoL, and you don't have to worry about setting the WoL VLAN to route back to the rest of your network (and you don't have to configure in pFsense a new interface/virtual interface for the WoL VLAN).


In my home network I do not have pFsense acting as my DHCP system, but instead have my WiFi router doing that role (the pFsense system only has access to my WAN VLAN and LAN VLAN ID's and nothing else). My core switch/router has all the VLANs defined (I have VLANs for WAN, LAN, Production, Management, Guest, and IoT).
 
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mxnerd

Diamond Member
Jul 6, 2007
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Don't use the Nirsoft's WakeMeOnLAN utility I posted earlier, which kept using default port 40000 (usually the standard port is 9 or 7, my INTEL NIC worked with port 9), and has difficulty dealing with multiple NICs , always chose wrong adapter. Please use any other WOL Windows or Android app.

https://wol.aquilatech.com/ seems a good one. It's open source and even comes with WOL packet sniffer (listener).
 
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LikeLinus

Lifer
Jul 25, 2001
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WOL is a much nicer tool. You can send shutdown commands and launch Remote Desktop just from double clicking the computer icon. Thanks for the suggestion.
 
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