Thread: Constructing a Wake On Lan packet (low level packet)

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2019

    Constructing a Wake On Lan packet (low level packet)

    Hello there!

    As an exercise, I am trying to implement a WOL programme to use inside my local network. As per the specification of a magic packet:

    The magic packet is a broadcast frame containing anywhere within its payload 6 bytes of all 255 (FF FF FF FF FF FF in hexadecimal), followed by sixteen repetitions of the target computer's 48-bit MAC address, for a total of 102 bytes.
    Let's say I have a MAC address of AA:BB:CCD and I want to construct a data element to be sent to my network (broadcasted actually) so that my device with said MAC address can accept it.

    If I go and write std::string mac = "AABBCCDD", I am giving the ASCII values of each character to mac, which will be translated (to bytes) 41 41 42 42 43 43 44 44. Would I need to use std::hex in a string stream to accomplice my goal?

    What is the standard practice to create such a low level packet? Should I still use unsigned char arrays?

    Thank you so much for your time!

  2. #2
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Feb 2019
    RAW sockets on Level 2...
    Easy to do in Linux... hard to do in everything else...

  3. #3
    Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2019
    I am gladly on linux. I will definitely look into RAW sockets, but still this another matter, isn't it?

  4. #4
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2017
    #include <stdio.h>
    typedef unsigned char uchar;
    int main() {
        uchar packet[102] = {'\xFF', '\xFF', '\xFF', '\xFF', '\xFF', '\xFF'};
        uchar mac[6] = {0, 0, '\xAA', '\xBB', '\xCC', '\xDD'};
        // construct packet
        for (int i = 0; i < 16; ++i)
            for (int j = 0; j < 6; ++j)
                packet[i * 6 + j + 6] = mac[j];
        // display on terminal
        for (int i = 0; i < 17; ++i) {
            for (int j = 0; j < 6; ++j)
                printf("%02X ", packet[i * 6 + j]);
        // write to binary file
        FILE *fout = fopen("packet.bin", "wb");
        fwrite(packet, 1, 102, fout);
        return 0;
    Ordinary language is totally unsuited for expressing what physics really asserts.
    Only mathematics can say as little as the physicist means to say. - Bertrand Russell

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