NBG4115 Wake-on-Lan

I've been trying to set up a wake-on-lan feature on my NBG4115 router to wake up a home computer from my work though the Internet, but there is an issue.
This router supports WoL option (see image below).
I made it work, and I can wake up a local PC from this Depicus online tool:
However, the router stops responding to the WOL commands after a short time of inactivity (not being used by any device).

For example:
1) While at home (connected to the Zyxel router via Wi-Fi), I can wake up the PC using the Depicus online tool.
2) By the time I get to work (about 1 hour) and try to wake up this PC, it does not wake up.
3) When I get home after work, and (important !) just connect my phone to Wi-Fi, I can wake up the PC using the Depicus online tool.
4). If I don't connect any device to my Wi-Fi network, then the Zyxel router can't wake up the PC again.
5) If I reboot the router (remove and insert the power plug), then the router can wake up the PC using the online tool.

So, I figured that the issue is not the local PC itself, because it can wake up after any time of inactivity. The issue is with the Zyxel router, because if no device is actively using it, it stops responding to the WoL commands.
The router is set-up as a DHCP router, and the PC's MAC address and IP address are listed in the Static DHCP table (image 2). I also reserved the IP address for this PC (MAC address) - see image 3 - there is a checkbox on "reserve".
After reading about the issue, it looks like the issue might be due to a timeout of an ARP table. However, I don't see this APR table anywhere in this router.
If the APR table timeout is a known issue, then why did Zyxel implement the WoL function on this router but did not provide access to the APR table?
The last effort would be to connect to the router management (router GUI) from the internet, and then wake up the needed PC, but I don't really want to have an access to the router from the Internet. The WoL is available, and I should be able to use it.
The issue is that this Zyxel router stops responding to the WoL commands from the Internet if no devices are connected to the Router for some time.

Did anyone experience this issue, and are there any solutions?
The Firmware version is V1.00(BFS.7)C0.


All Replies

  • tonygibbs16tonygibbs16 Member Posts: 126  Ally Member
    edited February 22, 2021 4:50AM
    Hello @latlive

    I have just looked in the user guide, at ftp://ftp.zyxel.com/NBG4115/user_guide/NBG4115_1_ed5.pdf and it seems that Wake MAC Address field needs to have the MAC address filled in of the device on your LAN that you want to wake up.

    See below extract.

    I hope that this is helpful.

    Kind regards,

  • tonygibbs16tonygibbs16 Member Posts: 126  Ally Member
    Hi @latlive

    If you try the Wake on LAN by entering the MAC address of the device you want to wake up and clicking Start does that work?

    If not then there is an incompatibility of some sort between the Zyxel device and the device you want to wake up.

    Also what happens if you set the server port to the https://www.depicus.com/wake-on-lan/woli default port of 4343 ?

    Kind regards,
  • tonygibbs16tonygibbs16 Member Posts: 126  Ally Member
    edited February 22, 2021 5:13AM
    Hi @latlive

    Have you also checked the items that are on this page? https://www.depicus.com/wake-on-lan/what-is-wake-on-lan

    Also, does it work at all if you connect the device you want to wake up by a cable rather than WiFi?

    Kind regards,
  • tonygibbs16tonygibbs16 Member Posts: 126  Ally Member
    Hi @latlive

    This forum post might also help you https://www.tenforums.com/network-sharing/168692-how-wake-lan-wol-hibernation-over-wifi.html

    Kind regards,
  • tonygibbs16tonygibbs16 Member Posts: 126  Ally Member
    edited February 22, 2021 5:32AM
    hi @latlive

    You might also need to add a firewall rule to the NBG4115 in order to allow WoL from WAN to work.

    Kind regards,

  • Thank you very much for your replies.
    In order of your posts:
    1) Per the manual, the Zyxel Router web GUI offers the field for the MAC address and the button "Start".
    This field is not saved. It clears as soon as I press the "Start" button. This is just to manually wake up a PC from GUI.
    2) Yes, if I enter the PC's MAC address and click "Start", then the computer wakes up.
    Further to that, the WoL worked even from the Internet (I indeed can wake up a PC) - it just stops working after about 30 minutes of router inactivity. If I'm connected to the router all day (e.g. weekend), then the WoL from the internet works all day too.
    I will set the port to 4343 and report if it affects anything. (I'm certain it won't make a difference, but let's see).
    3) the PC is only connected via a LAN cable, not a Wi-Fi. That computer doesn't even have a wi-fi capability. I read through the Depicus post, and agree that it's complicated to do WoL through the Internet due to safety. Other technical data in the post is a bit over my head.
    4) I will try what people suggest in the forum that you recommended.
    5) Regarding the Firewall, do you mean to add a rule into the NAT table? I will try a few options there too.

    It's wierd that the WOL from the internet starts working as soon as I connect any device to the Zyxel wi-fi. It is as if it goes to sleep and doesn't respond to WoL commands until I start using it again. Even a power off/on (in which case, probably, any temporary internal tables would be erased) allows the router to do the WoL from the Internet.

    I apreciate your help.
    I'll do the things you recommended, and report back.
    Thank you!

  • I was able to test the router per the suggestions above, and none of them helped to keep the WoL over the router active.
    Just want to repeat that I can wake up the PC from the internet any time as long as at least one device is connected to the Zyxel router.

    As the last ditch effort, I decided to allow access to Zyxel management (web GUI) from the internet. The idea was that I would be able to connect directly to the router GUI from my work and then wake up the lan PC from the router.
    My router can create a magic packet (see my 1st post, picture 1). I checked that I could connect to the router from outside my network (e.g. accessing it from my cell phone), and it worked.
    However, to my surprise, access the web GUI stopped after an hour of not using the router.
    By not using the router I mean that I disconnected all wifi devices from the router network and did not connect any during an hour.
    So, the issue with the router extends into the inability to access any port after an hour of inactivity. It might be less than an hour - probably 30 mins, but I didn't test it yet.
    On the other hand, as long as at least 1 device is connected (e.g. my cell phone) to the Zyxel wifi, the router allows access to its GUI from the internet as well as WoL feature.
    I think I can get WoL working if I can ensure that the router does not "fall asleep".
    This looks like the router simply goes into hibernation and cuts off all ports. I have no idea what it is and why this is happening.
    There is no mention of such behaviour in the manual, nor any options in the router GUI.
    As mentioned before, as long as I use the router actively, I can connect to it from the web and use WoL function.

    What could this be, and how could I set up the router so that it allows me to connect to it any time (not just while using its wifi)?

    Many thanks!

  • tonygibbs16tonygibbs16 Member Posts: 126  Ally Member
    Hi @latlive

    Thanks very much for your reply. You're welcome.

    As a fellow Zyxel customer, the last thing I can suggest for the router GUI going to sleep would be to try upgrading to the BFS.8 firmware version, see ftp://ftp.zyxel.com/NBG4115/firmware/ .
         - it might not fix it, as the release notes in 2015 don't mention that it would.

    If that does not work, then you could drop Zyxel a direct communications at https://service-provider.zyxel.com/emea/en/general-enquiry

    Kind regards,
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