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miniWOL – Tiny Wake On LAN tool for Windows and MacOS X

miniWOL – Tiny Wake On LAN tool for Windows and MacOS X

I had not used the good old Wake On LAN option in a while, until my brother-in-law (Jean-Pierre) was looking for something like that to wake up his NAS.

Most of the Wake On LAN applications I found for him were just too extensive, too complicated, or not free. I wanted just a simple menu in the System Tray (Windows: next to the clock, lower-left corner of your screen) or Menu-bar (MacOS X – top of your screen). Well, after quite a bit of searching I could not find anything suitable or to my liking and I decided to just write something myself.

Timing couldn’t be better, since I just wanted to implemented Wake On LAN in another application – ConnectMeNow (for MacOS X).
Reusing the code, making it suitable for Windows and MacOS X, and wrapping it in a small application was done relatively quickly.

This application has been tested under MacOS X 10.11 (El Capitan) and Windows 10 and it’s FREE.

What is Wake On LAN ?

Wake On LAN, or WOL, is a Ethernet standard that allows you to “wake up” computers or network devices that are in stand-by, and is originally intended for use in a local network.

WOL is probably most commonly used to wake up a server or NAS, just before access to these machines is needed – for example a media server, which can sleep all day long until you want to watch a movie. There can be several motivations to do this; save on power, save on wear-and-tear of your equipment, etc.

WOL also requires the network card of this device to be semi-awake, and still listen to traffic, just in case a “magic packet” is being send to the device. While the NIC (network interface controller) is listening, a lot of traffic might pass that might not even be intended for this network connection, so just listening to network traffic would keep your network device awake even when you don’t want it to be awake.

Note that theoretically WiFi supports Wake on Lan as well, however … not all computers and operating systems support this, so you milage may vary!

The magic packet is a 102 bytes long broadcast frame containing a of payload 6 bytes, all set to 255 (FF FF FF FF FF FF in hexadecimal), followed by 16 repetitions of the target computer’s 48-bit MAC address.

Example (Mac Address = A2:3B:41:00:7A:9B):

A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B
A2 3B 41 00 7A 9B

The Magic Packet (UDP) is typically send to port 9, some systems default to port 7, and some systems allow you to define your own port number.

Normally just one single packet should do the trick, but most Wake On Lan applications actually send more than one packet – just to make sure.

To prevent that just anything can wake up such a network device, a very specifically formatted “magic packet” has to be send over the network. Naturally, you can guess that this is not 100% fool proof, but it’s better than nothing, and in your local network (at home or in the office) this might be safe enough.

Note : As of version 1.2, miniWOL supports subnet directed broadcasting.
This technique does seem to be required for some devices to work with WOL. This is unfortunate, since broadcasts aimed at a specific device (unicast) appears more secure than subnet-directed broadcast. See also these 2 Microsoft Technet articles: About Subnet-Directed Broadcast and Choose Between Unicast and Subnet-Directed Broadcast for Wake On LAN.

Enabling Wake On LAN on your Network Device

Before we can wake up a network device with WOL, you will need setup this device to do so. Quite often you’d need to do some settings in the “BIOS” of your computer, and do some settings in the operating system as well.

Certain devices, like most NAS devices, make it a little easier by offering a simpel “WOL ON/OFF” function.

Since this will be different for most devices, either consult the manual of your device, read an online guide like this one at How-to-Geek, or consult Google.

Wake-On-LAN local vs over the Internet 

miniWOL, and Wake On LAN in general, is intended to be used in a local network, meaning: wake up a network device in the same network you’r in (at home or in the office). To wake up a device at home, over the Internet (ie. you’re in the office or traveling), will require some trickery including, but not limited to, port forwarding. Not every modem/router can even do this. An example can be found here: DD-WRT.

So by default: use miniWOL for devices in your local network.

For waking up devices over the Internet, you will need to do some extra leg work to get everything configured correctly.



The intend of miniWOL is to have a small icon in your SysTray (Windows) or Menubar (MacOS X), where you can send a Wake On LAN magic packet to a defined server. All this without thinking or seeing all the in-depth details (once you’ve configured it right).

To show miniWOL in action:

miniWOL - Windows (left) and MacOS X (right)

miniWOL – Windows (left) and MacOS X (right)


miniWOL is free, and always will be free … you can download it straight from Tweaking4All:


Platform: Mac OS X
Version: 1.2
Size: 1.1 MiB
Date: December 3, 2016
 Download Now 

DOWNLOAD - MiniWOL-Windows 

Platform: Windows
Version: 1.2
Size: 734.8 KiB
Date: December 3, 2016
 Download Now 

miniWOL has been reviewed by SoftPedia as safe.


Installation of miniWOL is straight forward.

  miniWOL for Windows

miniWOL is a 32 bit application, which should work on any Windows version, starting with Windows XP and up.

The easiest way to install this would be just running it from your Downloads folder or Desktop, but it can be done a little cleaner.
I prefer to install my applications in the proper folders so, I’d follow these steps:

  1. Create a folder “miniWOL” in “C:\Program Files (x86)”
  2. Extract “miniWOL.exe” from the ZIP file and place it in the new folder “C:\Program Files (x86)\miniWOL”
  3. Right click “miniWOL.exe” and choose “Create Shortcut” – this will create a shortcut, most likely on your Desktop.


  miniWOL for MacOS X

For MacOS X, this has been tested with Mac OS X 10.11 (El Capitan), but I suspect it will work on any Intel based Mac.
Sorry – PowerPC is not supported.

Unzip the downloaded file and drag the application into your “Applications” folder.


miniWOL is almost identical for Windows and MacOS X, but there are minor differences as can be seen in the screenshots below.

The Windows version allows you to select a different icon for your SysTray, where as the MacOS X version determines if you’re running the normal MacOS X theme or the so called “dark theme” and adjust the icon based on that.

miniWOL Settings (MacOS X)

miniWOL Settings (MacOS X)

miniWOL Settings (Windows 10)

miniWOL Settings (Windows 10)

You can set miniWOL to start automatically when starting Windows or MacOS X by checking “Add miniWol to Startup Items” (Mac) or “Auto start miniWol when Windows starts” (Windows).

To add a server, click “Add” and select the added device in the list.

On the right side you’ll now see some details:

  • Alias – This is what the server name will be in the menu when click miniWOL in the Systray (Windows) or Menubar (Mac)
  • Device Address – This can be the name of the server, but the IP address is prefered.
  • MAC address – MAC address of the targeted server
  • WOL Port – The UDP port used for Wake On Lan (typically: 9)
  • Broadcast Address – The subnet mask for that section of the network you’d like to broadcast to (default:
  • Send on miniWOL Start – When checked a WOL signal will be send to this server when you start (or autostart) miniWOL
  • Test Wake On LAN – This one is handy when testing the settings, to see if the targeted server wakes up
  • Find MAC Address – Tries to automatically find the MAC address of the targeted server (server must be in the same network and ON)


Typically port 9 (UDP) is being used for WOL, so when you’re not sure, start with port 9. Some devices actually seem to see that as a “shutdown” command, and in those cases you could try port 7. If you know what you’re doing and you’ve defined your own port number, then you can set that one of course.

As for the Broadcast Address: leave it at unless you know what you’re doing … 

Obviously, with “Remove” you remove the selected server from the list, and “Clear” will remove all servers from the list.

The checkbox in front of the server name (in the list) determines if a server is listed in the menu when clicking miniWOL in the Systray (Windows) or Menubar (Mac). This way you do not have to delete a server in case you do not want to see it all the time.

All settings are saved automatically, so there is no “Save” button.

Uninstalling miniWOL

miniWOL is easy to uninstall, simply remove the application by deleting it (miniWOL.exe under Windows, or miniWOL under MacOS X).

The only thing left is the configuration file, which can be found here:

Windows: C:\Users\<username>\AppData\Local\miniWOL

Mac OS X/Users/<username>/.config/miniWOL.cfg

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There are 17 comments. You can read them below.
You can post your own comments by using the form below, or reply to existing comments by using the "Reply" button.

  • May 10, 2016 - 4:52 AM - John Comment Link

    Just what I was looking for! Thanks Hans!



    • May 11, 2016 - 5:21 AM - hans - Author: Comment Link

      Thanks John for taking the time to post a “Thank you!” – it’s much appreciated! 



  • Mar 30, 2018 - 1:02 PM - Chris Comment Link

    Hello Hans. Thank you for creating and sharing miniWOL. I just downloaded it (the macOS version) and I found it is just what I was looking for. It works flawlessly in macOS High Sierra 10.13.3. Thanks again. 



    • Mar 31, 2018 - 4:01 AM - hans - Author: Comment Link

      Hi Chris,

      thank you very much for the nice compliment! It’s a great motivator 
      Also good to know it works well on 10.13.3 as well – I originally created the app for my brother-in-law and hardly use it myself.




  • Aug 29, 2018 - 7:31 AM - Stefan Comment Link

    Hello Hans,

    found your miniWol Tool and it is working perfectly on 10.10 Yosemite.

    Thank You very much for your work.


    P.S: You wrote the tool is your brother in Law.
            I use miniWOL to wakeup my NAS.
            Wouldn’t it be better to set the default Broadcast to something like 192.168.X.255 ?
            I believe most people have a Class C Net at home.
            Or change the ToolTipText, to a network-calculater-link like
   (if they authorize)
            But it is just a minor scratch on this fantastic tool. Again, Thanks.



    • Aug 30, 2018 - 3:59 AM - hans - Author: Comment Link

      Hi Stefan!

      Thanks for taking the time to post a compliment and a suggestion! It’s much appreciated.
      Awesome to hear you enjoy the application.

      I agree that most do have indeed a Class C network at home. The problem however is that these are the commonly used private IP (v4) address ranges (per RFC1918):

      • –
      • –
      • –
      The 10.x.x.x and 192.168.x.x ranges do seem to be the most common of the 3.
      So pre=populating (I assume this is what you mean – please correct me if I’m wrong) might be convenient to some, and inconvenient to others.
      I’m open to suggestions though 



      • Aug 30, 2018 - 7:22 AM - Stefan Comment Link

        Hello Hans.

        For me there is no problem for I know what to do, and yes I thought about with no result
        because every defaul depends on IP an subnet.

        So maybe it just enough to set a Link to an online calculator in the hint (ToolTip) or
        in the config – window.

        Btw, tested your ConnectMeNow too, another great Tool, thank you.

        Best Regards

        Groeten uit Bonn 




        • Aug 31, 2018 - 4:35 AM - hans - Author: Comment Link

          Thanks Stefan!

          With ConnectMeNow (I’ll reply to your comment there): Make sur to give the beta (v2) a try – quite a few things have improved. 



        • Aug 31, 2018 - 4:48 AM - hans - Author: Comment Link

          p.s. feel free to email me at webmaster at tweaking4all dot com if you have suggestions so we can talk more about the details. I haven’t worked on miniWOL for a while, but I think it may need an update for Mac anyway (64 bit, signed, etc), so I would be able to add some small functions if they add to it’s usability (I would like to keep the application as simple as possible though).



  • Nov 5, 2018 - 8:13 AM - Ben Comment Link

    Awesome tool, I use it on Mac and Windows. But there seems to be a problem with Windows 10 recently. Doesn’t work any more. 



    • Nov 11, 2018 - 11:09 AM - Ben Comment Link

      I found a solution here:

      The guy suggested to change the broadcast from to the IP of the destination PC. That sounds weird but it happend to work for me. But then it stopped working again. Changing back and forth on my PC did not solve the issue. Then, on the laptop, I had the exact same problem! Then I deleted all entries in the broadcast field and it suddenly worked. 

      I don’t know if this behaviour makes any sense. But since a lot of other people also seem to have similar issues I wanted to post it here.



    • Nov 12, 2018 - 3:31 AM - hans - Author: Comment Link

      Hi Ben,

      the broadcast on should be the default in miniWOL. I did write this program originally for my brother-in-law, since I no longer use WOL for anything.
      I’ll try to do some testing in the next weeks, once I completed one of my other projects. I need to make a setup to test WOL. I also noticed different WOL behavior amongst different devices. For example QNAP implements WOL strict and it always seems to work, whereas Synology is not using the standard all that well and requires a broadcast.



      • Nov 12, 2018 - 6:20 AM - Ben Comment Link

        Thanks a lot! I use it to wake a OpenMediaVault4-RAID. I sometimes also suspect the router and/or additional switch do be the issue here. However, I am glad this tool works as it does and I don’t expect you to put a lot of effort in it. It runs pretty well. :) Thanks for developing it in the first place! It should be a standard utility for Mac, OS X and even Linux. :) 



      • Nov 12, 2018 - 7:18 AM - hans - Author: Comment Link

        Thanks Ben – I’m glad you like the tool and very much appreciate you Thank-You note 

        I’m debating if I should make a Linux version – but I’m not a Linux expert when it comes to developing tools. Especially when looking for something like a menu or systray where I can place the icon. The goal was to make a tiny simple tool for my brother-in-law who has limited computer skills 

        But then I figured it to be useful to others as well … 

        I’m in the middle of migrating all my applications, mostly for macOS, so miniWOL will get some attention as well.
        If only Apple and Microsoft would stop making things so darn complicated (security, signing, etc etc etc).



  • Nov 13, 2018 - 5:07 AM - Nikolai Comment Link


    Finally I found your tool. I use it on Mac. Runs fine under high sierra.

    I’ve got a wish for a feature:

    Could you put a checkmark in settings that will quit the tool automatically when all wol calls are send?

    Thanks and best regards




    • Nov 13, 2018 - 6:23 AM - hans - Author: Comment Link

      Hi Nikolai!

      That’s actually not a good idea! 
      In the next version I’ll add this option – close miniWOL after all WOLs have been send. This way folks can add multiple devices to be waken.
      It may take a little for me to make that change (since I’m migrating it 64bit and signed for MacOS, and I do have some more projects listed for the same treatment).
      But I will implement this, it now is on my “ToDo” list 



      • Nov 13, 2018 - 6:34 AM - Nikolai Comment Link

        I hope it’s not a bad idea ;-)

        Thanks for the quick response, and looking forward to a new version



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