Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I'm surprised I can't find this anywhere, but is it possible to have a sleeping PC wake up when a Skype call comes in? If so, how to set it up? Using XP.

share|improve this question
WOL usually requires the sending of a Magic Packet, but despite the name, its actually a Layer2 Frame ( meaning it has to originate on your network. as such, it would not be easy to set up the system you are envisioning. – Frank Thomas Apr 19 '13 at 18:27
seems like it would be a common thing for people to want. – Marty Apr 19 '13 at 19:00
up vote 1 down vote accepted

You could always use a Magic Packet utility to send the WOL command first, then after a few seconds or so (depending on how long it takes the computer to wake) send the Skype request. This would assume that either the computer is being woken from Hibernation where Skype was left running, or where Skype was set to run and log in on boot.

However, it's not just a Skype feature you are talking about here. There is far more to the concept of waking a computer using WOL. I hinted at that above, but essentially, in order to WOL, you need to communicate directly to the BIOS of the computer, not an installed program. Why? Because if the computer is "asleep", you don't have access to the installed operating system or program. You only have access to the OS and programs once the computer has booted up.

share|improve this answer
Darn, was hoping this would be common enough that there would be a solution readily available somewhere. I suppose if I have Skype running when I suspend the PC, I could have the Magic Packet utility send a WOL command, and Skype would start ringing upon the PC waking. Assuming the caller lets it ring, and assuming Skype will even try to ring if the user appears to be offline...sounds like it's not worth the trouble. I guess everyone's just leaving their PCs on all the time! – Marty Apr 19 '13 at 23:38
If the user is offline, or the program is not running before you send the Skype call request, then you are not going to be able to make that call. That's why I said you'd have to wait a few seconds or so, depending on how long it takes the computer to wake. You'd have to wait for Skype on that computer to load and be available. It has absolutely nothing to do with how common the desire is or not. When the computer is off, or asleep, you can't communicate with any installed programs. That's just how it is. – Bon Gart Apr 20 '13 at 13:49
true, but where there's demand, there's a way. – Marty Apr 20 '13 at 19:24

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.