I run a PC at home that I want to access from remote when I am travelling.

The minimum requirement is that I can access it once every day (if I can access it more often the better of course).

I can wakeup my PC via ACPI from S5, so I guess I have two options:

One way would be simply to let the PC run (downside: costs energy/money and not eco-friendly).

The other way would be to make it wake up every x hours.

As I don't know much about electronics I wonder if there is the danger of shortening my PC's lifetime (or of some components) if I power it up and down too much (e.g once every hour).

What would you do?

  • You could always turn it on using WoL, by connecting to a Linux powered router using SSH (DD-WRT, Tomato, not sure if OpenWRT has this as well).
    – paradroid
    Jul 21 '11 at 1:41

You can use a managed power strip, which is a power strip with a network interface and web management application, that lets you turn the power on or off remotely.

These are usually server-grade equipment, so they can get quite expensive... but if you Google around for "managed power strip" or "ip power strip", you can find some decent products at affordable prices.

  • We use the at work for AMX panels. Very useful bit of equipment and one of the best upgrades we've installed in a while.
    – Joe Taylor
    Jul 20 '11 at 22:20

There's no rational concern about shortening your PC's life doing this. Full power up/down would be inefficient, and has a tiny fractional risk of reducing the overall life of your PC. Sleep/wake cycles have an even tinier fractional risk associated.

However, neither is rational, unless it's a really poorly built PC. Almost any modern PC can handle a virtually unlimited number of power up/down or sleep/wake cycles during its useful lifetime.


Every hour? In that case I would leave it powered on. If possible acivate the power-down modes of your os, but make sure network traffic wakes up your box.


Modern desktop computers (that aren't specially built for graphics or some other high-power use) are really quite efficient and draw very little power -- on the order of 50 watts when idling. But if you choose to shut them down, the "wear" on the unit is quite small.

"Modern" desktop operating systems, on the other hand, are kludges that are quite easily mucked up, and are at their most kludgy and are most exposed during IPL and shutdown.

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