A reminder/tip to check your power settings in the BIOS

The Situation:

This weekend was the Remembrance Day long weekend, which means, of course, that something went wrong at work and I had fix it.  As usual, I made a VPN connection from home and tried to start a Remote Desktop session with my PC at work – but I could not connect.  I tried pinging it and it did not respond.  I had to use other means to resolve the issue, but it would have been much easier if I could have just logged into my own machine, which I suspected had been powered off.  Sure enough, this morning on arriving at work I found my machine powered down.  My co-workers’ PCs where also powered down, so there must have been some kind of power failure.

The Problem:

When you rely on being able to access your PC remotely in order to work, it is a problem if things like brown-outs and black-outs shut off your access.  A downed PC could mean an early morning commute to work on a Saturday – yech!  UPSs can help, but only for a limited time.  How do you ensure that your PC will be there when you need it?

The Tip:

Check your BIOS.  I know every board is different, so I can’t tell you where to find it, but on mine I located a setting that controls what should happen when AC power is restored to the PC.  In my case I could have the PC stay powered down (which was the default), automatically power up, or return to the power-state it was in when the power was lost.  I chose the last option, which means that if the power goes out while my computer is on, when the power is restored, the PC will boot up – perfect.


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